Growing up, Thao Luu-Brinberg excelled in Maths and Science, as well as Art and Creative Studies. Art, however, was not encouraged as a viable path for a successful career, so she eventually earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Manufacturing Engineering from Australia’s Swinburne University of Technology.
Interestingly, Swinburne was one of the first universities to join the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot, chartered to improve the promotion and retention of women and gender minorities in STEM -- a standpoint integral to Thao’s overall thinking and Nu Sensuelle’s wider mission. Multi-faceted on every level, Thao also managed to fuel her creative passions by studying art, jewelery design, and shoe design over the course of several years.
With her diverse educational background as a cornerstone, Thao then charted a career in various industries, including the pharmaceutical industry, research, importing, whitegoods, and fashion. It was while working at Toshiba that she decided, in order to grow, she needed to embark on a new venture.
“My dream at a young age was to have my own business, so I made it my job to learn every facet of business, not just engineering, in every company that I worked in,” she explained. “This way, when the time was right, I would have all of the knowledge required to run my own business.” Thus, in 2009, Novel Creations was born. Nu Sensuelle was later launched under the Novel Creations brand in 2010.
Today, Thao works in close concert with her husband, Barry, for Nu Sensuelle idea development and product conceptualization. “We are both artistic, so our ideas come sporadically -- sometimes in the middle of the night, sometimes while driving, reading, or running,” she explains. “We keep [the ideas] in the backs of our minds until we feel we can turn one into an actual beautiful product.”
From there, Thao leads the charge, working with factory engineers to come up with product internals, eventually yielding hand-made prototypes that are tested and refined.
“I am very hands-on from the first idea to final production of our toys, probably because I am a bit of a perfectionist and like to have a handle on everything,” Thao says. “There is just no point in creating another rechargeable toy that has the same design as another product -- so we have chosen to come up with our own designs and work with our factory engineers, which gives all of our products their own unique features.”
Thus, embodying the spirit of innovative adventure powering all aspects of Nu Sensuelle.