FASH­ION.

EVER TRIED TO FEEL LIKE A BOND GIRL IN A RASHIE? WHILE STYLE AND SUN-SMARTS HAVEN’T AL­WAYS BEEN THE BEST OF BEACH PLAY­MATES, A NEW RANGE IS CHANG­ING THAT

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Gold Coast Eye - - EYE CONTENTS - WORDS: CHAN TAY LO­GAN

In a sea of biki­nis, a Queens­land swimwear la­bel is bring­ing back the eter­nally el­e­gant one-piece. The seed was planted early for UNE PIECE founder Carly Brown, who had a bap­tism of surf-and-sand on the Sun­shine Coast be­fore mov­ing to London.

“My fa­ther is an avid (and very good) surfer, so we spent lots of time grow­ing up at the beach,” she says.

“My amaz­ing mother was al­ways re­ally care­ful with our skin as she was very fair – there was al­ways slip, slop, slap in our house­hold.

“When I was in my twen­ties I lived in London for al­most seven years and dis­cov­ered a real pas­sion for sum­mer (given how cold and wet London could be).

“Sum­mer hol­i­days in Europe are an­other level of plan­ning and fo­cus for women. They have a reper­toire of swimwear that they take away with them and this al­most al­ways in­cludes a one-piece.

“I quickly be­came cap­ti­vated with the el­e­gance and sim­plic­ity of a one-piece com­pared to the Aussie ob­ses­sion with biki­nis.

“What I also re­alised is that women feel more con­fi­dent and em­pow­ered to en­joy the beach in a one-piece. They feel more beau­ti­ful.”

Back in Bris­bane, that re­al­i­sa­tion was enough for Carly to ap­ply her brand­build­ing back­ground to launch­ing her own la­bel.

“I’ve worked for a lot of other com­pa­nies in my ca­reer cre­at­ing brands from scratch and man­ag­ing global brands like Revlon, Coca Cola and Uber, so I have a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence in prod­uct de­sign and brand de­vel­op­ment,” she says.

“It’s a pas­sion … but I’d never worked in fash­ion.

“My hus­band was the true cat­a­lyst for this all to hap­pen.

“One day he asked me, if I could do any­thing what would it be?

“From there I knew – to start my own busi­ness and cre­ate some­thing that was truly beau­ti­ful and that would make a dif­fer­ence to women.”

UNE PIECE launched with a sin­gle “icon” piece, the Orig­i­nal Sexie Rashie, a fig­ure-hug­ging flat­terer with in-built con­fi­dence boost.

“I lit­er­ally worked on it for more than a year to get it to the fi­nal piece it is to­day,” Carly says.

“It went through 11 de­sign it­er­a­tions be­fore it hit the mar­ket and was tested and tested and tested on real women to make sure it hit the mark.”

Cur­rently hard at work on her next col­lec­tion, Carly says the con­nec­tion with her cus­tomers re­lies on keep­ing it real.

“I think shop­ping for swimwear can be a chore for women. It’s that sink­ing feel­ing that it looks great on the hanger (or on the model) but when you try it on it just doesn’t look the same,” she says.

“I want to make sure women never have that sink­ing feel­ing.

“We are cre­at­ing a brand that em­braces and cel­e­brates diver­sity of beauty and healthy body im­age.

“This is a bit against the grain for the fash­ion in­dus­try, but I want UNE PIECE to be a force for good for women.”

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