Sustainability, ethical production, and inclusivity are the core tenets of 25-year-old Ellie Wynhoven’s swimwear label, Swim by Elly. Driven by a passion for the environment, each swimsuit is made from Italian ECONYL, a regenerated fabric made from marine waste, such as fishing nets, and discarded nylon. It is a material that can be recycled and remolded many times over.
Swim by Elly’s products are also handmade and made to order, with customized measurements based on the individual customer. This strategy removes the waste generated from unsold stock and ensures every swimsuit has a perfect fit.
The label’s strong focus on sustainability stood out to the judges, clinching Swim by Elly the Sustainable Business Award, sponsored by Kenstra. “Swim by Elly is a business that excels in many areas but especially sustainability,” judge Susie Thomas said. “Every aspect of their products, processes, and environment is focused on being sustainable. We were impressed that sustainability is top of mind in every action and decision this business makes.”
The Sustainable Business Award, sponsored by Kenstra, recognizes businesses that demonstrate sustainable and circular economy initiatives that are good for business, the community, and the environment. These initiatives include designing products that are durable, reusable, and made from recycled or recovered materials.
Buoyed by its success on social media, Swim by Elly has already expanded to become an international operation with the label selling to markets in the United States, Europe, and Asia.
Ms. Wynhoven’s motivation for beginning Swim by Elly began with her own struggle to find swimwear in her size and a desire to see the fashion industry become more inclusive. She saw the need for a swimwear label that prioritizes people and wanted to create an environment that was both safe and welcoming for them. At the same time, Ms. Wynhoven had become aware of the issues surrounding the trend toward fast fashion, including wastefulness and the poor conditions often experienced by the labor force. She wanted to instead provide customers with a more affordable and ethical swimwear option.
Swim by Elly strives to represent bodies of all shapes and sizes and currently caters for children, women, and men in sizes 4-26. The label has plans to continue expanding its range to accommodate all abilities and gender identities.
For more information, head to Swim by Elly’s website.