Newcastle made swimwear label creating pieces from recycled plastics
It’s that time of year again to pull out the swimmers that have been sitting in the back of your closet for months. Now if you’re like me and a regular beach goer those swimmers have probably faded and you’re a bit tired of the same cossies’ in every Instagram post. To help you out with some new swimwear for summer, Class of 84 has got your back in not only stylish, but sustainable swimmers.
Class of 84 has been bringing swimwear to Newcastle and a large online community to rock the beach or match with your mini me since 2018. The sustainable swimmers came to market purely by accident, with owner Hayley searching for and not succeeding to find; matching swimwear.
Finding a gap in the market Hayley poured her heart and soul into researching materials, manufacturing, and sizing in an effort to come up with her own line of swimwear. Not long after beginning her research, Hayley stumbled across the damaging effect’s the fashion industry has on the environment.
“I was learning about the crazy amounts of plastic bottles that were ending up in landfill and our oceans. The number is around 370 million and this is in Australia alone... I thought it made sense to find a way to use plastic bottles as our main material source.”
Based out of Newcastle, NSW the soft, lightweight, and quick-drying swimwear is manufactured by taking plastic bottles from landfill and recycling them to create swimwear. It takes approximately 50 plastic bottles to create 1 pair of men’s swim shorts.
“Basically, plastic bottles are taken from landfill and then ground down to make almost like a sand consistency, we then combine this plastic with organic cotton to create a yarn which we then use to make our swimwear.” She says
Now you might not think plastic bottles are not very stylish, but the range of swimwear features different themes with best seller meat pie boardies always a sell-out. The company has also launched their new sausage sizzle print, as well as their new line of Christmas, themed swimwear.
Since the launch of her brand, the company has grown so much Hayley has started to branch out internationally, launching the brand in New Zealand. Hiring a fashion expert who previously worked for Diane Von Furstenberg in New York helped drive the business forward.
By the year 2050, based on our current consumption there will be more plastic in our oceans than fish. This is incredibly alarming and concerning. Class of 84 clothing’s goal for 2020 is to remove 100,000 plastic bottles from landfill however Hayley says simply recycling plastic is not enough.
The company is working towards becoming a carbon-neutral company, working to cancel their carbon emissions through reusable packaging that can be thrown into the compost when you’re done. Class of 84’s aim is to be out of business as soon as possible.
“We hope by 2030 there is no more plastic for us to recycle to create our swimwear, for us, there must be a purpose in what we are doing, and we must be having a positive impact.”
Looking into next year the swimwear line is planning to release activewear made from Pineapple and other fruit skins. Through the sale of their swimwear, you can also support worthwhile causes including Waves of Wellness Foundation and Port Stephens Koala hospital.
For Novocastrians, you can also head into the Soul Kollective in Merewether who carry their range.