If you’re starting out a swimwear line, then you are going into a very precise industry. So, here are a few tips to get started.

First off, understand why you are doing this. It sounds simple enough, but for designers who don’t understand this basic concept, they never last. An amazing designer can spot a gap in a saturated market and come up with something brand new, that no one else will have thought of. Why go into swimwear? Is there a new aesthetic that no one else has capitalised yet? Do you want to make swimwear more accessible for everyone, such as disabled people? Does the swimwear market accustom to you and everyone else around you? Sometimes asking yourself questions can help everything be a little bit clearer.

Market research will then help you a lot, if you do it well. The broader you make your research, the more you will find and then accustom your brand to more people. You can start your research by being very specific about what it is you are trying to find; so, let’s say you want a premium swimwear brand, find your competitors and look at their target audience. Design research is just as important, through the process look at as many swimsuits as you can in person to gather references for things like quality and manufacturing. Another great tool is the people around you, ask them questions. What do they like? What do they dislike? What do they want from swimwear?

Marketing is also key. If you can’t market your product then you can’t sell it. Going back to my first point, you need to understand why you’re doing this, so you can then create a brand identity; this is an old school classic but one of the most effective ways of marketing. On top of this, grow a presence on social media, create a website, build a PR list potentially all before you launch, this could help lead to pre-sales if you choose to make this an option.

When you are going to source your fabric for your swimwear collection, the most popular materials tend to be polyester nylon and polyamide, some with have some lycra, spandex or elastane worked into them. However, there are some key factors it must have, it must have four way stretch which allows it to stretch vertically and horizontally as well as parallel and perpendicular. It also needs to be resilient and recover well after being used, quality swimwear should be able to maintain its original structure after being stretched out without going all flimsy.

Designing and production will be easier once you have all the facts in front of you, however swimwear is still tricky. If this is your first time trying it, find swimwear designers and ask for advice, or perhaps try working with a technical designer to help bring your ideas to life. At the end of the day it comes down to manufacturers which we have written about in the past, once again when you go the manufacturer have everything with you and do your research to avoid to ripped off.

So, do you think you’d give swimwear a chance?

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