• Featured Brands: Under The Same Sun

    This summer, we’re all about activewear brand Under The Same Sun. Born out of designers Emelie Lindgren and Anna Engellau's need for a fun (and fashion-forward) sustainable line of yoga and beach wear, Under The Same Sun boasts full collections of clothing that is made with 100% low impact textiles. Designed in Sweden, but made in California, the brand fuses European design with the laid-back vibes of the beachy LA lifestyle, and the result is comfy, eco-friendly activewear: perfect for doing yoga, surfing the waves, or even just surfing the ‘net.
    Photos by Marta Vargas

    Can you introduce yourselves to us and tell us where you’re from?
    Emelie grew up in the north in the country side surrounded by the natural beauty that Sweden is so famous for. In her twenties she decided to move to Stockholm to deepen her knowledge for her passion of communication and photography. In contrast to Emelie’s childhood Anna has always been a big city girl growing up in Stockholm, London, and Los Angeles, but now resides in the country side of Djurgården with her daughter and dogs. [We're] two polar opposites meeting in unison to share a dream and a “love child”!

    Can you tell us a little bit about how Under The Same Sun began?
    We met at a yoga studio, started talking, and it turned out that we had the same idea based on what we felt was missing in the market today. The day after, we started Under The Same Sun. The decision to start up the company was a given. We strongly felt that it was the right thing for us to do.

    What were your backgrounds in design before this started?
    Neither one of us had a background in design before we started Under The Same Sun. Emelie was working at a PR agency doing marketing and Anna was working as a commercial producer at a production company. People probably thought we were crazy jumping into the deep end of the pool, but we honestly feel that our lack of experience has given us a unique perspective on the process. And we're not afraid to work hard which is probably the most important thing when you have to learn everything from the beginning!

    What makes sustainability so important to you as a brand?
    To do what we can to make any small difference on the environment or to affect how people view this industry was always equally important to us as the clothes themselves. Starting Under the Same Sun with the mission of only working with sustainable materials has been so much harder than if we had decided to use non eco materials, but there was never any other way of doing it for us. There is always more we can do and we learn about new techniques constantly on how we can become a more sustainable company.

    And you guys even work with a fabric that is made from recycled bottles – can you tell us a little more about that?
    Our custom made fabric is made of Repreve Recycled Polyester. Recycled polyester is made from recycled water bottles and uses 53% less energy and water, and produces 54.6% fewer greenhouse gas emissions than regular polyester. Recycling polyester fabrics decrease environmental impact and less crude oil is taken from earth’s resources – which are already very limited. It also cuts down on energy use, chemical use, waste material and toxic emissions, and makes less soil, water and air pollution. Each pair of our leggings recycles approximately 25 plastic bottles.

    What is your design process like?
    For us it's always important for our collections to have a story or a theme. There is usually a quote, a place or a feeling that starts the process of putting together a mood board for the collection. Each print is designed based off of mood boards we created for the collection which we collaborate with a print designer to develop. We are pretty specific, but luckily no one has quit on us yet!

    Where do you draw inspiration from for your colors and patterns?
    The knowledge that we all come from the same source and that we are all connected is a huge form of inspiration for us. Looking back at all our previous collections nature has played a huge role, but you'll always find an urban element whether it’s in the choice of color, techniques used to create the print, or a hidden symbol to enhance the message we are conveying, they've mainly been inspired by nature.

    The company is based in Sweden and products are made in CA – any particular reason for that?
    We contacted over 200 different fabric suppliers until we found one that would develop the fabric we wanted to use. Being a small start-up, no one really wanted to take us on to do our production. We were lucky to have our fabric supplier call in a favor and help us get a cut and sew contractor. It felt like the perfect place for us to have our production both with the great love for yoga/beachwear culture that is the essence of California, but also with how the different suppliers were located more or less next door to each other. Minimizing pollution during transportation and giving us the possibility to be part of the production from start to finish [was very important to us].

    You mention the yoga/beachwear culture in California, but what is yoga/beachwear style like currently in Sweden?
    Swedes have been pretty conservative, but we have noticed a change in the black and grey trend. People are not afraid to stand out and show their personality in the studio and on the beach. That’s what we wanted to be a part of. Helping people show their unique selves.

    Your studio setup looks so great! Can you tell us a little bit about what you love about it?
    Our studio was first based out of necessity since we were low on funds and Anna had a free space in her house for us to work in and store our stock. Two years later we are still there, now not due to necessity but because the space and its location captures the essence of what Under the Same Sun is all about. Love and connection to nature, only minutes from the city. We get the best of both worlds. The light in our work space makes all the colors we work with so vibrant, and it doesn’t hurt to be able to have lunch under a beautiful magnolia tree.

    So if we were to visit Stockholm, what would you recommend we visit? Where should we start?
    Stockholm is the most beautiful city, especially in the summer. You have the intense city life, the urban areas like Södermalm, the historic Gamla Stan, the archipelago with over 30,000 islands, and of course Djurgården, which is best experienced renting a bike and cruising around the island.

    Best outdoor club: Trädgården
    Best bakery: Tösse
    Best raw food: Systrarna Voltaire
    Best weekend tip: Rent a car and drive to “Rosenhills trädgård” (second hand market) for some “loppis," great food, and while you’re at it, pay a visit to the Blue Lagunes.
    Best store: If you want to find a good mix of Swedish fashion and interior, check out Grandpa.
    Yoga studio: Yogayama, Inbalance, and Urban OM, just to name a few.

    You can also find pop up yoga and donation based yoga lessons. Send us an email and we’ll send our best tips! To find some secret, not to touristic tips, check out the book Uncommon: Stockholm.

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