Joanna Swica is the runner, entrepreneur and fashionista who joined the TV show Robinson (Swedish version of Survivor) in spring of 2021. Joanna won our hearts by standing up for her opinions and values, handling both the physical and mental challenges with bravo and at the same time wearing Astrid Wild. The girl crush was a fact.
We quickly realized that we share the same values and perspective on the outdoors, and are passionate about inspiring women. A bit more than six months ago, we decided to develop a product together, and that was the beginning of SWICA x WILD.
Of course, we wanted to take the opportunity to ask Joanna some questions about the design of the fleece jacket, about nature, the concept of outdoors and, of course, about Robinson.
What were your thoughts when designing the fleece?
I knew exactly how I wanted it right away when I was asked, so the actual design process was very easy! I wanted an orange fleece because it's my favorite color, with an oversize and boxy fit because I want it to work anytime, in any weather and on any occasion. I wanted large pockets and the fleece to be so cozy that you never want to take it off.
What do you like about it?
What I like about the fleece jacket? - Love at first sight!
To the person wearing the fleece, what do you want them to feel?
I want the person who wears this fleece jacket to simply feel good and embrace themselves! A feeling that I can do whatever, whenever and however I want. I want you to feel sassy and chic. Because that's exactly what this fleece says, it's a statement - here I come!
What does nature mean to you?
Nature for me is a place where I feel at home. I grew up in the forest and by the water. It is a place where I simply feel natural, strong and brave. The forest has never scared me, darkness has never scared me, water has never scared me. I feel incredibly strong in nature.
What’s your philosophy about outdoor and outdoor clothes?
My philosophy regarding outdoor clothing is to wear what you want and mix and match. There is an incredible amount of stylish outdoor clothing for women, Astrid Wild for example. But most importantly, don't put yourself in a box. It doesn't have to be outdoor wear with lots of gadgets and pointing sticks. You can be gorgeous, you can be comfy, and you can do it exactly how you want it!
In your opinion, what is the worst prejudice when it comes to the outdoors?
The worst prejudice regarding the outdoors for me is that you must know everything, must have everything and that you must socialize and hangout with a specific type of people. You have to be outdoorsy and you have to love everything about the forest, camping and getting dirty. Absolutely, all that you will be, but you can still like luxury, comfort and being stylish. You can still care about all that superficial stuff that I sometimes think is looked down upon, and still be 100% outdoorsy.
What was the biggest insight and lesson from Robinson?
The biggest realization and lesson when it comes to Robinson was clearly that I am so much better than I sometimes believe about myself. I have a good self-esteem and a good confidence in what I do, but sometimes I don't realize the potential and the trust I have in myself that I can do so much more. I really became more aware of who I was in Robinson, and I liked myself even more after the program. I thought, "Johanna, you're damn fine, I want to be friends with you!"
What is your attitude to nature and the outdoors after Robinson, did anything change after the program?
I wouldn't say it changed, but I opened my eyes even more to Sweden. I recorded Haparanda in 2021, and I probably fell even more in love with Swedish nature after that. So if anything changed it would be that I love nature even more now.
I wrote to you after I joined the program, "You must watch TV4 in March. Can't say much more than I tried your clothes, and they worked very well!” Yes, you can really say that I quality-tested Astrid Wild clothes properly. I slept in the clothes for 7 weeks , competed in them and basically lived in them. They still last and only get nicer and nicer every day!
You run Friendcation, a network with over 17000 women in the Facebook group. Friendcation? What’s your dream and goal with Friendcation?
The dream and purpose of Friendcation is to inspire. To motivate women and girls to dare to challenge themselves, dare to say here I am, to get out into nature even if you are not an outdoorsy person. Dare to run even if you're not a runner, to travel and meet new friends, to meet new people, to go outside your comfort zone and to find yourself and feel - I'm damn good, I want to be friends with you.
3 simple tips on how to become an outdoorsy person this autumn?
I think that, together with Astrid Wild, I want to encourage and inspire you to spend more time in nature this autumn. So I think we should do an autumn challenge, to spend one day during a month out in nature. Google some nice nature reserve, gather your friends, buy some hot dogs, put on your fleece jacket and go out! It doesn't have to be a whole day, but it can be just a few hours. Cook dinner outside, bring a storm cooker or find some wood and make a bonfire. Or even easier, buy food and sit on a rock or a picnic blanket by the water or in the forest, and just spend time out in nature. It's a good and easy first step.
Joanna is 176 cm and wears size Large in the SWICA x WILD Wool Fleece Jacket.
Thank you Joanna for the chat and for a fantastic collaboration! If you want to see more pictures from the collaboration, click here.