Aurai Swimwear - Auckland, NZ & Novo Hamburgo, Brazil
AURAI is an ethical swimwear brand that has a deep respect for nature. AURAI work to raise the importance of better practice in fashion, supporting craftsmanship, fair trade and local sourcing of materials.
Founded by Italo-Brazilian designer Natalia Bertolo. Natalia, born in southern Brazil, graduated from University before moving to Milan, where she pursued a Master’s Degree in Fashion Management. Currently she lives and works in Auckland, New Zealand.
Inspired by her eco-design studies, developing a new generation of products and materials that have a more positive impact over the entire product cycle and the slow fashion movement, Natalia’s design philosophy includes a commitment to producing high quality swimwear. Among many design awards received, in 2011 Natalia won the Fashion Category of the International Talentos Design Competition which encourages the creation of sustainable projects to raise awareness about the potential synergies between sustainability, creativity and technology.
AURAI aim to reflect the essence of a fun, healthy and conscious lifestyle, featuring high quality materials, timeless silhouettes, colour palettes and exclusive prints. The AURAI collection is carefully handmade in Natalia’s hometown in southern Brazil, where she locally sources all materials.
FAIR TRADE & SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Since launching in 2015, AURAI has worked to raise the importance of better practices in fashion, supporting craftsmanship, fair trade businesses and local sourcing of materials.
AURAI guarantee environmental consciousness and ethical labor practices - no child or forced labor, no discrimination, and adequate work time and pay.
QUALITY & VERSATILITY
All garments are shaped to have a long life span, considering aesthetic aspects as well. All AURAI pieces are fully lined (with biodegradable fabric) or doubled, to ensure durability. A mix & match concept allows plenty of combinations among the collection pieces as well as with the pieces women already have in their wardrobes.
Almost all the AURAI pieces feature functional design, such as reversible options and customizable ties. Natalia believes that functionality discourages unnecessary purchases.
All AURAI suppliers are very close to their manufacturing facility, minimizing the cost and impact of transportation.
Until not long ago, to make swimwear brands relied almost exclusively on fabrics made with a mix of polyester and elastane, both synthetic fibers. To reduce environmental impact, AURAI always use high quality fabrics to make garments as durable as possible in order to prolong life span.
The first AURAI collection experimented with fish leather, a material discarded by the food industry that often ends up polluting rivers and lakes. Other materials include ECONYL®, 100% regenerated nylon made from recovered fish nets, old carpets and other industrial components, and AMNI SOUL ECO®, a bio-degradable fiber made in Brazil. Traditionally, a polyamide fiber takes decades to disintegrate. In tests, the AMNI SOUL ECO® yarn biodegraded by 50% in just over one year, with an estimation that after 28 months, it will biodegrade 100%.
AURAI are always searching for new technologies that can help develop more sustainable and creative products. Digital print is one of them, allowing them to create beautiful patterns that can be printed in small quantities without using water and harmful chemicals.
AURAI packaging consists only of a reusable drawstring mini bag made of 100% cotton towel fabric and a box made from 100% recycled paper.