When Natalie Croker and Amanda Bergin met at Illawarra Sports High School in Year 7 it started a friendship that saw them spend many weekends and holidays at Hyams Beach.
As teenagers they enjoyed those South Coast seaside adventures so much the memories stayed with them after they left school and entered the workforce.
Recently it inspired the two 24-years-old’s to become swimwear design entrepreneurs. In 10 days’ time they launch their first collection.
After leaving school Ms Croker went to FBI Fashion College in Sydney where she completed a business diploma. She then went to University of Wollongong where she graduated with a major in marketing and advertising and now works for Waples Marketing.
Ms Bergin works in administration for a mining company at Unanderra.
After school they remained close friends. One day when Ms Bergin was explaining the difficulty of finding a bikini top in her size the two decided to start their own business and swimwear fashion label.
They didn’t have to think hard to find a name for their business. Hyams Beach Swim launches on October 1, the Golden Days collection their first line of swimwear.
Fashion designers always work ahead. So as they launch their first collection for the summer of 2018-19 the two friends and business partners are working on their next collection.
Combine that with a fashion shoot at Hyams Beach for the Golden Days collection last weekend Ms Croker and Ms Bergin are very busy.
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But it does not feel that way as they mix business with leisure.
“The collection is inspired by the endless white sand and crystalline waters found at Hyams Beach, Jervis Bay,” Ms Croker said.
“It pays tribute to our youth, growing up on the South Coast spending every day at the beach, riding our favourite beach bike and surviving on hot chip sandwiches. Our “Golden Days”.”
“Growing up, Amanda, who is a cup size 12E, could never find a swimmer top that provided both support and style for a cost effective price. As such, our designs all have adjustable straps, tie backs and thick supportive material to ensure we are catering for women of all shapes and sizes.
“Our range will have nothing over $120. We are very excited with the launch less than two weeks away.”
Ms Croker said the first collection is all available online in sizes S to XL and will cater up to an F cup.
The aim is to stock an even more diverse size range for the following collection.
“Our goal is to make swimwear that makes women of all shapes and sizes look good and feel comfortable. We provide style and support with high quality fabrics.”
Ms Croker said everyone involved in shooting the campaign last weekend at Hyams Beach was from the South Coast.
And 75 per cent of the collection is made from eco-friendly fabrics.
The material used in the swimwear range is either an Italian fabric made from recycled fishing nets called VITA. Or a US fabric called Repreve which is a recycled high quality performance fabric.
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And after ordering their swimwear online customers will receive it in an eco-friendly calico drawstring bag.
“Our manufacturer is based in Indonesia,” Ms Croker said.
“They practice corporate social responsibility, paying above minimum wage and providing free health care for their employees.
“We are aware of the common issues seen across the fashion industry as such paid particular attention to ensuring we were not contributing to these issues.
The two entrepreneurial designers visited the manufacturer earlier this year before production started for Hyams Beach Swim.
Businesses that stock Hyams Beach Swim swimwear:
- Hyams Beach Swim www.hyamsbeachswim.com www.instagram.com/hyamsbeachswim
- Lisa Trujillo Activewear https://lisatrujilloactivewear.com/
- Thirroul Activewear https://thirroulactivewear.com.au
- Frolic Girls https://frolicgirls.com.au/
- Lejon + Co https://www.lejonandco.com/
- Yala Wax Wraps https://www.facebook.com/yalawaxwraps/
- The Occasional Box https://www.theoccasionalbox.com/
- Rococo Wollongong http://www.rococowollongong.com/
- The Native Nest https://www.thenativenest.com/
- Two Feathers Gift Boxes www.instagram.com/twofeathersgiftboxes