Still in the market for your summer swimsuit? We may have found what you’re looking for. Jude Al-Khalil, the former COO of Reformation, is launching BIKYNI today, an approachable mix-and-match swimsuit line featuring classic tops and bottoms for $50 each. Care to hear more?
theFashionSpot: What made you want to design swimwear?
Jude Al-Khalil: Women dread shopping for swimwear more than any other item of clothing. My vision for BIKYNI was driven by my desire to take the frustration and anxiety out of buying a suit. With BIKYNI, I’m hoping to modernize this experience by creating one that makes women feel comfortable and confident. We offer our own line of quality swim essentials that are presented in a straightforward, uncluttered way. We’ve designed our online shopping experience to make this process enjoyable: an intuitive fit guide, easy mix and match and free shipping and returns.
tFS: What’s your design background?
JAK: I actually don’t have a formal design background. BIKYNI was inspired by the swimwear that I love, but can’t always easily find. I have an amazing team that’s helped me bring it to life.
tFS: How is BIKYNI different than what’s already on the market?
JAK: We’re offering swim basics, which are not as easy to find in the market as one might think. We focus on premium materials and great fit, but keep our price under $100 for a suit. Our fabrics are sourced in Italy and we make all our suits in Los Angeles. And we pair this with a smart digital shopping experience that makes it easy and comfortable for women to shop for a swimsuit.
tFS: Who’s the BIKYNI customer?
JAK: Everyone needs simple and versatile swimwear to complement the trendier suits in their wardrobe. BIKYNI is where girls can find those essentials. Women can get quality and fit that is hard to find in the market at our price point.
tFS: Tell us about your first collection.
JAK: BIKYNI is the classic swimsuit at its best. Our first line was inspired by a desire for minimalist swimwear that’s essential to every girl’s collection, yet impossible to find in today’s over-designed swimwear market. We’ve made what we believe are the best versions of each of the classics with an updated and modern feel. We have 10 styles (5 tops, 4 bottoms and a beautiful one-piece) and all our colorways are solid except for a black and white gingham print.
tFS: How important is it for you to produce the garments in the U.S.?
JAK: It’s really important. Our factory is a 10-minute drive from our office in downtown L.A. We spend a lot of time there and are present for every step of the process. By keeping our manufacturing here, we can be completely hands-on and maintain the quality we want to give our customers. We also love being able to keep the jobs domestic and contribute to an industry that continually sees its labor moved overseas.
tFS: What did you learn at Reformation that you’ll apply to BIKYNI?
JAK: Reformation is a brand with a powerful story behind it and it does a great job telling this story, especially digitally. Customers want to connect with brands and this strong storytelling is something I’ll apply to BIKYNI as I build the brand.
tFS: Where do you think the swimwear market is headed?
JAK: Women will always use the pool or beach as a place to wear more color and trend than they do in their everyday wardrobe. But we’ve seen more basic silhouettes that move away from the frills and fringes that were big the past few years. Women are searching for simplicity and versatility in their swim pieces.
To shop the new line, head on over to BIKYNI.com.