ERES DEVELOPMENT: Fresh from announcing it would close its U.S. stores, Eres turned to its wholesale prospects at Miami Swim Week, setting up a temporary showroom at the Webster boutique to meet with North and South American accounts.
“Our wholesale business is more important than ever and we have our whole Paris team here,” said Eres spokeswoman Celine Kaplan, adding the company is exploring franchises in Palm Beach, Fla., and Washington.
Accounts like Saks Fifth Avenue, and Caribbean and Las Vegas resorts checked out the 2011 collection that features unusual swimwear colors like hunter green, a pineapple print and frou-frous, the main embellishment theme that appeared on everything from belts to thongs.
HOME PLATE: While most shows took place at pools or the tents, two Miami designers opted for nontraditional venues for a hometown edge. At South Beach’s Bass Museum, Red Carter played up the art angle by staging a career retrospective with models posing as statues. New collections for his eponymous and Glam lines followed on a ramp-turned-runway. The message was a mix of exaggerated cutouts, strong straps and slits, one-shoulders, disco glitz and a newspaper print.
For her latest resortwear with halters, HotPants and thigh-high stockings, Krelwear designer Karelle Levy dressed burlesque dancers at fashion photographer Antoine Verglas’ absinthe bar La Fée Verte in North Beach.
POOLSIDE CATWALK: Swim week’s wave crashed the W the eve of the trade shows. Designers from boutique show start-up Salon Allure sent looks down a pool runway to a packed deck, as Melissa Odabash gave an intimate fashion show inside. Afterward, she was W Hotels’ global fashion director Amanda Ross’ guest of honor at a seaside-themed dinner in the penthouse with India Hicks, Lindsay Price and Dee Poon.
In town for a party, Poon was eager to check out the business side of swim.
“I love trade shows,” she said.
Though a SwimShow veteran, London-based Odabash said it was her first U.S. fashion show. Among 47 looks heavy on classic animal prints and one-offs encrusted in Crystallized-Swarovski Elements, a handful of dresses made their debut.
“My customers are going crazy for ready-to-wear. I already presold 50 of the dress I’m wearing,” she said of a white, beaded mini with long sleeves. “I’m very inspired by Sixties silhouettes worn by Raquel Welch and Bond girls.”
Ross, who’s curating exclusive fashions for the hotel that won’t be revealed until New York Fashion Week, made an exception for Odabash’s pieces because of swim week. It was a good sign of what’s to come.
SURF’S UP: The surf set wiped out the Webster for the opening of a pop-up shop touting all things related to the sport. Tori Praver, who gave a preview of swimsuits from her 2011 collection, was on deck to support professional surfer and boyfriend Danny Fuller, whose serene beach photographs hung in a makeshift gallery along with vintage surfboards loaned by old-time surfers from around the state.
Guests like Lorenzo Martone, Dee Poon and swimwear designers Mara Hoffman and Lisa Marie Fernandez perused wares like a new surfboard carved from a single piece of natural wood, plush men’s robes in wild patterns from Piombo, and reversible women’s swimsuits by Basta. A portion of proceeds benefit Surfrider Foundation.
The action continued all weekend. Matthew Williamson installed a pop-up shop on the top floor, and Brazil-based swimwear brand diNeila hosted a tanned soiree Saturday with much of the same gang plus model-as-muse Julie Henderson and Alejandro Santo Domingo.