AUTHORED BY: Cara Newhart, Never Skip Brunch
This content was created by a Denver Style Magazine Contributor. The opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect the views of Denver Style Magazine.
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I sat down with Brennan Curtis & Holly Hayes, founders of H&K Swimwear to talk about their story, the process of launching their brand, and get a little behind the scenes. I initially met Brennan & Holly in college, and it's been so fun to see their process in taking H&K from just an idea to an amazing swimwear brand. I've had the chance to work with them on a couple photo shoots, and I am seriously so excited about what they're doing.
How did H&K Swimwear come about?
One day while at work, we were texting about the trouble of finding a swimsuit that fit us appropriately and would last longer than one season. There aren't many options for young women that don't want to wear a teeny bikini or the latest brazilian style bottoms so we created H&K Swimwear to fill that void. A little over a year later, we just launched on June 12th and couldn't be more excited to share our designs with everyone.
How would you describe your designs?
Classy. Timeless. Chic. We designed the bikinis to remain on trend whilst providing moderate to full coverage. All of our bikinis are seamless and double-lined providing a modern, sporty touch as well as allowing all of the pieces to be intermixed effortlessly. Every top will match every bottom so you can create the perfect bikini that fits you.
What is H&K Swimwear's primary philosophy?
Our brand's philosophy is swim with purpose- purposeful in design, fit, quality, and sustainability. Every decision we make is geared towards the purpose of choosing the best option for our customers and the environment. We strive to be socially conscious in all aspects of our business from choosing eco-friendly fabrics to donating a portion of all our proceeds to charity.
Which is your favorite design?
Brennan - I'm obsessed with the Amalfi strappy top and the Cayman strappy bottoms. I love how sporty and chic it looks on! It is super comfortable as the front is designed similar to a bralette and you can't miss the fun detail of the tie on the back which makes it so unique.
Holly - I love the Barcelona ruffle top and Madrid rusched bottoms. The ruffles on the top add the perfect touch of feminine, flirty, and fun. Plus, the rusching on the front of the bottoms match the front of the top to make the perfect bikini set.
What makes your suits unique?
In addition to a better fit, our soft fabric is eco-friendly, made from post-consumer materials such as abandoned fishing nets discarded to the bottom of the ocean. Though made from recycled materials, our fabric is of premium quality, with twice as much elastane as most other suits on the market, so your bikini will last many seasons without sagging. And if that's not enough, a portion of every purchase is donated to the charity of your choice, out of the three charities we are highlighting that month.
What do you hope to achieve with H&K Swimwear?
We feel strongly about encouraging everyone to love their bodies. Our favorite quote is to "embrace your own kind of beautiful." We hope to empower and connect with our customers through H&K Swimwear. Therefore, we do not photoshop or enhance the models bodies in our photos in hopes to have an impact on how swimwear is marketed.
How did the two of you meet?
We studied at the University of Oklahoma together but we didn't become friends until our study abroad trip. We were two girls who shared a love of traveling so we decided to head to Italy, Spain, and Belgium together prior to studying outside of London. We quickly became best friends and have traveled to New Zealand and California since then. All our travels provide much of the inspiration of our swimwear designs. All of our tops and bottoms are named after the city that helped us create that design.
What have you learned from this experience?
Starting a company is hard. We had a really hard time finding a manufacturer and when we found one, they did not meet expectations. We have encountered set back after set back so it feels very surreal to have finally launched. We have put everything into our company and feel very fortunate to have this opportunity. As we grow, it will allow us to make a bigger impact in giving back. We aim to change the way swimwear is made and marketed.
What else would you like our readers to know?
100% of the proceeds from our t-shirt sales go directly to the charity you choose! If you can't purchase a bikini, we urge you to buy a t-shirt to help a great cause. We partner with three charities at a time, all of our charities have strong ratings and make a huge impact on so many lives. Plus, you get a super soft V-neck from Next Level, that can easily be worn over a bikini when heading to the pool.