When tscudo joined Sustainable Marketplace we were super chuffed! Here was a newly launched Sydney based brand that uses recycled plastics to make sun protection tees for men, women and children which are suitable for both water and land-based activities.
Daily protection from damaging ultraviolet rays is important for all of us Aussies, so, with Summer almost upon us, we sat down with tscudo's founder Simon to chat about their sun protection tees and what makes them environmentally friendly. We also found out why making sun protection t-shirts is so important for Simon.
Tscudo came about after you had a stage 1 melanoma diagnosis. Would you mind sharing what happened and how that led to starting tscudo?
We will all be faced with challenges and incredible moments but it’s how we embrace the unexpected that truly defines us. This was one of my defining, pivotal moments. In 2016 my wife noticed a spot on my back. A spot I hadn’t noticed before because of its central position on my back. She suggested I get the spot looked at. So, I made a booking with a skin specialist the very next day. It had actually been 9 years since my last skin check.
The skin specialist had one look and decided to do a biopsy. One week later I was back at the skin specialist to find out the results. Stage 1 melanoma. Fortunately, this was cut out and no further signs of melanoma were found.
This event really gave me some clarity around who I was and where I needed to focus my energy. It also inspired me to use my knowledge around sun protection and produce something that would assist others. So tscudo was born.
Having spent many years working in the outdoor apparel industry I had always been interested in technical fabrics as well as the environment so there was a great synergy in producing a sun protective top made from recycled plastic bottles.
We love the symbol of the turtle. Can you tell us a little more about why you chose the turtle to symbolise your brand?
The turtle really is a special creature.
It’s a species that has stood the test of time, evolving with the elements and its environment. It doesn’t necessarily try to change the world around it but instead seems to patiently and effortlessly trust the process and its environment.
The turtle also carries its shell for the duration of its life. This shell offers absolute protection from the elements. Much like the tscudo top will do for each of us: providing a versatile shield against the elements.
That makes the turtle the perfect choice to represent tscudo.
Tscudo ticks quite a few sustainability boxes: the tees are made of recycled plastic, they can be used for both water and land adventures, they’re made to last, and they’re made in Australia.
Can you tell us a little more about why sustainability is so important to you? And how did that affect your decision making during the development process of your product?
Sustainability is avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance. Essentially meeting our own needs without compromising the environment and ability of future generations to meet their needs.
So it was important to me that every aspect of the tscudo supply chain had a focus on sustainable living.
Textiles and the apparel industry are one of the largest providers to landfill globally. As an industry there are many changes that need to be made throughout the supply chain. Therefore, I wanted to produce a multi-purpose product that was made from recycled materials and was designed with the environment in mind.
Making tscudo products in Australia is extremely important to me as I know it supports the local industry and community.
Can we ask you a few quick questions about running your own business:
What has been the hardest part of running your own sustainable business so far?
Like any business the hardest part is attention.
Did anything turn out easier than you thought it would be?
Five years ago building a sustainable brand was really unknown territory. These days many people and brands are understanding the importance of sustainability. What’s been great is the products now available to ensure all sustainable measures are made across the business – from packaging to manufacture.
What do you think has been your biggest achievement so far?
Simply starting. Action really equals motivation. By starting I’ve had the opportunity to meet amazing people, including Liz at Sustainable Marketplace who are all chasing the same purpose for a better future.
The tscudo label currently includes long sleeve tees for men, women and children. Does that complete your collection or are you developing other products? What does the future hold for tscudo?
The long sleeve tee will always be a part of the tscudo range. However, tscudo does plan to broaden its range with other amazing versatile sun protective styles.