The Teeny-Weeny Polka-Dot Bikini With A Conscience

Who says you have to exploit underpaid foreign workers toiling away in potential deathtraps in places more interested in turning a buck than protecting its people to get the latest in summer fashion? At a Silicon Valley-based swimwear maker, the itsy-bitsy-teeny-weeny polka-dot bikini doesn't have to be the victim of U.S. garment industry outsourcing.

Founded in 1984, Ujena Swimwear, located down the street from high-tech giant Google, has managed to churn out bikinis and one pieces for women in an era when many of its competitors have taken the easy route out -- sent production overseas.

In 2010, the company even added a showroom to display its Made in America wares more prominently. Given its location in Silicon Valley, it targets a very different audience than your typical Target -- high-tech women with little time on their hands but the disposable income to afford a swimsuit that doesn't fall apart after summer's over.

Years ago, Ujena attempted to manufacture in China with very disappointing results. Said company president and co-designer Lisa Anderson to the news site for Milipitas, California: "There was a time, one run, that we tried manufacturing in China, but the quality was lower ...It was a lot less expensive, but not worth it."

What's the company's secret? Invest in its workers, encouraging them to stay around to get to know the product well. The meticulous commitment to detail and high quality has helped the company develop a group of very loyal followers.

"We makes suits that are high quality and using great fabric that's timeless," Anderson told Milipitas Patch.

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