To create dream bikinis that are high-quality, affordable and functional.
Tai grew up dreaming of the perfect bikini. A second-skin fit that morphs into your body, made from high quality materials at a fair price. She waited, & while trendy swimwear styles came & went, she found herself always waiting for them to go on sale, or struggled to find a suit to meet all her needs. Tai Swim Co is created for the cheeky island girl who needs her dream bikini now, not just after Black Friday. The perfect bikini does exist, & Tai finally found it when she designed her own line at 22.
Meet the owner, Tai
Tai is Native Hawaiian, Cherokee, Italian, Irish, French, Greek & lots more. A born & raised Hawai'i native, Tai grew up on the Big Island where she has been in cheeky swimwear ever since she can remember. She learned to surf, practiced hula, & spent all her free time playing outside all while wearing swimwear that had to keep up with her. Being from & fully immersed in a culture that revolved around the ocean, functional swimwear was necessary at all times. As a little girl, her fondest memories begin & end with bikinis.
Tai grew up & found something was missing.
As she got older, she realized that high-quality, affordable swimwear in Hawai'i was extremely hard to come by - sometimes costing up to $120 for just one top. This was not within Tai's weekly budget as a 14 year-old with a minimum wage job, so she saved every penny with the hope of starting her own brand one day that could fill the void in the Hawai'i designer swimwear market. She could always be found digging through drawers of her friends collections, constantly tracking down sample sales & trunk shows from her favorite local designers, & even sewing pieces of her own for her friends in high school.
From Big Island, to Kaua'i, then finally O'ahu.
Tai spent her childhood in Kealakekua on the Big Island, & later moved to Hanalei on Kaua'i. After a few island hops through her parents changing jobs, Tai attended & graduated from ‘Iolani School on O'ahu, where she was fortunate enough to learn from some of the best teachers, artists & designers in their field. Her design career brought her all the way to New York City, where she attended Parsons The New School for Design. There, Tai was able to combine her love of fashion, swimwear & art with her natural affinity for business & merchandising. After spending almost ten years in the fashion design field, Tai quit her job & launched Tai Swim Co.
Founded in cultural celebration & dedication to our planet.
In Tai's personal life, her love & care for the planet started in childhood on the Big Island of Hawai'i. Surrounded by flourishing Native Hawaiian culture & the untouched beauty of the islands, she learned very quickly that we are guests of the earth, & must care for her as she cares for us. Incorporating these values & cultural practices from her roots into her swimwear line started on day one. Tai has been 100% plant-based for years & grows most of her own food at home on O'ahu. She lives in a plastic-free home, & prefers biking over driving any day. A conservationist & forever a minimalist, Tai rarely shops for anything new -- preferring vintage & second hand styles over fast fashion. Everything in her home is vegan, non-toxic & cruelty-free. Tai's favorite hand-poured candles & zero-waste home accessories are all made locally by her friends. She does not wear makeup of any kind, & has been known to make her own hygienic products including deodorant, shampoo & toothpaste.
Sustainability in our roots.
Tai Swim Co works closely with our family-owned manufacturers who produce our swimwear & accessories in Canggu, Indonesia & Foshan, PRC. To ensure fair living wages, ethical high quality of life & sustainable production, we are in close communication almost every day. Our manufacturers are our friends, family, & the most essential part of our team.
Designing sustainably is not difficult, & Tai has taken the steps to keep her brand as eco-friendly as can be. However, having a swimwear brand is inherently, not sustainable. Creating something that doesn't need to be made goes against the very definition of environmental care. Tai understands this deeply, so whether it's creating suits in very small batches, sewing scrunchies from extra swim fabric, shipping with compostable mailers, using fabric dye made from plants, or producing designs made from recycled plastic bottles, a bikini from Tai Swim Co will always be the better option compared to what else is out there.
Tai Swim Co today.
Nowadays, Tai can be found navigating the world looking for new fabric swatches, finding design inspiration in nature & innovating the latest trendy bikini styles. But, she can just as likely be found at a farmer's market on a sunny island day or lounging on her favorite beaches with her husband & puppies on Oahu's windward side.