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6th January 2020

Q & A: Kath Ebbs and Zoe Terakes

Teva speaks to Sydney creatives, partners and Queer activists Kath Ebbs and Zoe Terakes on paving the way for LGBTQIA+ conversations in Australia, celebrating love and being unapologetically yourself.

Q & A: Kath Ebbs and Zoe Terakas

Kath Ebbs

First off, Hi, how are you and can you tell us your name, your pronouns and a little bit about yourself and your projects that you want the world to know about?
Hello! I am okay given the weird world we are living in at the moment. My name is Kathleen Ebbs and my pronouns are she/they. I am a Sydney-based content creator, model and presenter. I recently launched my own IGTV series called “Conversations with Kath” in which I interview people I’m inspired by in the hopes others find some inspiration too.

Describe yourself as if you were your best friend hyping you up.
Kathleen is a seeker of all things fun and creative. They are passionate about other people’s joy and giving a voice to all. Going against the grain, Kath doesn’t shy away from chatting about the things we are all thinking but not talking about. Sex, periods, masturbation, mental health, sexism… She gives a sh*t! Critical thinking and conscious living is their motto!

What is something you’re currently trying to manifest?
Ooo I have a weird thing about sharing the things I’m manifesting; I feel like it’s bad juju! But I am always writing things down in my journal weekly. Some big, some small. Never be scared of your dreams. Go big or go home!

What are some self-care habits/products/things that are keeping you level right now?
Ocean swims. I’m lucky enough right now to be living by the ocean. Jumping into that salty water honestly cures all things! Whenever in doubt, just get into water! I don’t think about it, I just quickly chuck on my swimmers, Teva sandals and a towel then run down to the beach. Even if you don’t have access to the ocean. Bathing in water whether that be a bath or hanging in the shower is so healing for the soul. Getting off my phone. I suck at it, but oh It feels so good when I do it! I spend way too much time on my phone and I’m really trying to stop it - especially in the morning. It makes me feel 100 times better.

What was the last social cause you were introduced to, and can you introduce it to us?
Hmm I can’t really remember to be honest. But I am always learning and listening. This year has been a huge eye opener - more than ever. The bush fires, COVID, Black Lives Matter, recently seeing the devastation in Victoria for our indigenous folk in the destroying of the Djab Wurrung "directions tree". It has highlighted even more so how racist, classist and sexist (just to name a few) the world can be. The only thing I can say is, do your Googles! Stop asking and educate yourself instead. And if you are an Australian reading this, please for the love of everything good don’t be celebrating Australia day. Get your ass down to your local march and fight to change the date.

How has fashion played a role in your gender expression?
It has and it hasn’t. I believe gender is a social construct. We feel the need to gender everything! Like clothes, “for boys” and “for girls”. The history of this is sexist. I work hard in my own life to dismantle these constructs. So, when it comes to fashion, I wear whatever the hell I want, and I encourage all to do the same. Clothes are not gendered, make up is not gendered, hair styles are not gendered. Fashion to me is just a creative expression of who I am inside, without gender.

Original Universal Rainbow Black

How has your relationship with Instagram changed over the years – do you think it’s informed your personal style? Has it paved the way for new conversations for you personally?
Heaps and not much. Instagram is this amazing tool to educate and inspire us. But it can also be a very scary and anxiety inducing place, especially when it’s a public platform. I have changed so so so much since creating my very first account on there when I was 14. It’s scary to think all that growth is on the internet!

My relationship has changed with Instagram firstly because it is now my workplace (was not at all when I started using it back in high school). So, I have changed a lot as a person on there since. It used to just be a place to show off my work as a model, I now use it as a tool to talk about the things I care about. I have become less careful over the past year of what I post and feel as I’ve taken my autonomy back. It’s a great tool for education as well. I have learnt so much on Instagram, it even helped me accept my queer identity through the amazing LGBTQIA+ role models I follow. My relationship with the app bounces between healthy and toxic daily, but it’s a work in progress!

Do you think we can learn to be unapologetically ourselves? If so, how does one do that?
Sure! It’s hard and I don’t know if we ever fully get there (mind you I’m only 23, so possibly!) but it’s worth trying. I personally find cutting toxic people out of my life, setting boundaries, consuming positive media (books, shows, people you follow on social media), spending less time on the internet and doing weekly self-development work through therapy, journaling or meditation has helped me so much in becoming more of who I am at my core.

How to Style Teva sandals for summer

How are you styling Teva’s new Pride range?
So many ways! Teva sandals are my #1 summer shoe (and favourite winter shoe paired with some socks hehe). I wear them with jeans, dresses, with yoga tights, and even on their own with my swimmers when walking the beach. They are so easy to pair with your favourite outfit.

What does Pride mean to you?
Being proud of who you are, and all those standing alongside you on the journey of authenticity and self-love.

How will you be celebrating Pride this year?
Being myself every single day. Being an out and proud queer woman at the age of 23. I am proud of myself and my community every damn day.

Zoe Terakes

First off, Hi, how are you and can you tell us your name, your pronouns and a little bit about yourself and your projects that you want the world to know about?
Hello! I am doing good thank ya for asking. My name is Zoe Terakes. My pronouns are they/them. I am an Aries, an actor, and a nonbinary/transmasculine person. I’m into art (Louise Bourgeois and Tracey Emin in particular) and surfing and skating and guitar. I’m not very good at any of those things but am a huge fan of being bad at stuff and getting good at it.

Describe yourself as if you were your best friend hyping you up.
Oh I rate this. Hmmm. I’ve got a pretty massive heart and I’m fiercely loyal. I am a good partner and friend. I’m all or nothing, I don’t do things by halves. I have a lot of joy. I am so excited by life and in love with the world. I am like a little kid in how excited I get by the simplest stuff. I’m good at trying new things.

What is something you’re currently trying to manifest?
Gratitude in the moment. I think so often I am able to be grateful for something once I have some hindsight. But I want to be able to be deeply grateful for where I am and what I’m doing in the moment I’m doing it. I’m also manifesting calm. I think I was attracted to intensity for a long time and it’s nice to be able sit in a calmer place right now. Just trying to trust that that is enough!

What are some self-care habits/products/things that are keeping you level right now?
Surfing. As I said, I’m no good at it but man, it makes me feel like a prince. A new crystal I got - making me feel at peace. And the new Teva Pride sandals. They’re pretty rad.

How to Style Teva sandals for summer

As a Queer, Non-Binary individual, have you ever felt that impact your journey as an actor?
Yeah. Course. It’s worth it though.

Contributing to the Protect Trans Kids movement on social media, what is one thing you’d like everyone to take away from it?
Exactly that. Prioritise the safety and joy of trans kids - in particular trans kids of colour. I want to see a world where trans people have been celebrated since they set foot on this earth. Where they are treated as sacred and essential and magic. Cause they are.

How has fashion played a role in your gender expression?
It’s played a big role. Finding clothes that make me feel extra me has been so instrumental in my growth as a person. I feel more grounded and confident and calm when I’m in clothes that make me feel good.

Do you think we can learn to be unapologetically ourselves? If so, how does one do that?
Totally. It’s a journey. A long long road. I am still very much on it and the end is nowhere near in sight; but I’m on it. And that’s the important thing. Every day I try and make choices that are self-respecting and self-loving. I try and take up the space I deserve. I try and treat myself with the same kindness and respect and care that I would treat my friends. I am not successful a lot of the time. But I am trying.

How are you styling Teva’s new Pride range?
With some baggy shorts and a tee. And socks I reckon. Cause why not!

What does Pride mean to you?
Self-love. Community. Acknowledgment of the people who fought for our right to exist. Paying respect to those people. Honouring the trans people of colour passed who’s shoulders our community stands on.

How will you be celebrating Pride this year?
Probably hanging out with my love, Kath. Maybe having a dance with some queer and trans pals. Celebrating all that we are, all that we have been, and all that we are becoming.

Q & A: Kath Ebbs and Zoe Terakas

Q&A by Kathleen Ebbs and Zoe Terakes Imagery by @kathebbss and @zoeterakes.

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