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Behind the brands: Focus on Sauvage

Taking the plunge on a wild swimwear line

If you think the swimwear line Sauvage is just for supermodels such as Irina Shayk, think again.

While the brand has gained prominence through magazine features such as Shayk’s past Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover, Simon Southwood – who launched the line with his wife Elizabeth in 1985 – said it appeals to a variety of women and men.

Sauvage South Beach Miami
Elizabeth Southwood at Sauvage, South Beach Miami

“Our line is for everyone – regardless of your age or body type – because fashion is all about attitude,” Simon said. “Our design process is very intense because we try to capture the latest trends while also ensuring detail and quality are paramount.”

Simon said they landed on the name of the company because the word Sauvage is French for wild.

“We wanted to build a brand that was different and interesting,” Simon explained. “Elizabeth has always had a passion for high fashion and while we initially reacted to what people said they wanted, we gradually developed our own style.”

He cites items from the company’s latest line such as the Portofino collection, which features vivid sea life prints inspired by the resort. Meanwhile, the men’s line – which we recently added to our offerings – feature Italian plaids which have a unique microfiber plaid that’s from an Italian mill in Como.

Quality is important

While fashion is important to Elizabeth and Simon, so is quality.

“At one point, we contracted out our manufacturing but the quality just wasn’t the same,” Simon said. “Today, everything is made in our factory in San Diego. We have some great seamstresses and we are real control freaks when it comes to the manufacturing process. We think we have a product that is above and beyond the competition – both in quality and design.”

Due to demand, the company recently opened a new store on South Beach in Miami and Simon said Canadians are also fond of the brand.

“We actually have a very loyal following in Canada,” Simon said. “We love to work with family companies such as Sun Vixen.”

Sauvage factory
Simon Southwood, CEO Sauvage & Opal Hurteau, Founder Sun Vixen Swimwear at Sauvage Factory San Diego

So, whether your tastes run conservative or a bit edgy, now is as good time as any to unleash your inner Sauvage.


Did you enjoy this Behind the Brands feature? Check out our profiles of Agua Bendita and Maylana too.

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