THEY’RE CUTE, THEY’RE ECO-FRIENDLY, THEY OWN A SWIMWEAR LINE... IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR SOME INSPIRATION FOR WIFE MATERIAL I THINK YOU JUST SLAPPED IT ON YOUR ASS WITH A BIKINI. NUKU IS CO- FOUNDED BY MORGAN MURRAY, A LONG TIME ORANGE COUNTY LOCAL WHO DOES HER TATTOOS AS WELL AS SHE RUNS A BUSINESS, AND ELISE BRIGANDI, ANOTHER ORANGE COUNTY LOCAL WHO LOOKS LIKE HER DEGREE WAS GIVEN TO HER ON THE BEACH. WHEN TALKING ABOUT BUSINESSES WITH A RAD MESSAGE THAT IS BACKED TO THE FULLEST EXTENT, THESE TWO TAKE IT ABOVE AND BEYOND.
Their loyalty to sustainability speaks volumes throughout their entire production process. They create their bathing suits with recycled Nylon picked up from beaches and landfills, you can’t find any single use plastics in their packaging, their tape is compostable, and their boxes are recycled... I mean you can eat their goddamn tape. It’d definitely taste like shit but you can’t beat that.
I’ve found that besides Tavarua having endless world class waves, it’s a great place to help birth an idea for a business. Morgan and Elise met while on a trip there. While chatting, they noticed they couldn’t think of a bikini that had it all; affordability, sustainability, made locally, stylish... a vague idea was then formed that would later become known as Nuku. They split ways after the trip and toyed with the idea in conversation here and there. Elise was texting in class at OCC when a message dropped down from Morgan that basically said, “Should we do this?” From then on, the wheels didn’t come off. Nuku morphed from a light conversation on top of sand pebbles in Tavarua into what now fills a quaint little office space on 30th street in Newport Beach. That little office pumps out bikinis manufactured with timeless elements and colors that will stay fresh longer than next month's trends.
The women-ran business and everything from start to finish is a truly conscious and inspiring story. They embody what we need more of in this world and we were thrilled to be able to chop it up with Nuku.
You guys see creativity where others see uselessness. How gratifying is it to know what goes into the process and then seeing others gravitate towards what you guys offer?
It gives me chills to see what it came from to everything we have now, I mean it's insane. The whole sustainability piece of it is something we hold close to our heart, not only is it our fabric, but we don’t use any single use plastic in any of our production. It’s super gratifying and we’re just so happy to be able to give back to the thing that gave us so much as well as Nuku, the ocean.
So incredibly impressive! What do you think drives your guys' creativity?
Honestly each other! I think we build off of each other and as cheesy as it is, our new office as well. Having an environment that invites creativity is something we definitely build off of as well.
We love that. Another thing, I was looking on your website and didn’t see any men's sizes. Just spitballing here, but what if we did a Nuku x Lame Banana hammock collab? I’ve got a couple models in mind.
Haha yes!! For sure. Whether it’s a banana hammock or trunks, a men’s line is something we’re definitely hoping to gear up for.
You guys heard it here first. Catch us in some Banana hammocks real soon!
Alright, let's get as corny as possible for this next one. What kind of ripple do you wanna make in the bikini world pool?
I think most importantly is to be eco-friendly. A lot of brands, the harm that it's doing to the environment is unbelievable and I don't think people are talking enough about it. I think we have a unique platform to educate people on the subject!
What's it like being a women-owned business in 2021?
*They both light up in unison* Amazing! It’s super cool to have people recognize that as well. Obviously now with a woman vice-president there’s just cool shit happening for women and we’re glad to do our part!
So rad. We want nothing but the best for you both! Keep killing it, we can't wait to see what's in store! :)