A Sustainable Life with Kelsey Robinson Cook of By The Sun
Co-founder of Ethical Clothing Line, By The Sun and 2x Olympic Medalist Kelsey Robinson Cook, chats to us about her daily life, sustainable habits and inspirations behind By The Sun. Travelling as a professional athlete, Kelsey has had the opportunity to see first hand the negative effects of consumerism which motivated her to think deeply about her personal impact and the impact of By The Sun on the planet.
By The Sun was co-founded By Sarah Nimptsch and Kelsey Robinson Cook, see Sarah’s recent editorial on By The Sun & sustainable materials!
“As someone who has a passion for fashion but has often struggled to find clothing that fits properly, I wanted to create a brand that is inclusive of all women and makes them feel luxurious and beautiful in classic, timeless pieces.”
– Kelsey Robinson Cook
What inspired you to start By The Sun?
As a professional athlete with over a decade of experience and a lifelong involvement in sports, I have had the privilege of being surrounded by women of diverse shapes and sizes. I have always been struck by the unique beauty and power of the female form and have observed that the fashion industry often fails to cater to a majority of women who do not fit a specific mold. This realization, along with inspiration from my teammates, led me to launch By The Sun. As someone who has a passion for fashion but has often struggled to find clothing that fits properly, I wanted to create a brand that is inclusive of all women and makes them feel luxurious and beautiful in classic, timeless pieces.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
If im being honest, check my phone for a bit. Usually, I have morning training or practice right away so I will grab my practice clothes, have an iced coffee and grab a breakfast of coconut yogurt and granola and be on my way. Some last minute kisses to my husband and kitty. Oh and lots of water!!
What’s your daily beauty routine?
I have been a longtime and firm believer in the magic of Marie Veronique products. I use their line for my morning and nightime routine. On days where my training is light, I will also use my NuFace, LED mask, or a guasha routine for a little self care. Also, hopped on the TikTok trend of rosemary oil hair spray every day!
“I desired to create a brand that offers elevated loungewear that allows me to look put together with minimal effort. Whether it be pairing our Palma pants with a simple top, adding a touch of tinted sunscreen, and finishing off with timeless jewelry, I am able to achieve a sense of beauty and style.”
– Kelsey Robinson Cook
How would you describe your day to day style?
Given my demanding schedule of training for 5-6 hours daily, managing By The Sun, hopping in the water for a surf when im in California, and extensive travel, I often find myself short on time. This was a significant factor in my inspiration for By The Sun, as I desired to create a brand that offers elevated loungewear that allows me to look put together with minimal effort. Whether it be pairing our Palma pants with a simple top, adding a touch of tinted sunscreen, and finishing off with timeless jewelry, I am able to achieve a sense of beauty and style.
What are your favourite materials to wear daily?
I love love love our Palma pants. These are our signature pants that come in two inseams to include all of my taller women 😉 They are perfect to dress up or dress down and can slip on right after a long day of training. I love linen, hemp or organic cotton. Easy fabrics that always feel just as good as they look. My personal day to day style given my hectic schedule has to be effortless.
When I have an off day or am going out for the night, I love a statement piece to pair with my capsule wardrobe. Whether that is something I’ve thrifted or borrowed from my grandma’s closet, I am inspired by styling these pieces that are so unique!
How do you inform yourself throughout the day? What are you listening to, watching, reading?
About 8 months of the year for me are spent traveling in Europe or Asia so it’s important to find ways to catch up with news. I love Podcasts including Keep It! And Pod Save The World/America. For all my romance girlies, I love Throne of Glass or The Ballad Of Never After currently. 😉
Do you have any personal life hacks for getting through the day in the most sustainable way possible?
Being part of a professional team can come with its own set of sustainability challenges. From the constant travel, to the wasted food, to the abundance of plastic water bottles, to the piles of training clothes handed out, it can feel overwhelming to try to make a difference as an individual. That’s why I make a conscious effort to do my part. I always bring my reusable water bottle to avoid using plastic, limit the number of training clothes I receive and pass them on to fans at the end of the season for reuse, and strive to reduce waste as much as possible. Sustainability in sport is often not talked about so even just setting an example and talking about how we can be better is a start.
When I go shopping, I always make sure to consider the long-term sustainability of the pieces I am buying. I think about whether the items will fit in my closet and last for a long time, if I can find them second-hand or from a thrift store, and if I have to buy something new, I research the brand and product to ensure that it is made ethically and sustainably. I take into account the type of fabric used, how it is made, where it is made, and whether the workers are paid fair wages. Sustainability is not just about the environment, but also about how the products we buy impact the people and communities who make them. I consider how the fabrics are sourced, how they are dyed, and what environmental impact the product has before making a purchase. All these are important factors in my decision making process.
How do you wind down at the end of the day?
I usually dedicate the end of the day to working on By The Sun, but it’s also important for me to set a cutoff time and start winding down. As an athlete, getting enough sleep is crucial. I try to eat dinner 3-4 hours before bed and then follow up with a soothing tea. I also make sure to do some recovery exercises for my body and finish off with my skincare routine, reading a couple of chapters before bed. Taking care of your body is essential for both physical and mental well-being. By taking the time to treat it properly, I am able to feel my best and have clarity of mind.
What’s dinner time look like for you?
Im a creature of habit so typically dinner is a rice or potato with protein and salad. I have a huge sweet tooth so I usually have some dark chocolate treats when I can. When I’m in Italy, i loveeeeeee a good pasta.
What does sustainability mean to you?
To me, sustainability and ethics are closely intertwined. The thought of creating something that would harm another individual is not something I can support. It’s all about the impact of what we consume and what we create. In everything I do, I strive to be mindful of this, and to work towards a better world for both the earth and the people who inhabit it. I believe that by being conscious of the impact of our actions, we can make a positive difference in the world.
What drives you to live a sustainable life?
As a professional athlete, I’ve had the opportunity to travel extensively over the past 10 years and have seen firsthand the negative effects of consumerism and fast fashion on individuals and communities. Whether it’s the impact on the people who make the clothes, or the environmental damage caused by the pollution from fast fashion, I have been deeply affected by what I’ve seen. I can never unsee or forget the harm it causes. What motivates me is the desire to create a more compassionate world. I believe that by shifting our mindset from “me” to “we” and being more compassionate, we can make a positive impact. This is a mindset that I’ve learned through my experiences in sports, where working together as a team is essential to achieve the goal.
What are your favourite pieces on Rêve En Vert?
Of course I’d have to say our By The Sun pieces 🙂 I love all that we’ve created, but specially I love our Palma pants in Sky. Baby blue and crème color block in a silk-like material. They are the definition of dreamy and I love to style them with a pair of kitten heels.