27th June 2022

Underlines Interview

Thank you for the interview this month UNDERLINES MAGAZINE!

Such a lovely chance to share about our journey through and out of the pandemic, the learnings along the way and our new community initiatives making waves throughout the Intimate Apparel product development sector.

For the full scoop, you can read the article at https://underlinesmagazine.com/2022/06/17/the-friday-interview/

 

27th May 2022

Pantee for designing out waste!

Super excited to shout out PANTEE this month for our client feature!

We connected with Pantee back in May 2020 when we were both part of an expert panel discussion for the Sustainable Fashion Collective, discussing starting an underwear brand, sustainable fabrics and the current opportunities in the Intimate Apparel sector.

PANTEE stand for a circular economy by taking pre consumer waste T-shirt stock (over production, cancelled orders etc.) and turning it into underwear. They design out the waste, ensuring all resources are kept in the system.

Pantee's fresh perspective and raw energy for innovating a way to use a waste element of the supply chain and turn it into a brand new and completely different product continues to inspire and galvanise us! Embodying the crux of true regenerative innovation and transformation by bringing two things together which before then had been entirely separate. It reminds us of the power of connections outside of our usual circles and systems and how the answer is not about creating or doing more of the same but looking at what we already have and changing our relationship to it.

" True innovation occurs when things are put together for the first time that had been separate " Arthur Koestler & John Smythies (1969)

Proud to have watched Pantee's journey and recognition in British Vogue, The Independent, Hello Magazine and more, we relished the opportunity to connect again with Pantee this year to support refining the fit and sizing of their now established favourite core lines.

As a fellow member of the 1% FOR THE PLANET movement and recently joining our ECOSYSTEM INCUBATOR in the 'Ones to Watch' category in the Drapers Sustainable Fashion awards, being able to collaborate in alignment and inject our technical expertise at just the right moment  is what we're all about!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8th March 2022

Standing for feminine leadership

It's International Women's Day and we are taking this opportunity to celebrate our belief and vision for personal and planetary healing by embracing feminine leadership.

The natural energy that flows through all humans is ONE with the planet and the natural world, the trees and the oceans. We have been taught for some time now that natural feminine and maternal qualities such as feeling, tenderness, nurturing, rage and passionate expression need to be made smaller and controlled. We have been taught to not be in our bodies, not to allow the natural flow and force of energy surging through us. When a human does this they can become traumatised, stuck, anxious and depressed. It is very painful to hold these energies internally and can lead to numbing or coping behaviours such as addictions, including over consumption. It is very difficult to give outwardly and love others and our planet when we are in survival mode.When we dismiss and oppress the feminine we are also dismissing Mother Nature. To value nature, we must first honour the feminine.

" Ecofeminism is an integral facet of the women's movement because it addresses the severing of women and Mother Nature and the exploration of both" Lissa Brown

Through our '1% for the Planet' commitment, we have donated to two fantastic organisations this year, who are working on the ground to ensure a positive and thriving change in our planetary issues by working directly and closely with women whose environments are being the most effected:

WEA (WOMENS EARTH ALLIANCE)

WEA is on a mission to protect our environment and end the climate crisis and ensure a just and thriving world by empowering women's leadership. In some of the most environmentally threatened places in the world, WEA leaders are defending forests and rivers, saving threatened indigenous seeds, launching sustainable farms, conserving coral reefs, and protecting land rights. The model identifies grassroots women leaders working on the frontlines to reverse climate change and protect their communities' natural resources, livelihoods, and health. WEA invest in their long-term leadership through training, funding, and networks of support. These women leaders spread their solutions to many others for years beyond project investments - creating a ripple effect that benefits women’s communities, regions, our Earth, and future generations.

WEN (WOMENS ENVIRONMENTAL NETWORK)

Wen acts to achieve equality, justice and joy at the point where gender and environmental issues meet. They work both in London and nationally to support women and grass-root movements with the mission achieve environmental justice, and we do this through providing women with equal access to knowledge, resources and opportunities to better their day-to-day experience.

" We are either going to have a future where women lead the way to make peace with the Earth or we are not going to have a human future at all". Vandana Shiva

 

 

25th February 2022

The Ecosystem Incubator

Introducing the Ecosystem Incubator, a collaboration space for sustainable and regenerative fashion.

We connected with Rachel Sheila Kan, founder of the space and movement back in 2020 through our aligned ethos and vision for a fashion design and development industry with regenerated systems, working with the flow of life: with nature and our human nature as opposed to against it.

Bold Intimates has been an active contributor in building out the Intimate Apparel niche/'tree' ever since, alongside our peer Emmaline Vaughan Ronson of Source Lingerie. You can listen to both Nicola and Emmaline's podcasts in discussion with The Ecosystem Incubator now to learn more about the vision and to be a part of this growing niche branch of the Ecosystem.

In Nicola's podcast, she discusses in detail concepts of circularity, shifting mindsets and reconnection to the human experience as a starting point for building a new healthier future for us all and our planet. We are not stuck in the current systems that are not working, we can create and be a part of the emerging new systems, simply by tuning into what feels true for us.

We speak about our vision for the Intimate Apparel Technical Collective (our niche within a niche) and the power of making aligned and authentic connections that can then ripple out into the larger Intimate Apparel and fashion ecosystems.

" For a considered, holistic life and human centric approach to the industry delve in here, the birth of a new industry space is upon us"

Rachel Sheila Kan, founder of CIRCULAR EARTH and THE ECOSYSTEM INCUBATOR.

To find out more about the Ecosystem Incubator in a collaborative networking setting you can join a 'try it on' intro session for your fashion business every Friday at 1.30pm GMT.

Go to theecosystemincubator.com for more details.

 

 

 

 

 

20th January 2022

The IA Technical Collective is born….

Towards the end of 2021 we began to feel strongly that we wanted to stand for empowering and regenerating the product development sector of the Intimate Apparel industry. We knew that there was more that could be done and there was still what felt like a lot of disconnect in the industry, especially between direct peers.

We set about building a network of like minded, conscious designers, pattern cutters, technicians and machinists from all areas of the industry and also the globe. We wanted to bring together aligned product creators who truly hold people and the planet and the core of their values and believe in the power of building intimate garments with authenticity, accuracy, integrity, trust and above all a human connection.

The Intimate Apparel Technical Collective was born and we met for the first time at our 'seed gathering' this month where the founding members were able to connect, introduce themselves and share ideas of what we want from this space.

Coming away truly inspired and galvanised by our peers, our goal now is to nurture this Collective of professionals for our niche skillset, to create a safe and welcoming space where we can connect, share, celebrate, collaborate and also ask for support!

We've set up monthly online gatherings where we have an opportunity for real time face to face connection and also a Slack group with channels for news, sharing, quick tech help and work opportunities so we can feel connected and supported on the move and whatever we are doing.

We believe deeply in the power of the feeling technician, who is able to combine technical precision with the full human experience to allow the flow of creativity to come to life in a supported and loving way and we recognise the importance of community to support a sustainable and thriving flow of life throughout the eco system that is the Intimate Apparel industry.

If you are an Intimate Apparel technical designer, technician, pattern cutter, grader or machinist and would like to hear more or join our next monthly online gathering, please do get in touch at hello@iatechnicalcollective.com

Whatever level of experience or particular strengths you have, we'd love to hear from you! Together we really are stronger.

Come curious.

Leave connected.

 

 

 

 

 

 

17th November 2021

COP 26- reconnect to our shared humanity

In the wake of the COP26 summit we are sitting with a range of emotions and reflecting on our core belief that how we feel and how we choose to show up in the world has the power to enact positive change.

We are reminded of the power of like minded connections and alignment and our drive to stand for taking responsibility for how we feel is stronger than ever. Whilst government and systemic policy is necessary and may not always be where we need it to be, we can drive actual change right now, every day, by fully expressing ourselves and remembering our shared humanity. Political representation is ultimately in service to this and we need the courage of individuals to continue to stand for what they believe to be true.

Understanding that how we personally feel determines our experience in the world and how we show up is not a new concept in building intimate apparel garments. We know that our undergarments play a special role in supporting us in our most intimate and vulnerable places. On some level we have always known that a bra wire digging in or an itchy gusset makes us feel uncomfortable, annoyed and restricted and in turn that impacts our relationship with that garment and ourselves and how we go about our day.

So with this knowing comes a great opportunity for Intimate Apparel designers to recognise the wearer's experience on an acute sensual and emotional level. Those designers and brands that can connect with this essence have the ability to create products which support, heal and guide real emotional and physical needs rather than continuing to fuel the current addictions to self image, validation, speed or low cost.

We can create products with so much value that they have the power to shape our day, on a level which even the consumer may not always be aware of. They can have the power to shift mindsets and halt purchases of anything which is less meaningful. This means designing with complete integrity, being so aligned with our emotional experience as creators and wearers that we use that to guide the products we bring into being.

Designers are used to working with constraints, what is being asked of us now is to shift the focus from the constraints of margin, profit and delivery deadlines to constraints required for personal, collective and planetary healing and evolution. Trust your instincts, your intuition, your unique humanness and let this flow through our industries, homes and communities and through the products you design and bring into being.

We have so much power if we choose to use it.

10th October 2021

Huha undies infused with zinc oxide

We are super excited to share that we have been working with HUHA underwear this year, who are based in Canada.

HUHA set out to revolutionise daily underwear by saying goodbye to synthetic fabrics which trap heat and moisture and leave us feeling hot, itchy and uncomfortable in our most sensitive areas.

HUHA underwear uses natural and renewable TENCEL lyocell and modal fibres, which have been certified as biodegradable and compostable under industrial, home, soil and marine conditions, thus they can fully revert back to nature, which we totally adore! Additionally the special green liner fabric is infused with mineral zinc oxide, which has natural healing, soothing and antibacterial properties. This means these undies are super soft, breathable and keep us cool and comfortable. As a result, we feel supported and confident to go about our day and for whatever emotions, challenges and opportunities present themselves.

After epic success with their key mineral styles: the Cheeky, Brief and Thong, HUHA reached out to us to support extending their range to more sizes and more styles. We are thrilled to have been able to help refine the styling, sizing, construction and fit as this brand rapidly grows, to ensure these garments fit like a glove for a broad size range of XXS- XXXL.

With a new 'Low Profile' Thong recently launched, this is a direction we are very excited about! We worked closely with the team to develop and elevate the construction of a more subtle, seamless style, which is ideal for wearing under tighter clothes, for being active or for when you want that second skin, invisible and enveloped feel.

A deep dive approach to exploring the sensual experience and requirements of daily underwear means that fabrics, elastics, trims, seams, stitches, sizing and style lines have all been developed with meticulous consideration, to ensure these are vulva loving garments, working effortlessly in flow with you and the earth.

HUHA have recently become stocked by Urban Outfitters and with many new styles in work we can't wait to see how this brand grows over the coming months and years. Watch this space! These undies are making waves and prove we can create beautiful and quality garments that feel amazing whilst working harmoniously with the human body and the planet.

 

"Working with Bold Intimates has been a dream come true! We had difficulty finding an expert who not only understood but also appreciated the sensitive nature of intimates-design. Since our main goal as a brand is to create intimates that are better suited to our sensitive regions, having Bold Intimates on board with their keen attention to detail and utmost care in fit and construction has been a match made in heaven. We've thoroughly enjoyed working with Nicola, she doesn't miss a beat! "

Alexa Suter, Founder at HUHA

27th August 2021

Introducing Cou Cou… comfy, cute, conscious

It is with great joy that we introduce Cou Cou Intimates to our portfolio and followers.

Launched this summer, Cou Cou set out to embrace the gap between our underwear and lingerie drawer and to re- imagine comfortable and cute daily underwear that is kind to our bodies and planet, embracing and celebrating the full embodied female experience.

Our product development journey with Cou Cou has been authentic, aligned and collaborative, which ultimately has allowed the creation of something unique and powerful with passion, truth and love.

Founder, Rose Colcord, has a unique ability to see and seek out fresh opportunities with a combination of holistic feeling and blue sky thinking. Her unbridled drive to create something that feels right in her heart and on her body is a true inspiration. To work alongside Rose as she learnt and compassionately navigated the traditional ways of the industry with new conscious and sustainable practices has been a gift of mutual learning.

Elevated, comfortable intimates were born using (GOTS certified) 100% organic cotton, beautifully delicate and soft pointelle and a romantic french lace trim. The core collection, available in white and black, encompasses refined and flattering shapes so while the cotton nurtures the skin with the rhythm of beauty and purity, allowing it to breathe and relax, the styles give us full expression to fearlessly step into the power of all that we are!

"Bold Intimates has been on the journey building Cou Cou since day one. We had a strong vision and high standards for the collection in wanting to bridge the gap between our lingerie and day underwear. Nicola not only played a key role in perfecting our bespoke material but her technical expertise, precision and attention represented a level of passion and enthusiasm which is hard to find. I cannot thank Bold Intimates enough for exceeding what I dreamed of for the core collection and for truly believing in Cou Cou from the beginning "

Rose Colcord, Founder at COU COU INTIMATES

 

19th June 2021

Climate Neutral..what’s it all about?

Being 'Climate Neutral', reducing our Carbon impact. What does this really mean for fashion brands?

Currently the planet has too much carbon dioxide in it's atmosphere, which is the main factor in the heating up of the planet. Humans have abused the earth's natural carbon sources, through increased fossil fuel extraction for energy, transport and to power industry, thus releasing huge amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Further more, we have depleted the earth's natural ability to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by not taking care of our natural carbon sinks such as forests, soils and the oceans.

So what can the fashion industry do to change and make an impact fast!? Being aligned with Government policy and regularity profession bodies working for a positive change at a systemic level is an important factor in reducing carbon emissions but unfortunately it’s not working fast enough! The choices and collaboration of brands, suppliers, producers and consumers TODAY can help to accelerate emission reductions by bringing awareness to our supply chain and how we work together.

The fashion industry accounts for approx. 4% of greenhouse gas emissions and when this is broken down into sectors, 70% of the emissions are from UPSTREAM activities. This means supply chain, including RAW MATERIAL PRODUCTION + PROCESSING. (globalfashionagenda , 2020). Whilst achieving comprehensive, accurate information and transparency in this area can be challenging for designers and buyers, we know that yarn preparation, dyeing, finishing and fibre production tend to be the most carbon intensive phases.

Many fashion brands overlook their responsibility and impact on these areas and focus on accountability for their own operations (such as office, transport, retail) only. To really be making a maximum and immediate impact towards climate action, brands need to bring awareness and accountability to carbon emissions throughout all operations, including material source and production.

Start up brands, although have the huge challenge of learning a lot, quickly, are actually very well placed to be able to make a clear, conscious impact without the ways of the 'old systems' holding them back. Supply chains can be considered thoroughly from the beginning and authentic, transparent and sustainable partnerships with suppliers established. New and small brands can learn and adapt quicker to the current opportunities and limitations to embrace a carbon neutral supply chain, thus setting themselves up for sustainability and longevity.

Micro and small businesses make up over 99% of businesses in the UK and by watching how they are operating through the current challenges, we can get vital insights which governments can then have the opportunity to cement into policy.

For further reading, check out:

@beclimateneutral : provides tools and a framework to help brands to measure and offset and reduce their emissions, including upstream supply chain (see Scope 3 criteria).

@fash_rev : the global movement for a fashion industry that values people and planet over profit. Fantastic source for providing clear facts and communication tools.

@sustainable_fashion_collective : a holistic and expert members club offering vast and in depth resources on all areas of sustainable fashion. Particularly great for start ups and entrepreneurs looking to learn about what’s involved in starting a brand and how best to approach it in the most eco responsible way.

@thesustainableangle : support projects with a focus on sustainability in fabrics and textiles and founders of #futurefabricsexpo 22 June- 2 July 2021! A fantastic in person and virtual destination for clear and educational information on sustainable materials, networking and advice, with supplier insight.

 

29th March 2021

Project Pico

Full of delight to introduce our collaboration with PICO to refine their range of organic cotton underwear.

We love the PICO project as it works directly with a small fair-trade garment factory in Southern India, using organic cotton sourced from fairtrade farmers’ cooperatives.

PICO compassionately and respectfully follows and flows with every step of the organic cotton journey from sowing the seeds, management of the soil and water, harvesting by hand, ginning, spinning, knitting and finally either leaving fabric un-dyed or using Oeko-Tex and GOTS certified dyes within a zero waste unit.

Additionally for some items they have collaborated with the wonderful natural dyer Kathryn Davey in Dublin, creating some truly mesmerising and natural colours and effects.

We carried out an in-depth conscious, technical analysis of the current line alongside Isobel and Pheobe and considering all current customer and wearer feedback. We were able to review and elevate the fit, construction, sizing and wearer experience for current styles as well as introduce a new Full crop top style, with improved lift and enhanced support and comfort, working to ensure that these garments flow with the natural body as well as they do with the sustainable manufacturing processes and the communities that produce them.

Finished off with a hand written note and a handspun, hand woven Karunganni cotton bag, the whole process and experience speaks to our hearts and we are so happy to be able to work in this way with like minded brands.

Head to project-pico.com to read more and to check out these beautiful styles!

P.S Nicola's mum is in love with the new Full crop top and has already re-ordered two more for life in Spain!

"We felt really fortunate to work with Nicola and her team and were really impressed with the professionalism and efficiency of their service. Nicola has a very in-depth knowledge of underwear pattern cutting, production and sourcing and helped us to refine and alter our existing styles to make them fit and perform better, without losing the simplicity and aesthetic of our original design. We especially appreciated her guidance and work on grading our patterns and fit testing each style and size on different models to ensure the grade worked across the full size range. We are really delighted with the final outcome and very grateful to Bold Intimates for the work they have done which has given us confidence to release the updated and new styles in the knowledge that they have been thoughtfully designed and tested to fit beautifully and comfortably. "

Isobel Williams- Ellis, Founder at PICO

 

22nd February 2021

Guest Designer for Concepts Paris

The 'Interfiliere Connect' lingerie industry sourcing trade show is in full swing and the Concepts Paris AW22/23 trend book has arrived and it's truly inspirational!

As we eagerly peel back the pages, we consider and reflect upon the authentic and fruitful conversations we have had this passed year and bask in the warm sensation of our community and what we can create together.

We are deeply honoured to have been asked by Jos Berry and Concepts Paris to be the guest designer for this season as we collectively imagine and bring forward new ideas for creating Intimate Apparel in a post Covid landscape.

In response to the Concepts Paris theme of 'Workwear', we presented the important relationship between how we feel and what we choose to wear. We propose that the pandemic era has increased awareness of our range of human emotions and what we need to balance them. We recognise the need for our daily intimate garments to be multi functional, identifying both physical and emotional needs and offering supportive solutions. We show how each material, pattern and construction choice can be considered with explicit intention in order to add up to a full and meaningful experience for the wearer, ensuring garments will be loved and will last.

It is our belief at Bold Intimates that supporting the human experience and our full range of emotions is integral to sustainable health for individuals, communities and our impact on the planet and our purpose is to achieve this through conscious and precise intimate product builds.

We hope you all enjoy the book as much as we do and have a wonderful sourcing and networking season.

11th February 2021

Colour and Sustainability

As technical specialists, we admit that colour is not the primary focus of our work at Bold Intimates, however we are acutely aware of it’s importance and magic!

Colour means something and is experienced in a unique and subjective way by each individual who witnesses it. Colour is not used randomly, it is strategically and passionately selected by designers and artists to stir and connect to an emotion. When we feel creativity deeply, whether it be through art, music or fashion, our hair stands on end. We have engagement and a clarity which brings emotional satisfaction and well being. We believe supporting and nurturing our range of emotions in this way is integral for sustainable health of humans as individuals, our communities and ultimately our impact on the planet. Therefore is it not the soul purpose of the designer to feel an emotion so vividly that the consumer can connect with it?

“ With colour one obtains an energy that seems to stem from witchcraft”  Henri Matisse

So we arrive at the current dilemma, we are hearing a huge frustration amongst Intimate Apparel designers regarding using colour in a responsible way. There is an increasing and alarming awareness that most synthetic materials (and some natural ones!) use chemical dyes which can be toxic and hazardous to both human health and the environment. Alongside this there is the knowledge that we already have a surplus of existing materials available, without producing new ones. Both designers and consumers know they want to make sustainable choices and they also deeply desire to feel something about the product they are investing in.

Designers too often feel that there is a choice to be made between the desired aesthetic and human and planet health. Many mainstream recycled or natural fibre based materials still have a very limited colour offering and with large production minimums and most still use chemical dyes. Natural dyes are often approached with apprehension with a lack of confidence around the palette, the visual possibilities as well as the colour fastness and performance. Essentially, there is currently not enough accessible and transparent information and choice when it comes to sustainable colour for the designer (and ultimately the consumer) to be satiated in their creative process and consequently we are seeing a breakdown of connection between passion and sustainability.

“We have researched natural dyes but have been told by others in the industry that the colour fastness isn’t very good, which in turn encourages the customer to chuck the lingerie, which of course is the least sustainable thing to do."  Georgia Larsen, Founder & Director at Dora Larsen.

As with all sustainability issues, we can only start from where we are today and bring awareness to it. We want to invite this conversation into our community and urge lingerie and swim designers to talk to suppliers and material producers from the heart and with curiosity, consideration and expansion. To work together to explore alternatives for positive growth as we have proven over the last year we are hugely capable of.

Don’t be afraid to ask your material and dye suppliers what systems they have in place to manage their chemical risk and to comply with current regulations and accreditations.  Look out for responsible labelling schemes such as Blue sign, Oekotex and GOTS which work with companies to implement chemical controls and minimise their effluent output. Many suppliers are well underway in innovating non toxic substances and processes who would be delighted to discuss it with you.

Additionally we are seeing a strong resurgence of skilled natural dyers who can work with a variety of raw materials and plant and agricultural ingredients using non-toxic and regenerative dyeing processes. An expert natural dyer is able to create unique recipes, specific to each material and product specification, considering colour, application, visual effect, performance and fastness using ancient techniques. Natural dyeing is a heritage craft with colours proven to last centuries when treated correctly and we are so excited to be seeing the growth in interest, market availability as well as the talented people who know how to use them.

“Inspiring radically positive activism through natural materials & colours"   Botanical Inks natural dye studio, Bristol.

As the demand and appetite increases across the wider industry safer coloured materials will become more available, with more choice and with less restrictive minimums, prices and knowledge gaps. It will take strong, passionate and authentic communication from brands to tell this new non toxic message and story to the consumer. The good news is that we are undergoing a global collective shift and currently there is not only a raw and open mindedness which is unique to this time but there is a real returning appreciation for the colours nature gives us.

Special thanks to all the wonderful pioneering brands and designers we have spoken to who opened the space for authentic conversation around colour and sustainability challenges and to the inspiring natural dyers and artisans for energising us to the possibilities of sustainable, natural colour.

30th November 2020

Bleed red, think green!

What a year for period care! A topic very close to our hearts and vaginas!

We've seen tampon tax be abolished in the UK and Scotland become the first country in the world to allow free and universal access to menstrual products, including tampons and pads, in public facilities, a landmark victory for the global movement against period poverty.

Doing our own bit for period care evolution, during lockdown 1.0 we used our technical knowledge for intimates design and passion for conscious product to work closely with DAME and their community to develop a re-usable period pad for the 21st Century.

Softer, drier and thinner than anything you would have seen before, we are incredibly proud to have been part of the journey to create a conscious, modern solution not only for period care and feminine health but in the fight against period plastic waste.

In the UK alone, 2.1 million single use pads are flushed down toilets every day! That’s 766 million pads a year - or - the equivalent of 3 billion plastic bags ending up in our water ways and finally oceans! Making the switch to reusable pads has never been more important.

 

" Nicola and the Bold Intimates team have been amazing at helping to bring our product to life. Always organised and structured and helped guide us through making a product that we didn't have a huge amount of experience with. Their expertise and rigorous eye for detail has meant we've ended up with something we are really proud of and that customers have been loving. Timings were always as advised and they were very transparent with deliverables and capacity of the team vs what we needed. I really can't recommend Bold Intimates enough, it's been a joy working together! "

Anna Williamson, New Product Development Manager at DAME

 

1st September 2020

Biondi Eco Swimwear

The Biondi London collection, launched in 2013 by former Harvey Nichols buyer, Claudine Davies, has always been synonymous with superlative craftmenship and exemplary fit. Producing high quality pieces encouraging conscious consumption and creating classic and beautiful fashion that will be loved and treasured for years to come!

This summer we celebrate the introduction of Eco fabrics to the swimwear collection, with fabrics made using 82% ECONYL yarns, made from recycled fishing nets and industrial plastic waste. After these nylon plastics have reached the end of their useful life they are recovered, regenerated and transformed by Aquafil into ECONYL, with guaranteed same performance as the original virgin nylon yarns. The new regenerated swim styles sit alongside Biondi's Ready-to-wear collection which is made using natural fibres such as linen, organic cotton and silk.

For Biondi, sustainability means ethical manufacture, everything made by people who are treated fairly, with respect and who are paid well for what they do. Whether manufacturing takes place in the UK, Italy or India, production runs are kept small to keep the carbon footprint as low as possible. Products are made from sustainably-grown or recycled materials, using low impact processes.

Bold Intimates are proud to be a part of Biondi's product development journey to establish responsible and regenerative sourcing routes and ensuring impeccable technical attention to detail to create the most elevated of product fit and feel, meaning these garments continue to feel good and do good!

 

" Bold Intimates' technical expertise is second to none, they can quickly translate our innovative ideas into viable designs. Nicola is quick to understand brand positioning and concepts and communicates with our team efficiently and effectively. Nicola is excellent in fitting sessions and always knows how to fix a pattern that is causing us fit problems. I  love that she has a strong creative side too and we can get valuable input on the aesthetics of the design at the same time. Furthermore, they are passionate about responsible and regenerative sourcing and have been crucial in assisting us with our eco strategy. I highly recommend Bold Intimates who go above and beyond to help the brands they work with "

Claudine Davies, director at BIONDI.

 

 

31st August 2020

Closing the Plastic Loop

Plastic pollution is one of the most pressing environmental issues our planet is facing as the current demand and production of disposable plastic materials is overwhelming the natural worlds ability to deal with them.

It is estimated that 63% of all garments are made from synthetic, plastic fibres (Ellen MacArthur Foundation) such as polyester, which not only are reliant on fossil fuel extraction, but take centuries to break down and release toxic chemicals back into our soils and waters. Furthermore, every time we wash synthetic garments, such as swimwear, small micro plastics are released in the machine and into our water ways causing immense damage to marine life and vital eco systems.

A 2017 report from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimated that 35% of all micro plastics in the ocean come from the laundering of synthetic textiles. One piece of polyester clothing can release 700,000 fibers in a single wash. These microplastic fibers are so small that they pass through the sewage treatment works and they tend to accumulate and act like sponges, soaking up all the toxic elements around them. Many fish and other aquatic animals swallow them, and if those animals eat them, we do too. This combined with pollution emitted during the production process makes fashion one of the most polluting industries in the world.

The plastic issue is so vast and complex within the fashion industry that a multi pronged approach is required to tackling it. The responsibility starts with designers as our vision prescribes which materials are used and how products are created. We have a choice to consider where the raw materials are coming from, are they sustainable and where can we use recycled/recovered/regenerated materials that would otherwise be wasted and harmful to the environment. For swimwear and sportswear, where synthetic fibres have the benefit of providing increased performance, strength, stretch and breathability (and therefore increase garment longevity, which in turn reduces the environmental impact), we can seek to use recycled and regenerated yarns, ensuring that no virgin synthetic fibres are being produced and we are circulating the existing plastic and keeping it out of the environment.

Only 9% of the plastic ever made has been recycled. (R.Geyer, J. Jambeck, et al, 2017 SHIFT) which means there is still a lot out there that can be re-used!

Aftercare of synthetic garments has a HUGE part to play also, in fact the biggest impact of clothing on the environment happens after we get them home! As well as loving, repairing, re-useing and sharing garments we can also reduce the environmental impact considerably by the way we wash them. It is not necessary to machine wash swimwear after every wear, rinsing in water or soaking in an eco wash before hanging to dry is sufficient (we love the CLOTHES DOCTOR Eco wash No.5, specifically designed for synthetic and performance fabrics) and by being careful with suncream application we can extend the time we can wear swimwear for before it needs to be washed. When garments are finally ready to be machine washed, keeping the temperature cool helps the fabrics to last longer (heat breaks down fibres) and also saves energy being used for the cycle. Washing your clothes with cold water on a quick cycle uses half the energy of washing warm. Using a bag (such as GUPPYBAG) helps to reduce and catch micro plastic particles that would be otherwise be released into the machine.

Finally, there are some incredible companies and teams out there dedicated to cleaning our oceans, rivers and coastlines everyday, why not consider how you can directly support and give back to these communities. 4OCEAN is a fellow One percent for the Planet member and is a professional clean up crew which have removed over 10 million pounds of plastic from the oceans in 3 years! WASTE FREE OCEANS is a non-profit dedicated to collecting, sorting and transforming ocean plastics into brand new meaningful products, thus mitigating the impact on the environment and natural resources!

With swimwear season well underway, albeit at a modest pace compared to previous recent years, we have an opportunity to pause and fundamentally and systemically reconsider the way we design, produce and consume plastics as well as taking responsibility for what happens post consumer: a transition towards a circular economy for plastic in which it never becomes waste or pollution.

18th August 2020

Masterclass in Producing a Responsible Underwear Line

We have collaborated with the Sustainable Fashion Collective to create a Masterclass packed with technical tutorials that give a step by step guide to creating and producing an Underwear line responsibly.

We share knowledge and insights into sustainable sourcing and precise and mindful pattern cutting, sizing, fitting, grading and sewing. As always, our approach to building intimate garments places the focus on the body and the human experience and comes from a place of authentic consideration, slow fashion and integrity. Combined with our extensive industry experience and technical know-how, these tutorials will help guide and inspire anyone looking to build an elevated meaningful experience into their intimate garments.

We are joined in this Masterclass by passionate female founders Maina Cisse of THE UNDERARGUMENT, Kristen Anderson of KRSTN NDRS , Primrose Matheson of BEDSTRAW AND MADDER and Stephanie Devine of THE VERY GOOD BRA,  all of which have grown powerful and conscious underwear businesses based on their own personal experience, strong values and a lot of trial and error.

These lessons, tips and discussions are a fantastic insight for anyone starting an underwear label and are available to all professional member of the Sustainable Fashion Collection, where you will find an absolutely vast amount of valuable and transparent industry knowledge. We love being part of this like-minded community, sharing advice, techniques, ideas and experiences, creating a greater accessibility and visibility across the sustainable fashion space. Together we really are stronger.

20th July 2020

1% for the Planet

We have joined the global movement and commitment to our planet to be 1% better.

As we believe that no product should be created without positively effecting our planet and communities, alongside consciously creating garments at each stage of the product development journey, we donate the equivalent of 1% of all revenue to 1% for the Planet, so that every piece of work we do and every garment we build has a direct impact for non-profit organisations on the ground making a real difference.

1% for the Planet connects those that want to take action with those doing it, to ensure a thriving future for our planet and generations to come.

We are showing up, listening, learning and fighting for a better future where the clothes we design, build and wear exist in a cherished union with our planet. We will keep you updated on the partnerships we make and our donations in action!

For more information and to join the movement, head to onepercentfortheplanet.org @1percentftp

#BeOnePercentBetter #CreateOnePercentBetter

 

30th June 2020

We, the curious & the future

This month we are proud as punch to have been invited by Jos Berry at Eurovet's Interfiliere to join one of their weekly webinar talks, with the spotlight on designers!

With a sense of movement and creative juices rippling through the industry and new ideas rising, it feels like exactly the right time to be connecting with our peers to share curiosities, concerns, challenges and visions for the future of the Intimate Apparel industry.

We discussed the importance of re-connecting with our humanness and creative soul and passion to bring meaning back to our products and development systems. Can we bring with us our learnings from the challenges of coronavirus times, the re-connection to our bodies, emotions and the natural world and allow these to guide us rather than margin and the strict and tired fashion systems we are used to.

We recognised the success of new, start up brands and how well they connect with their audience and pioneer more sustainable and responsible product from a place of story telling and meaning. Can the rest of the industry learn from this fresh and more holistic approach, building seasonless products that not only seduce the heart but speak to the consumers soul and mind. The consumer is ready, waiting and demanding us to design from a present place of human experience, rather than trying to shoehorn eco products into broken systems and fast fashion calendars. The consumer knows that investing in what you really love and believe in is the new measure of social and environmental responsibility.

Ultimately we celebrated that we have what we need, a vast pool of skills, talents, networks and systems already exist and with a rapidly advancing digital era we have speedy access to them. We recognised the need to cherish each-other and respect each person and process involved in creating product. We understand how a meaningful and functioning system is a community and we must lift each other up. The power of authentic connection, alignment, transparency and collaboration will allow us to elevate our souls, designs and impact.

Here's to bringing back the magic, but not the circus!

 

Watch the full talk online https://youtu.be/qkFBE0E12W4

 

 

 

21st May 2020

Eco underwear panel discussion

We are proud and passionate members of the Sustainable Fashion Collective, a collaborative community sharing holistic guidance and expert advice for creating ethical fashion, dedicated to constantly being conscious of our practices and seeking out new ways to be responsible

This week we were totally thrilled to join their monthly networking event, in the form of an online expert panel discussion on Eco underwear and lingerie, alongside conscious underwear brands THE UNDERARGUMENT (empowering our uniqueness through the lingerie that we wear and pioneers of 'The Anti-Casting') and PANTEE (turning pre-consumer rejected t shirt stocks, otherwise destined for landfill or incineration, into stylish underwear).

We delved into the current consumer mindset, the type of materials we want against our most intimate areas, as well as considering the challenges and opportunities of starting an eco lingerie brand in the current climate, including responsible material sourcing, sustainable practices, sizing and inclusivity.

Collectively championing slow and considered product development, integrity and authenticity, it was an absolute dream to connect with these like minded brands on our mission and message.

The chat is still available to view on YouTube until the end of May and after that the content will form part of the Sustainable Fashion Collective’s Underwear Masterclass coming later in the year!

Some really great insights for anyone looking to start a lingerie brand or wanting to learn more about eco underwear product development!

23rd April 2020

Extending the life of intimate garments

It’s fashion revolution week and we are reminded of the impact that our culture of fast fashion, consumption and disposability has on the planet. We buy 60% more clothing than we did 15 years ago, and only wear it for half as long! This trend continues to drive over 10% of global carbon emissions, 92 million tonnes of landfill waste and 20% of all industrial water pollution worldwide!

WRAP advises that by wearing an item of clothing for an extra 9 months you can reduce its overall carbon, water and waste footprints by 20-30%.

As designers and producers, we have a responsibility to re-invent how garments are designed and to create smarter products that will last and bring real value to the wearer. We are being called to create season-less products that perform, feel great and are aligned with our consumers’ needs. This means investing in quality materials and workmanship, produced with integrity, but it also means designing with simplicity and function in mind. Solution driven features such as a classic and supportive fit or built in adjustability will promote comfort and versatility and create a more engaged and positive experience for the wearer, therefore extending the amount of time the garment is worn for.

We also strongly believe in championing after care of our products, to cherish and refresh garments that already exist and to keep them out of landfills. For more intimate garments such as underwear and swimwear, which are worn directly against the skin and may pick up additional stains and odours, there are specific solutions available.

For underwear and swimwear, we would recommend washing on a cool machine wash (max. 30 degrees) and using a bag, such as GUPPYFRIEND to catch microplastic particles that are shed from synthetic materials and would otherwise end up in the ocean. For bras, handwashing ensures delicate fabrics are preserved and prevents trims and components such as underwires coming loose or snagging other areas of the garments. It also ensures minimal colour fading and cross staining therefore bras stay brighter and fresher in appearance for longer.

We love the CLOTHES DOCTOR Eco washes, made with plant-derived ingredients in the UK and recommend their No.4 wash for hand washing lingerie. It contains an all-natural formula which cleanses, refreshes and renews delicate garments, and is particularly great for nourishing and restoring natural fibres such as silk. For swimwear and sportswear, their No.5 wash is ideal, it has been engineered with leading sports brands to be the first natural sportswear wash. Its fresh formula helps odors, bacteria, and fungal spores be destroyed with natural ingredients such as tea tree, lemon grass and eucalyptus.

We want our consumers to wear their garments until they fall apart and when they can’t be worn anymore to be mindful of how the materials can be reused or recycled. There are some great initiatives around for intimate garments to ensure the materials are re-used rather than ending up in landfills.

BRAVISSIMO run a bra recycling scheme in their UK stores and any old or unwanted bras can be brought here. The bras are then sent to SOEX a recycling provider, who focus on innovative ways to recycle and prolong the life of textiles. If the bras can be worn again they are distributed to women in need around the world. If they are beyond wear the bras are broken down and the different parts separated for re-cycling and re-use. As well as promoting circularity of textiles to our consumers this is also a great way for designers, brands and retailers to dispose of old fit, sales and press samples at the end of each season!

Please note sadly Bravissimo stores are currently shut due to the COVID-19 situation but hang on to those donations until collections can resume!