While our passion for fashion and swimwear are infinite, our planet’s resources aren’t. For this reason, we feel a strong commitment to doing our part.
Our swimwear is made from 100% recycled material ethically produced in our Milan Atelier. However, we believe being an eco-conscious company is more than just that.
In this page, you can read all about our sustainable efforts and learn more about the large impact that fashion pollution has on our planet.
Our hi-tech revolutionary, recycled eco-friendly PL fabric is made from pre and post-consumer waste. By doing this, we keep non-biodegradable materials like plastic from going into landfills and the ocean.
It is engineered to be ultra-chlorine and sunblock/oil resistant and to provide UV protection (USPF 50+). Its premier recycled polyester yarn combined with a soft touch and 4-way stretch means it feels as good as it performs. It features muscle control, shape retention, and much more! It’s a fabric choice you can feel good about.
For every kg of yarn used to produce 4 meters of sustainable fabric 48 bottles are recycled; thus, every kg of yarn from PET bottles used, prevents 1,75 kg of CO2 to be released into the atmosphere.
By creating high quality and timeless designs, we hope our line of versatile swimsuits will encourage our customers to keep using their timeless garments and simply increasing their collection of suits and accessories. This allows for there to be less waste and less swimsuits being thrown away each year.
So instead of following trends, we urge our customers to continue using their swimsuits and accessorizing them in new ways. This helps our customers pockets, but also reduces waste and has a big impact on our planet.
Our Business Model
FASHION ON DEMAND is one of the key recipes to achieving a more sustainable fashion industry. Today’s fashion industry is responsible for an alarming overproduction of clothes, leading to tons of textiles being dumped in landfills everyday worldwide. To revert this trend, we use this new business model that adjusts our production to the actual demands of our consumers.
By letting our customers custom design their own swimsuits, we hope they will be more likely to develop greater personal attachments to their garments, thereby holding on to them longer and giving greater care through more gentle washing practices etc.
Also, through a customized (participatory) design process, we reduce our need for large garment storage facilities as well as the risk for over production, which in the long run reduces waste of raw materials and carbon footprint.
Through prolonged garment lifetimes, more careful washing practices, and reduced levels of clothing overproduction, the fashion-on-demand strategy could become one of the key strategies for a more sustainable fashion industry.
We are proud to be part of the revolution! Join us and let’s reduce fashion waste together!
Our swimwear manufacturer is also one of our biggest collaborators in our sustainability efforts. They have established environmentally friendly operations within their manufacturing process to:
- Use energy more efficiently
- Reduce the release of pollutants in their operations
- Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
- Reduce the creation of waste materials
- Collect, reuse, recycle or compost waste materials
Our three main suppliers – fabric producer, fabric printer and manufacturer — are top of the line eco-friendly companies all located within miles from each other in Northern Italy. This allows us to keep our carbon footprint low and production times shorter while having peace of mind that we are supporting companies that care about the environment just as much as we do.
Fair & Ethical
We believe in fair trade and ethical production processes, which is why we make sure our production partners implement decent and fair working conditions and systems, that are compliant with national and international regulations.
Our products are handmade by artisans – Italian ladies of all ages – who work in a safe and fun environment. Our boutique atelier is a top of the line facility and is used by many of the high-end fashion brands.
Sustainable Production Techniques
We take into consideration a number of techniques, strategies, alternative processes and approaches that have a low environmental impact and positive social purpose.
Some of them are the ZERO WASTE PATTERN CUTTING technique, that eliminates textile waste at the design stage. It has been estimated that 15% of textiles intended for clothing ends up on the cutting room floor. Why waste a precious resource?
Another is using MINIMAL SEAM CONSTRUCTION, which reduces the number of seams required to sew together a garment. It makes manufacturing much quicker and can save on materials. It can also allow the garment to have greater freedom of movement and increase comfort for the wearer.
One of our favorites is obviously the MULTI-FUNCTIONAL / TRANSFORMATIONAL Strategy, which is designing products for multiple uses. At Lia Sahara, we are all about designing swimsuits that can be worn multiple ways, many also being reversible and having components that you can add or remove. All our accessories are attachable and detachable, reversible and so versatile that you can use them in a different way each time you wear them.
We are as vigilant about our packaging as we are about our products themselves. We research and source the most sustainable materials we can find, and we never use more than needed. That’s why you will notice our packages are as tiny as possible. We also limit the use wrapping paper, plastic tape and other common packaging products.
Less than 1% of clothing is recycled into new garments. The fashion industry generates 13 kilograms of waste for every person on the planet. To put that into perspective imagine a landfill the size of France filled with thrown away clothing and textiles. The fashion industry currently is not just wasteful it is also rapacious, taking ever increasing volumes of virgin raw materials that require land, water, oil, and chemicals and pollutes in production.
Keeping plastics from going to landfill and the ocean
Recycled polyester gives a second life to a material that’s not biodegradable and would otherwise end up in landfill or the ocean. According to the NGO Ocean Conservancy, 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean every year, on top of the estimated 150 million metric tons that currently circulate in marine environments. If we keep this pace, by 2050 there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish. Plastic has been found in 60 percent of all seabirds and 100 percent of all sea turtle species, because they mistake plastic for food.
As for landfill, the United States Environmental Protection Agency reported that the country’s landfills received 26 million tons of plastic in 2015 alone.
The EU estimates the same amount to be generated yearly by its members. Clothes are undoubtedly a big part of the problem: in the UK, a report by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) estimated that about 140 million pounds worth of clothes end up in landfills each year.
“Taking plastic waste and turning it into a useful material is very important for humans and our environment,” (Karla Magruder, Board Member of Textile Exchange)
We know this was a long read! Sorry! but we hope to have inspired you and that you are now as excited as we are to make the change!
We hope you will join us and together we will reverse the damage done to our planet, one swimsuit at a time!