Ahmed Al Kooheji launched Hanger 57 in 2017 as a brand focused on swimwear and with a strong edit of men’s beachwear trunks. Based in the island nation of Bahrain (where even the winters are mild), the former banker says that his knowledge of finance was essential in setting up the label, which was also his first entrepreneurial project.
Besides being for sale online through brand’s own website, Hanger 57 is available in hotel stores in its home country as well as having a presence in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates too. His swim trunks (which many women wear as swim shorts) make a real splash, thanks to a bold use of vibrant color and bold prints. For niche brands like his, Al Kooheji believes that it is important to build a community: “As a result, we have collaborated and will continue to collaborate with local talented designers, photographers, videographers, influencers, and local businesses.”
Inclusivity and sustainability
The label has pieces for men, women and children and is very size inclusive starting with a small and going up to 3X. Says Al Kooheji, “Our swimwear is for everybody. For example, a customer recently sent a photo of herself with 16 other family members on the beach wearing matching Hanger57 swimwear as they celebrated her grandfather’s birthday.”
He is also looking to be more sustainable in his processes. Initially Hanger 57’s adult swim shorts were made out of 100% peach skin polyester, but they now use a 90% recycled polyester that is more stretchable, and so, gives better fit.
Being open to customer feedback is something Al Kooheji says is very important for a young brand like his. He started introducing new lengths and cuts by listening to client feedback. For him, he has only just begun to dive into the world of fashion, and hopes to grow his beach happy brand with more categories and retail points across the Middle East. He also hopes to eventually go international.