Early on in our conversation, Tayler jokes to me that “within their friend group, Sam is known as the loungewear aficionado.” As an aficionado, Sam had never quite found a brand that hit all the prerequisites of the ideal comfort-first brand. There were brands that had beautiful material, but the fit wasn’t right. Or perhaps she found a great brand aesthetically, but the production didn’t prioritize sustainability. “If [Sam] doesn’t know about it, then it doesn’t exist,” Tayler recognized, coming to the realization: “We had found a gap in the market.”
So they spent the better part of three years researching and developing what would eventually become Ocio Leisure. When I ask Sam her favorite thing about running Ocio, the answer comes back to this initial ethos of the brand. “For me, it’s been the sustainability side. I’ve always been a fan of shopping sustainably, and getting to really truly deep dive and understand just how extensive it is and just how hard it is to truly claim to be sustainable—and not just slap a label on it and call it day—is something we’re very proud of,” Sam explains. Early on, they hired a sustainability manager to cement the commitment to the concept as a core value of the brand.
Sustainability was the first hurdle to overcome; years later, everything Ocio sells is manufactured in a five-mile radius in Los Angeles. “We really work to reduce our environmental impact, significantly,” Tayler echoes. Transparency in prodcution has also been a huge priority for the brand; the two go hand in hand. You can read essentially everything about Ocio’s production process, the materials and more here.
They eventually created a custom fabric to check all the boxes, the more lightweight material they used in their first collection—which debuted last year. They did a second collection for F/W last year, utilizing a heavier material and more oversized silhouette for the cooler months. This third collection marks the introduction of shorts comprised of the heavier material into the brand's repertoire.