On Saturday, eager Mara Hoffman fans clamored outside of the former Versace mansion for what was surely the most anticipated event of Miami Swim Week 2016. Hoffman’s prints have graced the runways countless times in Swim Weeks past, but this year’s show was a transformative experience.
Inspired by a holiday sojourn to Marrakesh, Hoffman drew inspiration for her Resort 2016 collection from the textiles, art, and people of Morocco’s main city.
“I was just so in love with the time that Yves Saint Laurent spent at the Majorelle Gardens; it was the most beautiful garden in Marrakesh and he eventually bought it in 1980. I just loved that aesthetic and style,” the designer told New Times. Saint Laurent himself channeled his holidays at Majorelle in various collections throughout the 1970s, and Hoffman both channeled fashion's iconic past with her signature prints and boho chic.
The designer invited her guests into a fantastical utopia, where models had wild hair and smoldering eyes were perched atop Berber rugs and tufted pillows. Carved Moorish-inspired lamps illuminated the mosaic pool, psychedelic funk wafted through the air, and servers passed out Moroccan iced tea spiked with rum and fresh mint.
Hoffman’s trademark prints were splashed across swimwear and dashikis reminiscent of a jungle garden. Vibrant peacocks and embroidered desert flowers adorned high-waisted bikinis and cutout one-pieces. Black and white chevron in kaleidoscopic shapes clashed with pastel-hued kaftans and airy harem pants were covered with aloe leaves in vibrant turquoise hues.
The models were bejeweled with pieces from Singkiang by Linda Pastorino, whose vintage collection of amulets, pendants, and bangles sourced from Africa evoked the mystique of a Moroccan queen.
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The designer, dressed in a flowy white sheath, greeted her guests throughout the evening. Though hundreds of worn-out fashionistas waited over an hour in the July Miami heat, Mara Hoffman’s Resort 2016 presentation proved to be well worth the wait.