For Raw X Salt, the ocean is something they deeply love and respect. They create bikinis that help to clean instead of polluting the ocean and our planet. Their bikinis are ethically manufactured in Bali using regenerated fabrics to close the loop. They avoid single-use plastic in their packaging, use eco-friendly dyes for their hand illustrated prints and carbon neutral shipping to send Raw X Salt threads to you.
They like living their lives slowly, so they introduce limited collections and pieces instead of seasons. They design all their pieces to be worn in multiple combinations so you can wear them longer. In every decision they make, they try to be as raw as they can. We sat down with the founders Emily and Olly to find out more about their brand.
How did Raw X Salt begin?
Living on the Australian East Coast, we are spoilt for choice when it comes to pristine, uncrowded beaches, rivers and waterfalls. It’s a part of our Australian culture to spend lots and lots of time at the beach. There is nothing better than salty skin, messy hair and sandy toes. We think that if you’re wearing shoes – you’re already overdressed. We are also absolutely in love with travelling and exploring this beautiful planet of ours. As we went travelling together to Asia, down at one of the beaches of Vietnam with lots of plastics littering the shore, our business idea was born. We wanted to create beautiful pieces to wear by the ocean while being conscious of the materials and the process - as a result, our bikinis are ethically made out of ocean retrieved plastics and other waste.
Emily was a model in the fashion industry for many years and travelled around the world and knows the fashion industry from an insider perspective. She is a full-time creator and mum of two these days with an incredible eye for colour and photography.
Olly flew around the world as a cabin crew for Emirates Airline and always had a passion for global fashion trends and local artistry. Along with Raw X Salt, Olly works in a creative industry supporting other brands in this digital world.
Have you always been interested in fashion?
Yes we always have, however, our passion lies in ‘why’ and ‘how’ of this multifaceted creative industry. We believe that fashion is a powerful force that unleashes beauty and empowers people on so many levels, however, it can be a destructive process to nature and people too. We’ve always been interested in bringing in the beauty and the healing together by asking questions in the process.
What have been the highest and lowest points on your journey so far?
Our campaign photoshoot is the highest. We were in the middle of sand dunes of the national park with beautiful models and talented photographers and it hit us. It was that moment when everything became real.
The lowest point was receiving our first print samples when colours got mistaken. We had this massive anticipation and we even recorded us opening the package just to get very underwhelmed. It’s pretty funny looking back at those sour faces on the video, but the struggle was real.
What are the morals you run your brand by?
We believe in the redemptive power of human actions towards this planet, the environment and the people who’ve been already harmed in the industry. The words in the brand name Raw X Salt are not accidental and were chosen with intention; in every decision we make, we want to be as raw and a real as we can. At the end of the day, we want to reinvent, regenerate, recycle, reuse and empower the people involved in the process. Every time we’re faced with a decision, we do a self-check to see if it aligns with us being as raw as we can. We always ask ourselves, “can we do better?”
What was the inspiration behind your latest collection?
Our planet, it’s vastness and it’s the beauty that can be so easily taken for granted. As ocean lovers, we’ve chosen the navy blue colour and added some texture to resemble ocean ripples or waves. We’ve also looked at the close up of the leaf pattern and then splashed a bit of wild sunshine into the mix with our own take on the animal print.
How would you describe your customer base?
Saltwater lover who cares about the planet and people. Idealists who believe they can change the world by what they chose to wear.
Do you ever struggle to stay inspired?
Yes, and if we do we go for a salty dip - always refreshes and puts things in perspective.
Is there anyone you would love to see wearing your designs?
Emma Watson for sure. She’s such a beautiful soul and a woman.
Do you have a mentor?
Absolutely, we never would have made it without her. She is an ah-mazing woman, a well of wisdom and an artist. Her name is Emily Kate Cooper and she runs a very successful creative studio called Novel Creative.
If you could only wear one piece from your collection, what would it be and why?
Em would wear the Columbian bottom as she was pregnant for the last 9 months and this style just worked wonders on her gorgeous watermelon of a belly. Olly is a lover of the Ready For Action top because she can always double it up as her Yoga crop.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Just have a crack (an Aussie way of saying, just ‘have a go’ or ‘give it a whirl’). Our mentor gave us this piece of advice when we called her before making our first significant payment for manufacturing. She said, ‘What’s the worst that can happen? You’ll have loads of awesome bikinis, you’ll have fun and you’ll learn something new.’
What drew you to Wolf & Badger?
The support for independent designers, thorough selection process and unique, beautiful pieces that are showcased.
Where do you see the brand in 5 years?
We’d like to be able to work full time for Raw X Salt and create, travel and encourage others in the process.