Naomi Newirth was born and raised on one of the world’s most beautiful islands. So it’s no wonder that Acacia, her swimwear line, reflects that endless ocean love.
Growing up with limitless access to the Pacific Ocean must surely be life-altering and influential, but ACACIA’s founder took her homeland as inspiration for her career, designing the type of swimwear she once searched for but could not find. Now a thriving business woman and mother, Naomi effortlessly strikes a balance between the two, and we are lucky enough to share here how she manages to do it all.
I am so in love with your story about being raised in beautiful Hawaii and sewing your own bathing suits at a young age. Can you please tell us what it was like to grow up in such a stunning place?
Growing up in Hawaii was special. We spent weekends at the beach, running to waterfalls. Growing up here has given me a greater appreciation for Mother Nature and now being able to watch my baby boy love nature as much as I do makes me so happy. We live two minutes from the most beautiful waterfall, and 10 minutes from the beach where I grew up surfing.
And who taught you to sew?
At age 15 I signed up for a sewing class that was designed to teach you how to sew exactly what you wanted to. It was the perfect class — I wanted to learn how to sew swimwear as a way to decide if I was really passionate about swim, fashion, and if it was something I wanted to pursue in my future.
Your bio indicates that you ended up in Bali. What brought you there and what happened?
The surf world brought me to Bali in 2006 and, on that same trip I was lucky enough to meet a swimwear factory as we had mutual friends. That year she made me my own personal samples. I still work with that same factory today.
You feel a deep connection to the ocean. Did you learn to swim and surf at a very young age?
I did. Swimming comes naturally to us island babies. Not many take swim lessons, but we grew up at the beach so it’s one of those lessons that you learn without even knowing. When you are little, everyone here is an auntie or uncle, not by blood but by friendship. I had an uncle named Thomas who taught me how to surf and would shape all my boards. I used to go surfing with him every weekend which then turned into surfing up to 4 times a day. In high school after I got my license he would let my girlfriends and I take his baby blue Ford Falcon for a spin. We would pile our boards on top of the roof and all go surfing. I lived at the beach and have some of the most wonderful memories of days spent surfing.
I love the name ACACIA, which literally a warm-climate tree or shrub with spikes or clusters of yellow or white flowers. Is there meaning to the name beyond the literal?
ACACIA is my middle name. It holds strong meaning (strength, love, purity, wealth, etc.) and is found in places like Hawaii, Australia, and Africa.
You found a wonderful work-life balance, always prioritizing your son – Hunter – and bringing him along on work trips and photo shoots. If you could give advice to any mothers or mothers-to-be out there who are a bit intimidated by the idea of traveling with a child, what would you tell them?
Traveling with a child is not easy, but I would regret not doing it. They learn from experience and the world around them. Hunter is such a good little traveler. Flights are temporary. Hunter actually loves planes. He is not allowed much screen time as I am a strong believer in its effect on child development, but there is a time and place. For me that time and place is on the airplane. Right before a trip, I also buy him new little toys that I wrap and he gets to open on board. Something to get excited and look forward to. We make flights fun. As long as he is happy, even though it’s exhausting, nothing is worse then an unhappy child on a flight. This last work trip to Bali I saw him grow so much. He really loves Bali and I am so happy as it is a second home for me. The culture, the people, the beauty and all of his auntie and uncles over there (close friends of ours) — it is a very special place. I feel so fortunate to be able to have him tag along on all my work-related trips. I haven’t spent a night away from him yet.
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