For the Water bathing suit
Photo: Ryan Segedi

It was daunting for Keisha Ferguson to add her designs to the (ahem) sea of independent bathing suit companies that have popped up in the past few years. “I didn’t want to create just another swimwear brand,” she says. “I really wanted to be rooted in something bigger than myself.” Enter For the Water, which released its first collection in October — just in time for Chicago’s warm-weather-vacation season, which some people refer to as “winter.” The locally based line of one- and two-pieces (plus a couple of cover-ups) is inspired by succulents, which you can see in the curved lines and pops of teal, and it’s aimed at consumers worn out by the wastefulness of fast fashion. Each piece, such as the Kasscity (pictured, $324), is made of nylon produced from plastic pulled from the oceans. Ferguson will donate a portion of the proceeds to nonprofit partners working on clean water initiatives: The first up is United Way of Genesee County, whose Flint Water Fund pledges to provide lead-free water to everyone in Flint, Michigan. Sounds like smooth sailing for your conscience. From $124.