Introducing Adèle Basheer from Intrinsic.

We’d love you to give a huge SA Woman welcome to Adèle Basheer from Intrinsic, who steps into the business spotlight this month! 

Adèle is adored by so many people, right around Australia & the world, and Jess from Jess McEachen Copywriting wasn’t shy in saying she was having a fangirl moment when she took 5 with Adèle!!

In this chat, Adèle reveals how Intrinsic began with 1 handmade card…which turned into over 20,000 handmade cards, before they were approached by an international card company. And yes – they are still very much an Adelaide-based biz! We get the party tooters out for Intrinsic’s 25th birthday, dive right into Adèle’s secrets to longevity, where she & her team draw their inspiration from, as well as her own special rituals that take her through the week and year.

Adèle also tells us how she’s blown away by how connected and supportive SA Woman members are, and how its the perfect place to connect with other like-minded souls. Couldn’t agree more!

This will leave you feeling inspired and shining bright, and we’re so grateful to have Adèle with us in the Business Spotlight for November.

// Hello Adèle & welcome to the Biz Spotlight for November! First of all, can I admit that I’m having a bit of a fangirl moment, because I’ve adored your range for such a long time now!!! But, for those who haven’t come across you yet, can you please introduce us to Intrinsic & the beauty you share with the world?

We’re really excited to be in the spotlight, supporting the AMAZING SA Woman community and hopefully inspiring fellow SAW members too! ☺

For those of you new to Intrinsic, we’re a lifestyle stationery and gift brand, with a deep-seated mission to inspire and help people shine their brightest light throughout their life.

We do that by developing beautiful designs with bold colour and soulful words onto everyday products that people can easily weave into their life. So, from your morning cuppa to your gratitude journaling at night, we’re there for you, supporting you through the good, the great and even the most challenging times.

I quite often say that people who are surrounded with Intrinsic sort of have a life coach in their back pocket!


// Now, do you mind taking us right back to the beginning, because I’ve heard that the birth of your business is a wonderful ‘love story’. How did Intrinsic start?

Oh gosh – that is one BIG story! But, in a nutshell, before we began Intrinsic, my husband Jamie and I were like ships in the night, not quite connecting. We were both juggling busy careers with raising two young children, and it just wasn’t a joyful time.

Somewhere deep down, we both wanted to rediscover that deep connection that we’d lost – with each other, with life and with ourselves.

After nearly parting ways, we did ‘the work’ (on ourselves) and ultimately discovered we wanted to live and work together, around our children, and do something that made a difference… though we had no idea what that would look like!

So we quit our jobs and commenced the hunt to find out what our new venture together would be.

One day (as the finances were dwindling), I was hand-making a card that had an inspiring message on it – I think it was from Albert Einstein – and Jamie said maybe we could make cards and sell them at the markets. Instead, he approached our local newsagency at Stepney and we had our first order!

We handmade over 20,000 cards before we were approached by an international card company, and we haven’t looked back.

// And, I don’t think I’d be the only one who didn’t know that Intrinsic is a South Aussie brand, through & through! I was so excited to find that out a few years back, and it’s even better to know that so many South Australians help bring your creations to life.

What do you love most about being based here in Adelaide? And have you ever thought of taking Intrinsic interstate or overseas?

Hahaha yes, so many people – both here and interstate – are blown away when they learn we’re an Adelaide-based business.

But we’re in good company, with national and internationally renowned brands like Haigh’s, RM Williams and Maggie Beer paving the way, and newer brands like Kayla Itsines, Tiff Manuell and Paolo Sebastian proving you can be on the world stage and still call Adelaide home.

In our minds, Intrinsic has always transcended borders. When we first began, Jamie and I hopped in the car and drove to Melbourne to show our cards to newsagencies, then started exhibiting at interstate trade fairs in Melbourne and Sydney. We’ve built Intrinsic to be a nationally recognised brand and our largest customer base is actually in Queensland!

We’ve also had several global licencing partnerships, from mobile phone covers and lanyards in Spain, greeting cards in the US and also translated for Russia, as well as photo albums in Germany. So we have international fans all over.

In 2019, we were invited to exhibit at an International trade fair and picked up our first US distributor. It was exhilarating and a HUGE learning curve, dealing with different ways of doing business. We had an amazing four months before Covid shut things up, but I’m really confident of Intrinsic heading back into the world. We still have a lot of people to help and inspire.

The main thing I love about Adelaide is that our family is here. Our best friends moved to Sydney eight years ago and then our daughter five years ago, and we did contemplate moving there for a while, but it didn’t feel right leaving our Intrinsic family. I think one of the silver linings of Covid is that we’ve all learned to adapt to the changes in the way we operate and do business. Half our team are working from home and we’re still running our Monday morning huddle on Zoom.


We quit our jobs and commenced the hunt to find out what our new venture together would be.

One day (as the finances were dwindling), I was hand-making a card that had an inspiring message on it – I think it was from Albert Einstein – and Jamie said maybe we could make cards and sell them at the markets. Instead, he approached our local newsagency at Stepney and we had our first order!

We handmade over 20,000 cards before we were approached by an international card company, and we haven’t looked back.

Adèle Basheer


 // Now, we need to get our party tooters out & pop the champagne, because this year marks 25 years in business for Intrinsic! 25 years! That is just such an achievement & you must be so proud.

I can’t imagine it’s been 100% smooth sailing, so what have you found to be the secrets to your longevity? How have you navigated the roadblocks & hurdles, and been able to stay true to your vision?

It’s a great question. I often say business is not for the faint hearted (have you noticed all of the courage and strength quotes in our collection!) but actually, it’s staying true to your vision and your values that helps you to get through those challenging times. It’s so much easier to navigate those obstacles when you’re in alignment.

We’ve had so many hurdles, but none quite as challenging as leaving our publisher of nine years and having to start our business all over again. I think getting through that and being as successful as we are now has truly cemented the belief that anything is possible.

// And of course, it’s a bit hard to ignore the global events of the past year or two. Looking at this from the inside & out…what have been the biggest lessons or growth areas for you & Intrinsic throughout the pandemic? And how have you felt called to help your customers & community?

Along with many other small businesses, we were just uncertain about what lay ahead. In the first confusing week of lockdown, we didn’t know if we would be considered an essential business, so we immediately organised plant-based milks to create gift packs with our mugs. In the end, we didn’t have to use the milk, but we kept the gift pack idea and they’ve become one of our best online products.

The second thing we did was think about how we could support our fans and retail customers. We created free online workshops, downloadables and mindful colouring pages, as well as helped our stores with marketing materials and zoom support.

In all that uncertainty, we were really concerned with the mental health of our team. Jamie ran an hour-long weekly zoom huddle to keep everyone in the loop and connected. Every Monday he put two questions on Slack, one related to work and one more personal. It was just so powerful and wonderful to feel the connection and learn from each other. I think it brought the whole team together.

// I am absolutely LOVING the theme for your 2022 Diaries – The Year to Rise Strong. So good! Just makes me want to sit up tall, look life square in the eyes and make sure I’m doing what brings me joy. Once again, you’re helping us all out by releasing a gorgeous array of 2022 Diaries, planner pads, daily planners, calendars & more! What are your top tips for goal-setting and being productive across the year? And, how can we Rise Strong?

My top tip is to use the Intrinsic Diary of course! But don’t just take my word for it, it’s our diary fans who keep returning and letting us know how powerful it’s been for them.

When it comes to goal setting, make sure your ‘why’ is your guiding light. When there are so many things we could do, and plenty of people who’ll tell you what you should do, knowing your why and your vision keeps you focused.

As for being productive, I’m very much a last-minute person and ever amazed at what we manage to get done! What I’m able to do well is focus intently when I have to, and I’m so fortunate to have a great team who play to their strengths and we get things done.

To Rise Strong, we really need to become courageous and develop resilience to life’s challenges. It really helps to be open to change and growth.

(PS… We actually have three themes for the 2022 Diaries! The Year to Rise Strong, The Year for New Beginnings and The Year For You – something for everyone, whatever you’re going through)

2022 Intrinsic Planner - The Year to Rise Strong

// I think it’s pretty safe to call you the Inspiration Queen! I absolutely love flipping over my calendar each month and turning to a new page in my diary. Not to mention the gorgeous cards & gifts that just always have the perfect message! And, your socials are always overflowing with inspo.

Where do you get your inspiration from and how have you kept the ideas & creativity flowing for a quarter of a century now?

Well I don’t know about ‘Inspiration Queen’! I’m really just an ordinary girl who likes to help people, and has created a business that allows me to do just that.

But gosh a quarter of a century – that sounds soooooo long!

Inspiration is always around us. The challenge is to take that inspiration and manifest it into something that’s useable, appreciated and makes a difference.

I find inspiration in global events, a story I’ve read, or even what’s happening to the people I love or me personally.

There’s no shortage of ideas, but honing those ideas takes craftsmanship, and that’s what takes time.

As a team, we have yearly immersion weeks where we pull everyone from design, marketing, sales and even the warehouse in to brainstorm ideas and themes for products. Our team are brainstorming legends – we actually have more ideas than we have space to fill them!

// Bit of a cheeky question & this might be like asking someone to choose their favourite child…but what’s your favourite Intrinsic saying or message at the moment?

Yes, I do feel like they’re all my children, but there are times when certain quotes really resonate with me deeply. Right now, there’s a particular message I wrote for one of the diary covers that feels like a personal pep talk…

“Bring your bold heart and fearless spirit, it’s time to pull down the wall of uncertainty and play in the field of possibility”

I just love this message, especially after the last two years, and it’s a reminder that with passion, vision and a brave heart, anything is possible.


// I know that you’re someone that absolutely walks your talk. Can you tell us about some of your favourite rituals to help you move through the day, week & year?

Well, you’ve probably heard the saying “we teach what we most need to hear…” I like to put into practice what we put out there but I’m still, and will always be, constantly learning, growing and evolving.

There are however some do’s and don’t do’s that I find really helpful for me.

  • Over the last few years I seem to have morphed from a night owl into a lark, and as a morning person, I now love getting up early and having me-time for a run or a meditation before the day starts.
  • We’re a gratitude-practicing family. Even since the kids have left home, we still do ‘three good things’ at the dinner table whenever we’re together or over zoom. Gratitude is a daily habit.
  • Journaling and particularly the guided questions in our diary and journals really help me to stay grounded and in tune with my intuition.
  • Using the habit tracker in our diary is my daily mood booster… I just LOVE ticking those little round circles. My longest streak began earlier this year when I decided to give up alcohol for the month of May, but just kept going. I’m now over six months alcohol-free thanks to my habit tracker and a few habit hacks to help.
  • One thing I’ve stopped doing this year is looking at the news in the morning. In fact, I only catch up on news once or twice a week. It’s wonderful for mental health! If there’s something important, I’ll hear about it from someone in the studio.


// We are so grateful for your generosity & presence within the SA Woman community. Not to mention your presents! I’ll never forget the look on everyone’s face at the SA Woman Summit this year when they saw you had gifted them a Diary each! What do you love most about the SA Woman community & what it can provide to local women in business?

I absolutely love how connected and supportive the SAW members are. I don’t spend much time on social media, but when I do happen to come across group posts, I am always blown away by how helpful everyone is to each other – it’s beautiful to see!

No matter what stage you’re at in your business, we can still all learn from one-another. I absolutely love learning from young businesses about their business journey.

It can sometimes feel lonely when you’re running a business yourself or have a very small team, so the SA Woman community provides women in business with a way of connecting with other like-minded souls. Something which is so beneficial to our mental health!


// Lastly, a question we do love to ask everyone – where are your favourite spots for a delish working lunch?

Well, to be honest, I usually take lunch at my desk, or standing up in the studio kitchen! People who come to Intrinsic love to lounge in our colourful, light-filled boardroom and we’ve hosted a few lunches there.

We’re more likely to have a brunch meeting at Part Time Lover, but if we are having a linger-longer lunch with interstate customers or suppliers; Oggi, Press and Shobosho are my usual go-to’s.


Thanks for chatting with us Adèle!!

Find out more about Adèle Basheer + Intrinsic:

Facebook: Intrinsic


LinkedIn: Adèle Basheer