TEMA Athletics has been making their mark around Seattle, Wash. From Soul Pose, Tula Yoga Festival, to various community related events, TEMA has been showing Seattle that there’s a new fitness fashion player in town and her mission is to do more than get women in new athletic gear.
TEMA Athletic’s Mission:
Bhawna Gupta is the creator of TEMA Athletics and created the line to empower women in all shapes and sizes. TEMA offers comfortable, functional and stylish athletic clothing for women sized XS all the to 3X. There is a fit for every woman that highlights her beauty inside and out.
We had an opportunity to interview Bhawna to learn more about how TEMA was created and her purpose for uplifting the lives of those around her.
What were you doing before making TEMA your full-time endeavor? Was this a career change? If so, why the change? What was your inspiration?
Before TEMA I was working on a fitness app and managing a Facebook group of around 25K people. It was a platform to connect people who needed motivation to achieve their fitness goals. Starting TEMA was a complete 180 degree shift in my career. I came from a computer science background with no experience in fashion industry. I had to learn everything from scratch right from understanding fabric, to fitting, to hangtags, labels, designing and I had to make Photoshop my new best friend.
I struggled with body image all my life and more so after my daughter was born. I was constantly fighting with myself to change my body so I could look like someone else. During my struggle for this “perfect” body, I saw that most brands only showed skinny models to sell their products, but in reality a majority of the women don’t fit that category of this “perfect” body. Most of the time, women want to change their body to fit in something they like or they feel bad about their shape and that they can’t wear what they want. This inspired me to create a brand that lets every woman to embrace their curves and start their fitness journey wherever they are, for who they are.
What’s your favorite style of yoga and why?
I was born in India in a small town which was famous for Yoga. I grew up surrounded by yogis, who practiced various styles. My personal favorite is Hot Yoga. I have been on and off yoga currently due to a knee injury.
You make a range of clothing for all bodies. Can you tell us more about this business decision?
We believe in Fitness for every body size. To support that cause, we provide a large spectrum of sizes from XS-3X. We want to create an inclusive environment for everyone.
What is the most important lesson(s) you’ve learned in creating your own business?
Go for your passion, even if you don’t know anything you will figure it out. Don’t ever look back and just keep moving forward. Hearing “No!” doesn’t mean end of the world just try something else, knock another door or call someone… Perseverance is the key.
There are so many fashion designers out there. Tell us how TEMA stands out from the rest of the competition.
One of the biggest differences with TEMA is that when we design our styles, keeping in mind a regular women’s body. We think about her having room around waist, styles where she has coverage but still looks trendy, a design where she can feel comfortable and embrace her body, convenience, we’ll do anything so she can love her body.
Do you have any future plans or visions for TEMA?
Our focus is to grow TEMA as a body positivity brand. When someone thinks of TEMA, it should come across as a very approachable and relatable brand. That is something we are striving for. We also want to focus on our e-commerce presence in the US and expand internationally in the next couple of years.
We’d like to thank Bhawna Gupta for sharing her story with us and for supporting the Seattle yoga community through her products and the message she wishes to instill in all women.
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