The secret of the perfect bikini
The traditional bikini consists of hardly more than three tiny triangle-shaped pieces of fabric. I decided you deserve better than that.
The original bikini, a French invention dating back to 1946, is a design classic. Three small curtains basically, connected by flimsy pieces of string. Great in theory, but have you ever tried to play beach volley in one? Boy, when those curtains start shifting, you end up showing much more than you bargained for. (unless you’re trying to distract the opposite team of course, in which case: scoooore!).
The beach is one of my favorite places to be active; I like nothing better than running along the shoreline while the sun is rising, followed by some push-ups and a refreshing swim. And so I’ve always thought it was pretty ironic that about 80% of the bikinis that are made don’t offer enough support for the stuff you love to do on the beach. In most cases, they can’t even survive a simple dive in the pool!
I see designing the perfect bikini or bathingsuit as a wonderful 3D puzzle. What do I want to hide, what do I reveal? It’s a never ending search for the perfect proportions. I want you to be comfortable, confident and ready for action. I want you to have enough coverage, without looking swaddled. And for that, I have plenty of tricks!
First of all, I’ve given my bikini-tops and bathing suits wider shoulder straps and sturdy cups, often using under-wire. I like to add padding, so you don’t have to worry about your nipples making an unexpected appearance. Yes, my tops cover your breasts more than a traditional string-bikini would, but through a clever play with lines and proportions you still look sensual and playful.
For each look, you can choose from two to three different types of bottoms. I’ve discovered that cutting the leg quite low and so covering a substantial amount of the groin area is flattering for any body type (an added bonus: you don’t need to get a full Hollywood wax each time you go the beach). And when a brief has sides measuring about 5 cm, both your hips and belly are covered just enough for you to be comfortable all day. Call it my personal magic formula. If you want to play around with different levels of coverage though, I suggest trying my ‘fold down briefs’. The flexible waistband of these bottoms can be folded up, covering the tummy, or folded down, leaving the tummy free and allowing you to avoid those pesky tanning lines.
And yes, I also make my own version of the classic triangle bikini bottom. But the way I designed it, I promise that it stays in place all day and you won’t lose it after a dive in the pool. Because the bottom line (hehe): you want people to look at your bikini, not your bottom, right?
NO ONE like me
As liberal and open-minded as Marlies Dekkers is now, during her childhood she was equally conservative. “Every night, I would be on my knees, praying my Hail Marys.” Still, that period is precious to her; it has shaped her into the power woman she is now. This year, Marlies celebrates being in business for 25 years, the perfect opportunity to look back at her milestones.
Governed by NO ONE
Flame-haired, brave-hearted and always dressed to dazzle, Elizabeth the First, also known as England’s ‘Virgin Queen’, is one of the most unforgettable women in history. Her glorious reign is known as The Golden Age ~ a period that saw the birth of Shakespeare, the defeat of the Spanish Armada and the emergence of England as a world power. It lasted almost 45 years; Elizabeth’s legacy as a feminist icon however, has already spanned nearly 5 centuries. “My sex cannot diminish my prestige.”
Only 11 days after he beheaded his second wife (the flamboyant Anne Boleyn), King Henry VIII married a pale, fair-haired maiden called Jane Seymour. Who exactly was this girl, and what had made the king so besotted with her? To this day, historians don’t quite know what to make of her.
Glamour, the magical power of persuasion