As of the 12th April 2019, we are adjusting the price of our swimsuits to £50 + kids are changing to £25 (we know, we know, we're cringing too).
Why? Why would we even do this?
Our price has remained the same since we released our first ever collection of recycled swimsuits in 2017. This was pre-Blue Planet, when it wasn't uncommon for us to receive comments about how "disgusting" it was to wear plastic waste. How quickly perceptions can change (thanks David!). It's now 2019 and recycled fabric is still more expensive than regular fabric. Shipping prices, fuel and all other costs associated with running a small business have also gone up during this time (so dull, but reality).
In the past 12 months our small business has grown to a slightly busier small business and we've found ourselves at a cross-roads. Do we scale up and start ordering much bigger volumes to meet both current demand and sustain the price point? This would mean big changes to how we run Batoko including outsourcing fulfilment (we currently post all orders from our studio ourselves). Or do we stick to our core values: sustainability, slow, small, limited. For us, the latter makes more sense as it aligns with who we are and means Batoko stays Batoko-y. We can focus our attention on creating a really great product, designing unique prints and providing the best customer service we can - all under one (small) roof.
But, are we even worth it?
Ahh that good old self-deprecating question we've been asking ourselves. Are we good enough? Value really comes down to you (sorry!) and how much you are willing to pay for what we make. If you are an existing customer of ours then maybe you can come to a quicker decision on that. If you are new round here and trying to figure out what makes our swimwear different to a major store selling swimwear for £20, below are some benefits that come with shopping small and sustainably:
Our swimsuits are made in limited batches, which is not only a win for the environment and the people that make them, it also means that you and only a tiny percentage of others will ever own one (yes for individualism!). They are 100% recycled from plastic waste and a proportion of profits made every year goes to organisations fighting plastic pollution (giving back is so incredibly important to us because our recycled swimwear was born out of beach cleaning). Each swimsuit is pre-cut then digital printed which, although more costly and time-consuming, saves a lot of water and waste. We make our swimsuits to a high standard so if you take good care of them they will last many years rather than a season.
Lots of our customers (especially new) like the option to be able order a few different sizes or prints to try and return any that are unsuitable. We understand that our new price increase has just made that a bit more expensive, so to counteract this we are in the process of arranging some (hopefully free) shipping bundles, which will be in place by the 12th April.
A note to our loyal customers
We can't thank you enough for your support up until this point. In a world-wide-web of endless choice, it means a ridiculous amount to us that you choose our swimwear and we do hope you'll stick around on this journey with us.