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Little things mean a lot

When it comes to next season’s hot swimwear, the motto is less is more

True Religion True Religion (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
By Lisa Orkin Emmanuel
Associated Press / July 22, 2010

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MIAMI BEACH — Head to the gym for crunches — the bikini is back in a big way.

Designers from all over the world showed their new swimwear collections during the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim 2011, which ended Monday night.

Bikinis and cutout one-pieces dominated the catwalks. Some designers said they focused on bikinis because of the bottom line: They sell better. Others aimed for sexiness.

But can any figure wear them?

“I think it’s not about age. It’s not about your body,’’ said Luli Fama designer Lourdes “Luli’’ Hanimian. “While you feel good and it makes you feel happy, you wear that swimsuit.’’

Gold, hot pink, and turquoise were the popular colors. Gold hardware was used as embellishments in many collections. Designers also sent models down the runway accessorizing the suits with large, chunky necklaces and bracelets.

“Gold is definitely a trend. All the sparkling is really happening,’’ she said.

Mara Hoffman
Mara Hoffman’s swimsuits — mostly bikinis — were a kaleidoscope of color, including red, turquoise, and neon yellow. She used prints including a psychedelic one and a geometric print with images of an eye and a pyramid.

“I definitely carried again the inspiration of the mystic journey. It’s sort of my continual inspiration,’’ she said.

A tight, turquoise minidress had hot pink, lime green, and orange with an eye inside a pyramid and black straps on the back. A black one-piece had black crisscrossing straps around the stomach area. A black cutout had embroidery in the middle. A turquoise bustier had neon yellow, hot pink, and white geometric designs around the edges of the cups and sides of the bottoms. There was also a striking multicolored caftan for a “high priestess ’70s mystic mama feeling,’’ she said. It looked like it would cover up flaws, but add sexiness.

She also designed a wrap poncho cover-up with Alternative Apparel, and a dramatic high-waisted bikini with lattice detailing on the sides of the bottoms.

Swimwear-Anywhere Inc.
Swimwear-Anywhere Inc. showed several of the lines it has licenses for, including Marc by Marc Jacobs, DKNY, and Juicy Couture.

For Jacobs, the company showed a half pink, half blue bandeau top and bottom bikini and a blue bikini bustier with a matching skirted bottom. A model also wore a blue and pink geometric print one-shouldered piece.

For DKNY, a model wore a strapless blue and white maillot on a black background. There was also a beige, black, and brown striped maillot. Juicy Couture had several ruffled or skirted bottoms. A little girl also modeled a yellow bikini from the children’s line.

Carmen Marc Valvo launched his resort wear. The theme was safari, and shapes included halter jumpsuits, dresses, and cargo pants.

True Religion
True Religion stayed true to jeans. A model walked down the runway in a jean one-piece that had slashes in it. Just like jean pants, the suit gets more washed-out with every washing.

A jean bustier was worn with bikini briefs with a brown trim. There was a black bikini with gold studs. Another black bikini had hardware on it. An olive-green triangle bikini top was paired with short-short bottoms of the same color.

All the models were barefoot, and many wore scarves in their hair, hippie style. The vibe? Brigitte Bardot.

Cia.Maritima
At Cia.Maritima there were lots of animal prints, including crocodile and tiger. The color palette was mostly yellow, purple, light blue, brown, and white.

A cream and brown palm-leaf print bikini and matching cover-up were paired with a multicolored chunky necklace and bracelets. A model wore a long yellow dress with a turquoise necklace. An orange and purple tie-dyed top had silver beads around the neckline. A gold sparkly bikini was worn on top of purple harem pants.

Designer Benny Rosset said he was inspired by Morocco, but he focused on bikinis because of Brazil.

“In our country, in our culture, we wear more bikinis,’’ he said.

Luli Fama
Hot pink and turquoise were big trends at Miami-based Luli Fama’s show, as were bikinis and cutout one-pieces. An orange bandeau bikini was embellished with a gold starfish-shaped jewel. A turquoise one-piece cutout had gold-studded trim in the front. A multicolored triangle bikini also had gold hardware. For coverage, there was a turquoise minidress with a sea pattern with starfish and sea urchins.

The bikinis came in all colors and styles: a hot-pink bandeau bikini had a big bow on the chest and smaller one on the bottoms, a red bikini was embellished with a gold seashell in the chest area and one on the bottoms. There was also a gold studded bikini and another with a purple and white gingham pattern.

Nicolita
The Nicolita show was an homage to Cuba. Cuban-American Nicole Di Rocco went back to Cuba and filmed a documentary, and the trip influenced her collection.

“I have been able to develop the brand as well as develop my life and my personal journey,’’ she said.

A photograph of a mojito taken in Cuba was made into a custom print that was turned into a one-shouldered one-piece. There were lots of polka dots and braiding, and some models were sent down the runway with detached sleeves that were meant “to give a feeling of a night at the Tropicana,’’ she said.

A black bikini with black and white stripes on top was paired with polka-dot bottoms and black, white, and yellow sleeves, which created a little va-va-voom.