Being in Bali; in the middle of the ocean, surrounded by big beautiful surf and hot golden sun filled days, what better could we manufacture than Bikinis and Board Shorts.
We are always asked about what materials and fabrics are best to use, what stitching, printing, and of course comfortability, when manufacturing bikinis and board shorts. Your options in all areas are endless but let us help you narrowing things down.
Bikinis and Board Shorts
There are a wide variety of options when producing any clothing and garments but with bikinis and board shorts it comes down to nylons and microfibres.
Most bikinis are made out of nylon or nylon blended; usually with spandex or lycra, fabric. Nylon has great stretch ability and can be dyed and printed in any colour with any designs making it great for bikinis. This allows it to be versatile. When designing season to season it is always great to have solid colours in your range to keep things simples; it is your little black dress.
There are many different styles to design; halter top, triangle, bandeau, full bottom, cheeky, thong, and even more ways to mix and match them. Have fun designing all your favourites.
Something with you will want to keep in mind when designing and buying; is underwire good for you? Adding wire to your design will change the look and feel. Underwire is sometimes necessary but also works well for the bandeau styles. A little piece of wire at the sides goes a long way. However, you will truly always get a better feeling bikini is when no wire is added; feeling the soft fabric and not a stiff wire.
Straps or no straps or changeable straps? Once again, so many choices but really its what's on the inside that counts. Straps will either be made of the nylon fabric alone (same as the bikini) or you can add extra durability and life to your bikinis by adding a thin rubber strip throughout the centre of the strapping. This makes it stronger when faceting and tying. Using metal hardware instead of plastics will make a big difference too. Finally, using strong polyester threads in double stitch would add additional strength.
Designing and producing a higher quality bikini should be your main focus. It can sometimes even save your customers, from loosing it in the waves!
When it comes to board shorts for surfing, the 2 most popular styles are based on length.
You have your short board short which sits above the knee at a length of approximately 19" and your long board shorts at a length of approximately 22" which sit just below the knee. No matter which you choose; your designs, colours, and print options are endless in both styles. Get creative!
Whatever designs you can conceive of, it can be printed. Printing options for board shorts are digital and screen; the majority are digitally printed. This is because some of the intricate detailing that digital printing can do, screen can not. However, as screen printing fully penetrates the fabric; whereas digital does not; it is less likely to fade as quickly so has a longer wear life.
Board shorts, just as the boards, are an investments. Something you don't necessarily want to buy every season, or you find your favourite fit and nothing else compares; you want them to be durable and made for wear and tare. Using microfibres and microfibre blends with spandex will have give you a longer usage life. Think of this not only when you are manufacturing but when you shopping too.
Extending the durability of your board shorts starts at the seams. Around with waist line, hips and pockets, it would be suggested to use double stitch but along the inseam, groin and outseam, using triple stitch would be best. Use a strong polyester thread as well.
All board shorts will have a pocket on them. The placement of the pocket, the closure type or the venting holes might vary from style to style but overall, they have the same purpose.
The best closures is either velcro strips or a zipper. Velcro is the cheaper option of the 2 but if you do choose velcro, choose a high quality velcro that will lasts the life of the shorts. Zipper come in a wide range of qualities, so once again, choose one that will last the life of the garment. Waterproof zippers are available too if that is the preferred option. Grommets (metal) or eyelets (sewn) will be added into the pockets to allow water out faster. The same result can be accomplished but adding a small piece of mesh fabric; possibly imbedded in your brand logo. The last addition to most board short pockets is a key loop. This is a small "looped" piece of elastic thread which allows you to secure your keys (of other) inside your pocket without fear of loosing them. Sometimes there will be a double liner to secure them even more.
Finally, a lining, to have or not to have? It really all depends on the manufacturers and designers preferences. You may find that some board shorts will have it, while others may not. If there is a lining, it is usually made out of a polyester mesh. But what about using organic cotton mesh, it is softer, natural and feel more comfortable.
When designing and creating your bikinis and board shorts, keep in mind that the style will be very similar to what is currently on the market. The design isn't necessarily in what the cut and style is, it is in what you, the designer, decides to do to make them unique and your own brand!