Designed for fashionistas like her who treat every outing as a fashion show, and every street as a catwalk, even when that street is made of, yes… sand.
Shea Marie is the quintessential LA woman. Legs for miles, a gorgeous mane of blonde locks (which she recently chopped to a chic long bob) and always in the coolest outfit. Her rise to fame as one of the most followed and loved influencers started with a fashion blog – Peace Love Shea – but today she is a trendsetter in her own right; a photographer and, more recently, a designer and true girl boss of her own brand, SAME. Handmade in Los Angeles and crafted from the highest quality Italian swim fabrics, her collection is pure California cool.
When we had the opportunity to interview the woman herself, we were eager to find out all the secrets about her life as a business woman, and what it took to launch a brand so uniquely hers.
You started your career as a stylist, fashion blogger and influencer. How did swimwear enter the picture?
I knew I was at the point in my career where I wanted to start my own line and I had so many ideas. I was touring leather factories in Italy thinking of designing handbags and had like 4 different projects going. One of my close friends owned a large swim factory in Los Angeles and I showed him some sketches of ideas I had and it just all came together so perfectly and beautifully I decided to focus on this project full time. It was a great time for swim — now it’s a bit oversaturated, but at the time the market was dying for something like SAME.
What is the most challenging part of creating your own collection?
In swimwear your options are so limited. You’re working with such small pieces of fabric, so coming up with new ideas that are different and haven’t been executed before (but still practical for use in water) is actually extremely difficult. I’ve never been someone who suffers from a loss of ideas, but sometimes we get stressed, like “what are we going to do next?”
On Instagram you once said that you prefer to be behind the scenes rather than in front of the camera. Was that something you discovered about yourself along the way?
I’m much more of a private person than people realize. I’ve always considered myself a creative and an entrepreneur over anything else and, at this point in my life, that is what I’m trying to focus on. “Seeing and being seen” isn’t important to me anymore. Being respected in a business sense is what is.
What do you think makes SAME stand out among other swim brands?
We are trendsetters. We don’t look at what other people are doing, and what’s “working” or what’s on trend and try to copy it. We look for what’s missing in the marketplace. We design for ourselves and women like us. I think, “what type of swimsuit do I want that I can’t find anywhere?” And then we make it. My style is constantly changing and evolving — so is the brand.
What is the difference between the SAME line and SKIN by SAME?
Skin by Same is the easy-to-wear, everyday, something for everyone, type of line. SAME is more “couture swim” in a sense. It’s more of a “look” and designer swim. That also makes it harder and more expensive to make, and in turn a bit more expensive. Skin by Same is made from the same fabrics and has the exact same quality but just the extra frills aren’t there. It’s the perfect fitting, stylish but also effortless swimwear.
I love the SAME SPORT line — it’s feminine but looks comfortable enough to move in. When did that launch and will the line continue to expand?
We launched Same Sport last summer. Expanding a brand into a new category is always hard and a tremendous amount work. I’m someone that wants to do everything from scratch and not use pre-made styles or stock prints/fabrics. It makes your brand so much more unique and special, but it’s also much more time-consuming and expensive. So, that being said, we are still working on the second collection!
What is the SAME mantra?
When I first started Same 5 years ago, I made up this silly slogan that was on all of our tags: “Let the ocean be your underwater runway.” I laugh at it now (maybe it was a little cheesy), but the idea is still there — that your swim style should be on par with your street style. It’s swimwear for the girl who loves fashion and loves to make a statement.
+Shop all SAME Swim on FP.com here.
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