Swim Week 2012

Swim Week Rolls On

© Arturo Paulino / MFb

Sunday night’s shows at the Mercedes-Benz Miami Fashion Week might have been met with a downpour of rain, but it didn’t stop the designers from showing off their trendy collections in the most exciting atmosphere we’ve seen yet (Thursday night might have had the stars, but Sunday night was when the real party started.) 

Brazilian designers Cia.Maritima and SoCal gal Lisa Vogel put on shows with big hair, fashion and attitude with energetic soundtracks to match, while designers such as Luli Fama and Lisa Blue put on shows that highlighted their heritage and roots. There was no denying that each collection was all about sexy, cheeky cuts, highlighting cutting-edge trends in both day and evening swimwear.

Cia.Maritima / Arturo Paulino / MFb© Arturo Paulino / MFbCia.MaritimaCia.Maritima

If Saturday night brought us sixties and seventies nostalgia, then Cia.Maritima's show in the Grande Cabana was all about the decade that brought us rock ‘n roll-inspired looks with plenty of big hair, short denim shorts and snakeskin embellishments.  The Brazilian design team’s show was accompanied by an Aerosmith soundtrack and models who rocked the runway with eighties inspired fringe, wild animal prints, plenty of crystal beadings and an oh-so-sexy attitude to match.

Leopard tanks, butterfly one piece cut outs, tie die one-shoulder pieces, studded triangle tops and denim string bottoms and clutches marked the look for this collection with models that looked ready to take on the beach in fierce looks and daring cuts from a decade in which the hair might have been big, but the bikinis were anything but. 

A few show standouts included a halter top and tie side bottom matches with special collection denim shorts, a special collection top with fringe detail and animal string bikini and a wild snake embellished one piece that closed the show.

Luli Fama / Arturo Paulino / MFb© Arturo Paulino / MFbLuli FamaLuli Fama

The pouring rain outside The Raleigh’s pool deck didn’t stop this show from having the biggest party atmosphere yet.  Hosted inside the Oasis tent, it was undeniably hot and packed, but Cuban-born, Miamian Luli Fama put on a show (and we really do mean show) that looked like a Rio de Janiero-meets-Havana-meets-Miami ultimate soiree that went from samba sexy to Club Tropicana to pulsating nightclub beats all within the first ten minutes.

Fun, young, and sexy, Luli Fama’s collection was full of cheeky cuts, ruffled bandeau ruched bikinis and key hole tops that would work perfect from Miami’s white sandy beaches and straight to the nightclubs.  Although there were plenty of pieces that went back to the bikini basics, Luli’s hip, streamlined designs were sophisticated, festive, and flirty.  Electric blue and pretty in pink looks ruled this show along with mini twist dresses, fringe studded accessories, and sequined bikinis. 

A strapless “Pachanga” romper was a show standout, as well as a crystallized sexy multi-strap v-bandeau ruched back monokini and crystallized ruffled cover up that was matched with a Cuban-inspired crystal-studded fedora that closed the show and was a notable nod to the designer’s Cuban roots.

Luxe by Lisa Vogel / Arturo Paulino / MFb© Arturo Paulino / MFbLuxe by Lisa VogelLUXE by Lisa Vogel

Lisa Vogel’s Luxe show in the Grande Cabana was nothing short of luxury-meets-lust with million-dollar looks best worn on the world’s most expensive yachts and hideaway beaches. The collection showed off an upscale look and feel with form flattering designs and plenty of big hats, and Jackie O.-inspired shades along with accessories that included modern feathers and frills.

There were plenty of swim-ready triangle and halter tops, tankinis, and tunics in virgin white and sandy-colored shades mixed with a few crush orange, fuchsia and sea green and blue pieces.  Show standouts included a multi-colored triangle bra and tie side pant and decadence jumpsuit in black along with a plunge maillot in black and multi-colored “foxy lady” maxi skirt. Overall, the collection was clean, contemporary and smart, with every sense of the word “luxe” resonating from each piece.

Lisa Blue

Lisa Blue is one of many Australian designers to bring their collections to Miami, but her collection went one step further in highlighting her country’s culture by incorporating original Aboriginal artwork in her pieces, and even bringing an aboriginal model to walk the runway in the swimwear designer’s stunning pieces.

Perhaps the most creative show we’ve seen yet, the Byron Bay-based designer showcased an explosion of color, with plenty of blues, purples, and blacks that were combined with a galactic theme with metallic panels of gold and silver. There were plenty of body suits with interesting Sci-Fi cutouts and bikinis with high-wasted bottoms that were accessorized with metallic studs. The collection was incredibly young, fresh and trendy and wearable with pieces that looked like they would work well with a pair of jeans or skirt for a nighttime look.

The final night on Monday will close Mercedes Benz Miami Fashion Week with show offerings from diNeila Brazil, a group show featuring A.Z. Araujo, Aguaclara, Aquarella, and Have Faith Swimwear along with individual shows from Kooey Swimwear Australia (their first solo show in the U.S.), Nicolita, Sonia Vera Swimwear and Jogo Beach.

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