Swim Week: The Recap


{Wearing my favorite look from Swim Week on the night of Mara Hoffman’s presentation: Romper: c/o Kore. Necklace: c/o Kore. Shoes: Jimmy Choo (old). Bag: Chanel. Photographed at Sagamore The Art Hotel.}

Another Swim Week. Come and gone. For more than a decade now, I’ve been covering this Lycra-laden week. But this year was different. When I first heard IMG pulled out of Swim Week, my heart sunk. I have always enjoyed that Miami had a home on the fashion map—in my own home, nonetheless. I love going to the shows. I love seeing the fashion, the models, the hair, the makeup. I love going backstage and interviewing the designers. I love that I get to report on something before the rest of the world knows its coming. If there was no IMG, did that mean there would be no Swim Week?

Soon after the earth-shattering fashion announcement I heard through the blogger/journalist/PR/social media grapevine that Miami had taken the week into its own hands. Swim Week would prevail! That little nugget made me not just happy, but proud of this little sandbox I live in. Proud, because we knew we had something special and we weren’t going to let it go.

In the weeks leading up to Swim Week, however, my inbox started to reach invite proportions that not even Gmail itself could keep up with. Presentations were here, there and everywhere—most at the same time. It was starting to look like summer Basel. The rough sketch of my schedule resembled a ping pong ball ricochetting off one side of Miami and then the other. The structure of all the shows in a central hub, like past years at the Raleigh, was no more. But the fact that the same designers were still coming meant one thing: Game on, Swim Week. Game on. But how would all of this work out? There was only one way to find out.

The week itself left me wishing I had a clone. A clone with an overhead AC unit that followed her around. There was no way I could be at all of these places at the same time, no matter how much I wanted to. So, I made my must-see list and that became my Swim Week. And I love the things I saw:

The swimsuits at Wildfox at the Delano were young and fun just like I expected them to be. But yes, I did miss seeing the models rock it down the runway to music I shazam-ed the minute I heard it.

Mohini at the Shelborne was eye-catching. And air conditioned. A novel idea that, up until this year—for whatever reason—hadn’t happened yet.

Red Carter kept it real meeting with a few bloggers for drinks at SLS and a look at his latest, giving us snippets on what to expect cut-wise and keeping us laughing through the entire meet-up.

Melissa shoes offered an amazing sit-down brunch at Soho House and a look at shoes that blew mine right off my feet.

The Daytime Disco at Ocho was the most fun event I’ve been to in a long, long, long time.

And Mara Hoffman stole the show—yet again. In fact, when I sat down to write this post, I asked myself, “Self, which show are you going to highlight?” How could I not cover a boho bonanza at the Versace Mansion? In fact, Mara might have been the only show that made the right decision to do a presentation over a runway show. Everywhere you aimed your camera it looked like Vogue for the ’70s. It was sheer perfection. Something that could never translate on a runway. Yes, I was covered in sweat that puddled in my Choos waiting for it to start. And continued puddling while I gawked. Yes, it was the kind of sweat that makes you want to stay in your ACed Uber long after you’ve reached your destination. And sure I wound up in a line that made me feel like I was getting on Pirates of the Caribbean at Disney trying to get into the show, but the fashion itself set against the backdrop of what Versace created decades ago was gold. Solid gold. And it gave me this weird hope that maybe Miami can pull off a Swim Week on its own. Sure there were growing pains. But just as IMG’s Swim Week went from learning how to crawl before it could walk (I was there for all of them, including the first few with the tents with no AC … in Miami … in July), we, too, will come into our own. With time. Until then, I’ll remain happy and proud that this little city still celebrates the all-important bikini. Long live Swim Week.

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{Mara Hoffman at the Versace Mansion.}