While last summer was about minimalist, classic swimsuits with clean lines and symmetrical structures, this season’s designs throw all that away. From velvet two pieces and sporty ’80s high-cut briefs, to non-conformist cuts and patterns, swimwear designers are making bold statements this season.
Karla Spetic Swim
In two words: wearable surrealism.
Top pick: Azores One Piece
Price range: $98–$198
This Sydney womenswear designer has been doing swimwear since 2012 and often uses digital prints and bright colours to realise its playful vision. Spetic’s latest Lucid Dreams collection shows off the female form with rounded cut outs revealing the hips and emphasising the waist. The pieces are made from 100 per cent regenerated nylon (salvaged plastic and nets from the ocean) and are currently available for pre-order in classic black and white, electric orange or bubblegum pink.
In two words: playfully sleek.
Top pick: Handmaiden One Piece
Price range: $194–$224
If anyone were to make a green-and-pink colour-block bikini look good, it’s Misha Hollenbach and Shauna Toohey of P.A.M. This season the Melbourne label’s swimwear features panels of contrasting colours with a focus on clean lines. There’s also two collage-print one-pieces thrown into the mix because it’s not a P.A.M collection without an eye-catching graphic.
In two words: feminine fun.
Top pick: Pink Velvet Bralette Bikini
Price range: $79–$289
After launching a decade ago in Bondi, this swimwear label is now stocked internationally. The label’s latest range plays with shirring, velvet and knitted fabrics. The cuts are varied and there are many, ranging from skimpy bikinis, to sporty-style tops, strapless one-pieces and tied bandeaus.
In two words: sexy and supportive.
Top pick: The Base Lipari
Price range: $70–$230
This is the label that has every big-busted woman sighing: “finally”. Melbourne designers Carly Warson and Stephanie Korn launched The Fold earlier this year to cater exclusively to those with a D-cup and above and the label focuses on supportive construction and high-quality materials. You can pre-order a classic one-piece and a limited range of bikinis in soft colours.
In two words European summer.
Top pick: The Linda
Price range: $170–$200
Drawing on a palette of high-voltage blues and pinks, as well as neutrals, this Melbourne swimwear label is anything but boring.
The Angelina one-piece cuts diagonally from the top of the bust to reveal a plunging back, while the Casablanca bikini involves a sportier-style bandeau. All but one of the styles features a built-in bra, and all pieces are made from recycled nylons, which are woven in Italy.
In two words: ’80’s glamour.
Top pick: Vino Top
Price range: $59–$115
Bamba makes the kind of swimwear that doesn’t leave much to the imagination. The Western Australian-based label is well known for its high-cut bottoms, but the most popular style is undoubtedly the Vino bikini top, with its elongated contouring underwire.
In two words: olympic high-fashion.
Price range: $149 – $169.
This Sydney-based athleisure label has extended its track-style colourways and designs into swimwear. Sporty one-pieces are branded with the P.E Nation logo, while racing stripes of blue, white, black and red accentuate the waist.
Price range: $120 – $180 USD.
Based in Brooklyn, Solarium Swim peddles the sporty ‘80s attitude, from high-cut bottoms and waist ties to bold stripes. The ‘50’s polka-dot twist bandeau and tie-up bottoms are an antidote to all the Baywatch shapes. Each piece is handmade in New York from recycled polyamide.
In two words: boldly sustainable.
Price range: $55 – $110.
Re-swim is all about minimising waste. Each swimsuit is made from leftover fabrics and off-cuts that designer Natalie Ivanov sources from a factory she works part time as a seamstress in Adelaide. Re-swim Club’s looks come in boldly-coloured magentas, purples, leopard prints and tie dyes and cuts range from classic to ‘80s.
In two words: vintage Australiana.
Top pick:Madi Top Aussie Wattle
Price range: $80 – $170.
Designer Katherine Hampton produces every original print in-house. The Sydney label’s spring-summer 2018 range is awash with pink gingham, kitschy ‘70’s sunflowers, wattles and kangaroos. The range is sizeable with bikinis that come in all sizes with high-waisted bottoms and one-pieces too.
In two words: Sunset surfing.
Top pick: Hakea Wave One Piece in Nude/Clay
Price range: $70-$185.
This new surf swimwear label strips away all the neon from typical surf gear to create streamlined pastel-and-terracotta-coloured rashies. In addition to the core bikini-bottom styles, there’s a wide array of high-necked tops, long sleeves and zip-up suits for those who are looking for a little more coverage.