Fashion

Reinventing the Bikini? Miami Swim Week Returns With Perfect Poolside Trends

What will you be rockin' poolside? Gotta attend Miami Swim Week to find out.
What will you be rockin' poolside? Gotta attend Miami Swim Week to find out. Photo courtesy of DC Swim Week
Miami Swim Week returns this week, and it's looking like it's going to be bigger and better than ever.

From July 13-18, fashionistas will get a chance to experience extravagant runway shows, VIP events, lavish dinners, and exclusive parties. This year's show puts the spotlight on over 100 up-and-coming and established designers from around the world.

Swim Week has become a mecca for designers, artists, and industry insiders to experience luxury swimwear in a whole new light. It's the largest gathering for swim and resort wear in the world. While its main goal has been connecting designers to buyers, over the years it has expanded beyond the who's who of the fashion industry.

It started in 2004, when International Management Group (IMG) teamed up with Mercedes-Benz to bring a fashion week to Miami. Known as Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim, and based at the Raleigh Hotel, the event quickly became a huge attraction for its glamorous runway shows and invite-only trade events. It also attracted celebrities, jet setters, and industry folk looking to network and party.

In 2015, Mercedes-Benz ended the partnership and IMG made the decision to postpone its Swim Week presentation, saying it needed to "create a modern offering that better reflects the unique needs of its designers and partners." Despite implying it would return the following year, IMG skipped out on 2016 as well.
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From bikinis to board shorts, swimwear comes in many different shapes and sizes.
Photo courtesy of DC Swim Week
Other shows, like Swim Fashion Week and Swim Miami, filled the void, while the organization known as SwimShow took over the trade show at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

Nowadays, Swim Week events are organized by production companies like DC Swim Week (under the name Miami Swim Week the Shows), with other offerings this year by Art Hearts Fashion, Paraiso Miami Beach, and the Society Fashion Week.

"Our promise to the industry is the connection," explains Moh Ducis, CEO of DC Swim Week (DCSW). "If there are 3,000 people but the designs aren't connecting, it's a party, and that's not what we promised. We want to curate an experience. We also want to make it more accessible to people who are not in the industry."

Even in 2020, DCSW managed to create connections with the fashion industry and audiences. During a two-day event at Faena Miami Beach in October 2020, DCSW organized runway shows featuring 25 local labels, half of them Black-owned. In keeping with COVID restrictions at the time, the event featured scaled-back attendance, mask mandates, and a livestream for those who couldn't attend in person.
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Supermodel Swimwear will exhibit at Miami Swim Week the Shows this year.
Photo courtesy of DC Swim Week
Things are pretty much back to normal this year for DCSW. The designers presenting at this year's Miami Swim Week the Shows include Supermodel Swimwear, Brasilia Swim, Hamade Activewear, Ema Savahl, Jams by Jillian, Brice Swim, and Misé. DCSW will also introduce a fully interactive web3 luxury swimwear fashion runway that will be featured on the metaverse. The goal is to widen its borders and expose the event to a larger audience.

"Digital swimwear fashion in a decentralized metaverse provides a leveled playing field and equal opportunity and empowerment to designers and artists around the world. No one has ever seen these kinds of graphics or digital world we have created," Ducis says.

DCSW will also introduce nonfungible tokens (NFTs), providing social-impact swimwear fashion NFTs and offering influencers, VIP guests, and industry professionals the opportunity to acquire collectible NFT tickets.

Beyond DCSW's offerings, events by Paraiso and Art Hearts Fashion will highlight designers like Custo Barcelona, Christian Audigier, Nike Swim, Bodyglove, and Beach Bunny. The industry-only trade event SwimShow also returns to the Miami Beach Convention Center July 16-18.

Miami Swim Week the Shows. Wednesday, July 13, through Monday, July 18, at SLS South Beach, 1701 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; dcswimweek.com. Tickets cost $50 to $1,999 via eventbrite.com.

Art Hearts Fashion. Thursday, July 14 through Sunday, July 17, at Faena Forum, 3300-3398 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-534-8800; artheartsfashion.com. Tickets cost $65 to $3,300 via feverup.com.

Paraiso Miami Beach. Thursday, July 14, through Sunday, July 17, at Collins Park, 2100 Collins Ave., Miami Beach; 305-607-4918; paraisomiamibeach.com. Tickets cost $2,600 to $6,500.

Miami Swim Week Powered by the Society. Friday, July 15, through Sunday, July 17, at the Alfred I. DuPont Building, 169 E. Flagler St., Miami; thesocietyfashionweek.com. Tickets cost $49.95 to $199.99.
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