“The norm in fashion is to manufacture as much as you can all at once in order to reduce costs. We decided the better way for us to manufacture would be to make each swimsuit, legging or sports-bra only after someone had purchased it. That way we know each Elle Evans piece we make is going to a happy home, not to landfill.”— ELLIE EVANS
Founded in 2013; Elle Evans Swimwear creates beautiful, sustainable, swimwear for people who care about fashion and the future.
Overwhelmed by the impact of the industry they had worked in and loved for years, the team at Elle Evans have been doing things their way from day one. Shying away from mass production they make each swimsuit to order in their ethical workspace in Melbourne, Australia. Choosing to use luxurious Vita ECONYL® regenerated nylon made from 100% nylon waste from the oceans and landfills- to create all their products. Sustainable practices are the backbone of the company, but contemporary, fashion-focused designs are what Elle Evans Swimwear has become known for. Attention to detail, innovative cuts and their signature nature-inspired prints come together to create magic each and every collection.
-saving the ocean one bikini at a time
Made from ECONYL® 100% regenerated nylon yarn, our fabric has a long and fascinating story before it even reaches our workspace in Melbourne. The ECONYL® process starts with rescuing waste, like fishing nets, fabric scraps, carpet flooring and industrial plastic from landfills and oceans all over the world. That waste is then sorted and cleaned to recover all of the nylon possible. Through a radical regeneration and purification process, the nylon waste is recycled right back to its original quality -a process that is far less environmentally harmful that the production of “virgin” nylon.
That nylon fibre is then knit into our soft swim fabric in a mill in Italy, before it reaches our supplier in QLD. Our Aussie printer digitally prints our fabric using water-based, non-toxic inks, no inks are discarded down drains and no washing is required after printing. They recycle all their discarded paper and all their fabric rolls despatched across the country are wrapped in recycled plastic.
The fabrics we use are man made, no animals are harmed to produce them, in fact, as ECONYL® is made from plastic waste dredged from the sea, the marine-life are actually benefiting from our fabric being made!
-obsessive design and zero-waste production
Because Elle Evans Swimwear was built with sustainability at the foundation we take a very different approach to design and production than most companies. The norm in fashion production is to manufacture as much as you can all at once in order to reduce costs. We decided the better way for us to manufacture would be to make each swimsuit, legging or sports-bra only after someone had purchased it. That way we know each Elle Evans piece we make is going to a happy home, not to landfill!
Once an order is placed on the Elle Evans website, co-founder, designer and seamstress -Elle, heads out to our workspace where four sewing machines, a cutting table and an industrial iron await. She spends the most time laying patterns on to our fabric ‘just so’ to make sure we end up with the smallest amount of fabric wastage. Smaller scraps are saved and often become a frill or strap down the track on someone else’s swimsuit. The order is sewn up, pressed and popped in a carry bag (Also sewn in our workshop out of dead stock fabrics), then posted out through carbon neutral couriers Sendle. Any hired seamstress’ are paid by the hour, above a minimum wage here in Australia, they work less than five hours at a time and stop for regular tea breaks and pats with the studio kitty cat, Louis.
-closing the loop
It's so important to us that once an Elle Evans swimsuit is out of our workspace it isn't out of our hands. We want everything we create to be re-worn time and time again, handed down to friends, sisters, brothers and kids and then -and only then- once it's reached it's full potential, recycled back into the system it came from. That’s the beauty of the ECONYL ® Regeneration System. While we are still only a young company we hope that in the future all our customers can recycle their Elle Evans swimsuit, legging, rashie or sports bra through us, knowing that they have closed the loop rather than left a footprint on the ecosystem.
If you want to contact us about anything you’ve read here, or if you’re interested in recycling your Elle Evans swimsuit, drop us a line here.
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