September 13, 2016
Merchandise Product Development Graduate Chelsie Kadota is the founder of S.I.E. Swim, a new swimwear collection that was recently showcased to the world at July's Miami Swim Week. We chatted with Chelsie to learn more.
What led you to start S.I.E. Swim? Born and raised in Hawaii, and basically living at the beach, I've always had a natural love and affinity for swimwear. I always owned a ton of bikinis, along with seeing many girls on the beach, and always felt inspired to wear my own.
What were you doing prior to running your own line? A lot. I worked retail, financial jobs, and corporate at BCBG where I interned first before I got the job as a Merchandiser. Being there taught me everything about having my own business as well as gave me the opportunity to see things from concept to store.
What separates your line from other swimwear brands? S.I.E SWIM is a swim lifestyle brand that is meant for the "Sand to Street." It is inspired by fashion forward ready-to-wear trends that are seen from the colors to the fabrics to the unique designs. It is different from our competitors because it is not necessarily one-dimensional.
We hear you are based in Hawaii, but produce in LA? I am very proud to say that I have chosen to support the integrity of my brand by manufacturing in the USA. Being in LA gives me the opportunity to be very hands on and work very closely with all of my contractors.
What are your ultimate goals for S.I.E.? I plan to take this brand international, which will be represented around the world very soon. I want to keep growing my brand and eventually branch out to different categories.
How did FIDM help prepare you for running your own business? FIDM helped give me a foundation for the key concepts to working in the fashion industry and running my own business. It helped me to meet great contacts and be exposed to a variety of businesses necessary in to running your own business.
Categories: Alumni News, Careers, Merchandise Product Development