aSS means a Swiss String and has been selling tiny string bikinis since 2002. The company was founded by Maria who created microstrings for her own use, but they were rapidly discovered by girlfriends, and their friends.. so she decided to set up a web shop. Maria was happy to answer SunandSin.com’s questions about her company, Swiss banker babes in micro bikinis & the bikini trends for the summer.
What are the trends for swimwear in 2008 as you see it?
- In the last couple of years, there have been many statements in newspapers and fashionmagazines about strings being totally out. Apart from that being nonsense (I would have noticed surely, when less girls bought strings!), 2008 will definitely mark the “official” come-back of the g-string on beaches and popping-out of womens’ jeans as well. The tanga will still be very popular too (the backside got to be very small!), but strings (even the micro ones) will become increasingly present.
What is the status of the micro bikini in Switzerland?
- Apart from the many American and Australian girls wearing aSS-strings (both bikinis and underwear), I have to say that Switzerland turned out to be a country with very liberated and openminded women.
- From the early start, i’ve received very much and positive feedbacks from girls all over this country. Even I, being Swiss myself, was surprised to learn, that the somewhat conservative image Switzerland seemed to have, didn’t apply to things to do with underwear, bikinis and shaving (which is a must for every girl who wishes to wear aSS).
Where should one travel to see your swimwear worn?
- Everywhere where there’s enough sun and freeminded people. Certain greek islands, ibiza, holland, caribian islands, north german coast, sweden…..
When watching the bikinis on the site I get the feeling of an intellectual and a bit artsy “feel free to do what you want” attitude of the brand. Is this the positioning you seek in the market?
- Actually, I’m not aiming for a specific position in the market at all. There are more interesting thing to spend time. But there are, on the other hand, “positions” I clearly wish to avoid: Silicon Valley, oily brown beachgirl-kitsch… there are way too many brands in that boring area already. Cuddly candlelight romance would be another example of what I really hate. One of the many advantages of running a small company by yourself is, that you don’t have to make compromises. So you’re right in assuming a “feel free”-attitude.
The model on your site with the tattoos, is that you?
If you are a bit overweight (BMI of 30 for example), is your swimwear range still possible to wear?
- Of course! it’s not about the weight, it’s about how you feel about yourself. An upright and self confident motion is more worth than the so say correct weight.
Did your company really get started by you creating bikinis for yourself?
- Yes, really! aSS started out of my own personal need for very tiny but comfortable-to-wear strings. There wasn’t a brand or shop around, that fitted to my specific wishes. So, i simply started to sew my own strings! Asked my mother to lend me her (25 years old) sewingmachine and tried out lots(!) of different ways and designs. When some of my friends saw those tiny prototype-strings, they instantly loved them and i suddenly had to sew lots more for them too. I figured, it might be worth trying to create a simple webshop, offering those strings to selfconfident girls worldwide.
Do any of the Swiss bankers in Bahnofstrasse, Zurich wear your bikinis?
- Unfortunately the girls in the Bahnhofstrasse are all dressed and don’t walk around in bikinis (although this would certainly attract many more tourists to zürich). But yes, I’m pretty sure, there are some Zürich banking-girls wearing aSS, since i have many customers in this city and many of the Zürcher (people here are called like that) do work in banking, there have to be aSS-wearing bankers!
Who is your typical customer?
- Of course, it’s impossible for me to know about most of my customers, how old they are, what kinds of jobs they have, or whether they’re in college or whatever.
Where do your customers come from? I can only assume there are lots of Germans?
- My customers come from all over the world. australia, united states, south america, japan and most countries in europe. germany is a relatively large country with a very openminded culture, so yes, there are indeed many girls overthere wearing my products.
Photos & Prices
Here are some photos of the more modest bikinis from aSS. They also sell more risque variants.
A typical set of aSS bikinis will set you back EUR 50-60 and can be ordered from their homepage.