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‘Make it happen’: Rockingham woman launches luxury swimwear brand

Kalani The Label founder and designer Kalani Vassallo. Photo: Skeer News.

A young Rockingham woman has started an ethically made luxury swimwear brand after bringing her dream to life thanks to COVID-19. 

With plenty of time on her hands during Perth’s biggest lockdown, Kalani Vassallo decided to venture into the world of bikinis and business.

Last week, the 20-year-old launched Kalani The Label, telling Skeer News that it’s been an overwhelming experience and something she’s wanted to do for some time. 

“I drew up over 100 bikini designs last August. I found a manufacturer and got them sampled [but] production took a while,” Kalani The Label business owner and designer Miss Vassallo said. 

“As a kid, I literally lived in bikinis and bathers, and I always loved the idea of starting my own brand. I just never really had the time or money to do it. 

“With Covid, you couldn’t go anywhere. I had all these savings. If I was going to spend it on anything, that’s what I was going to spend it on.”

The first-year commerce student said the launch was a massive success as sales and website engagement boomed. 

“You can see how many people [are] active on [the] website, how many people have an active cart, how many people are checking out, how many people have purchased,” she said. 

“Just watching those numbers gradually go up was such a surreal, insane moment, and it was like, yep, it’s worth it.” 

Pictured: Kalani Vassallo, Taneesha Kenward, Abby Teo. Photo: Supplied/ Kalani The Label.

Kalani The Label dropped their first swimwear pieces on October 10, and plan to gradually release exclusive batches of bathers, with a new line set to launch just in time for Summer. 

“I want to do small curated drops that are really exclusive, so at the moment, I’ve got a collection ready to go,” Miss Vassallo explained. 

“At the moment, it’s a really small drop, so we’ve got two sets and one one-piece all in one colour each.”

Miss Vassallo said she didn’t know much about the process before diving in but shared her advice of her own for aspiring businesspeople.  

“There was a lot of Googling, researching and YouTube videos. I have no experience in it at all,” she said. 

“All of it was a bit delayed because of Covid, but it took about ten months for the whole process to happen, which is a long time but worth it. 

“You just have to go for it. As cliche as it sounds, you have to be the person that believes in you because as soon as you don’t, that’s when it’s not going to happen. 

“As long as you believe in yourself, if you want it bad enough, you will put in the hard work and you can make it happen.” 

For swimwear exclusives and more information, visit Kalanithelabel.com or follow Kalani the label on Instagram via @kalanithelabel

Tex Reeks

Freelance video journalist
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