Student startups: 437 Swimwear

In the Kingston winter, two commerce students start a swimwear business

Model Brooklyn Millet in a red 437 Swimwear suit.
Credit: 
supplied by 437 Swimwear

Next in our student start up series are two girls who followed their dream of starting a swimsuit business.

For Hyla Nayeri and Adrien Bettio, a semester on exchange and an inspiring trip to Italy’s sunny Amalfi Coast turned into a full-blown business.

When the two Queen’s students got home from exchange last summer, they started working on 437 Swimwear. It officially launched in July of 2016.

Their focus when the business started was the products, not the details of the business. 

“We didn’t put a lot of effort into the small details, the name of the business, the logo, the website, we just did it,” Nayeri told The Journal. “It took us one day or two. The hardest part of starting a business is to actually do it, why waste your time on small things?” 

The vision for their brand is minimalist, with an emphasis on neutral colors like blush, olive, lead, wine, red, black, pink and white. This was an intentional decision, part of their philosophy that the sexiest thing about their suits is the women wearing them. The colours emphasize their belief that everyone should feel comfortable in a swimsuit.

Nayeri’s personal favorite piece in the collection is “The Minimalist” in blush, but she notes that “The Minimalist” in red is the website’s hottest seller. “It’s definitely sexy, it’s a must-have, every girl needs a red bathing suit,” she said.

For the actual production process, Nayeri and Bettio create sketches, then get help from a middle-man who turns the sketches into actual designs, which are then sent to their supplier.

Nayeri and Bettio, both Comm ’17, plan to work for the business full-time following graduation. 

“We’re going to China in early June, we’re going to be meeting with our manufacturers and then going to Bali for a month to work from Bali. Our full-time career goals enable us to work from wherever we have wi-fi and laptops,” Nayeri continued. 

In terms of the future of the brand, they’re working on a new collection which will likely be released in the early summer of 2017. They have plans to look into expanding the business in the future, with intimates, beachwear, sleepwear and a potential collaboration for a line of men’s swimsuits.

While 437 Swimwear launched just nine months ago, Nayeri isn’t surprised that this is the path her life is taking. 

“It’s really unconventional, but I never thought I would do the conventional thing, I just knew I wanted something else,” Nayeri finished. 

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