The Great Undressed: Underwear designer proves it’s what lies beneath that counts

Underwear shouldn’t only be worn because it looks beautiful. It should be quality, comfortable, empowering, and functional. Thankfully, this Sydney-based underwear label ticks all these boxes.

Meet The Great Undressed, an Australian underwear brand committed to creating ethical garments that empower women and support sustainable practices.

Designer Sybilla Kenny says that in the chaos of daily life, we often overlook the impacts of an item of clothing we hold closest to us but ultimately disregard – our underwear.

“Of all of your garments in your wardrobe, your underwear is the one item that naturally gets thrashed about, repeatedly worn, washed, loved and then ultimately forgotten about,” Sybilla says.

“Underwear is something we all need – it does not become obsolete.

“I like the idea of creating an item of clothing that people have such a strong connection with.”

Sybilla’s brand was born out of her own personal experience with the unrealistic societal expectations of beauty and the inherent enforcement of them within the underwear industry.

“Like a lot of women, I have hips, and growing up I’ve always been aware of how ill-fitting underwear can be,” Sybilla says.

“I realised there was a gap in the market, especially in Australia. I was determined to create underwear that was well fitting, comfortable and actually beneficial to your body to be wearing.”

Her collection is produced and created locally in Sydney, using ethically sourced, certified organic cotton. It’s 100% organic, grown in India, and is approved by IFOAM and Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).

By creating a close relationship with her manufacturers, Sybilla ensures the sustainability of her craft, while following it each step of the way.

“Sourcing is so important. Our fabric supplier in Japan, they have worked with a specific group of cotton growers for over 15 years. These Japanese fabric manufacturers are obliged to follow extremely strict waste management and textile production laws.”

The Great Undressed

By producing her garments locally, the designer supports local, family owned businesses while minimising environmental impact.

“So many hands have touched each of our garments and this is such an important part of the process and story for us,” she says.

The wastage of excess fabrics is not something Sybilla takes lightly. She is heavily conscious of her environmental impact and has procedures in place to create as minimal waste as possible, all of which is recycled.

“We had played with the idea of making items with the scraps but in reality, we don’t want to be making anything that is superfluous. We also responsibly source all materials like labels, tags, and packaging.”

Her underwear line is created for anyone who wants to wear it, female identifying or not, and intentionally caters towards all body shapes. It is designed for people who like to make a statement about wearing what’s best for them with little impact on the environment.

“It’s about shifting back to breathability of underwear. We see this as its most important function, which seems to have been forgotten about,” she says.

“It is the return to what underwear should be: comfortable, sustainably made and beautifully designed.”

Sybilla says she set out to create a brand she was proud of – with an emphasis and focus on female empowerment and confidence.

“We want women to be confident in their unique bodies,” she says.

“When getting dressed, we want every customer to grab their undies and think to themselves, ‘I am Great Undressed’. This morning affirmation is a simple one – but it is important in facing the challenges posed by the unrealistic societal expectations of beauty.”

Sybilla takes care to ensure her customers feel confident in their underwear. To achieve this, she has created a range of 5 different underwear cuts to fit the unique shapes and sizes of women’s bodies, while making sure they feel comfortable in the style they choose to wear.

Find out more and shop The Great Undressed here.

About Author

Brittanie Dreghorn

Brittanie Dreghorn is the founder and editor of Britt's List, and an advocate for sustainable and Australian fashion.

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