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Kalim Print - The Story

Posted on 25 March 2017

Bikini Empire made in canada print one piece bikini
If you've been a fan of Bikini Empire's ethically made swimwear for a while, then I'm sure you know that we have at thing for classic, solid colours. That is, until this year. We decided early on that we would only foray into prints when we were able to come up with something that was a direct reflection of our brand and is also ethically made. We didn't want to be ordering some mass produced b.s. off the internet that other brands had access to. We knew that we wanted to collaborate with an incredible Canadian artist, and thankfully, we had lots to choose from. So how did the Kalim print come to be? Well it all started 12 years ago on Bondi Beach, Australia.
robyn waffle of totem design co and monica rush of bikini empire
The Kalim print is the result of a collaboration and friendship between Robyn Waffle of Totem Design Co. and Monica and I at Bikini Empire Swim Inc. The three of us met one another over 12 years ago in Bondi Beach Australia. Robyn was attending university in Melbourne studying fashion design, and Monica and I had a one year work visa. The three of us met under serendipitous circumstances and became quick friends. A few nights on the town, chillin' evenings at our apartment eating grilled cheese sandwhiches (we were teenagers, we didn't know how to cook!) and one epic road trip to Byron Bay solidified our friendship. Over the years the three of us stayed in touch despite living on opposite sides of Canada. We watched Robyn's artistic career take off, first painting and fine art, then transitioning into textiles.
bikini empire made in canada swimwear
After hosting Robyn and her fiance, Yvan (also her partner in Totem Design Co.) at our off the grid earth house on Gabriola Island two summers ago, and spending a week together drawing, swimming and playing cards.... we knew we had to collaborate on something. Bikini Empire was still in it's fledgling state. A made in Canada bikini line, we knew we had to collaborate with this amazing Canadian artist. So the three of us stayed in touch and bounced ideas back and forth for the next year. We needed our first print to be nothing short of spectacular, and we knew Robyn's experience in the Canadian art and design scene, and the world of high end textile design would be the perfect match for us.

Bikini Empire made in canada bikinis and Robyn waffle canadian textile artist print collaboration
When Robyn presented the Kalim print to us, we knew immediately that it was a winner. Retro, geometric and original, it was everything that we hoped it would be. The print was then turned into a fabulous flat weave rug made with 100% New Zealand Wool. The Empire Rug is a one of a kind rug, available for purchase or you custom order. Bikini Empire then chose eco-friendly dyes and a local Vancouver based textile printing company to turn Robyn's artwork into a line of ethically made swimwear that is completely made in Canada. Jewel tones and pastels really made the print pop, so we designed a collection of sexy retro styles that showcase Robyn's stunning print to the absolute fullest.

The Kalim print is an exceptionally flattering wearable art piece. We love the Deep V One Piece in this print, and the Classic Cut Bikini Bottoms paired with the T-back Traingle Top. Shop these looks before this limited edition print is gone!

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