North against South; it’s a bikini war!
Well, maybe not quite a war, but the world of beachwear is divided into two very distinct camps. Which side are you on?
I had, of course, noticed it before: in some cultures, women are not afraid to ‘let it all hang out’ on the beach, while in others, women prefer a bit of coverage. Think of the thong-wearing Brazilians versus the bathingsuit-loving Scandinavians.
But it wasn’t till I started designing swimwear that I learned that this is an actual phenomenon, and that fashion insiders speak of ‘Northern’ and ‘Southern’ countries when it comes to our preferences on the beach. A big part of it is geographical: North America compared to South America for example, or Northern Europe versus the Mediterranean countries. But a lot of it has to do with attitude.
The brands that cater to the Southern part of the market –Agent Provocateur and La Perla for example- have a tendency to put form over function. If you want frills, they’ll give you frills, even if those frills have a tendency to shift when you take a dive. Hey, as long as you look fabulous! But there are usually only 4 sizes available per style, so it’s very hard to find a bikini or swimsuit that fits absolutely perfectly. The funny thing: a true ‘Southern’ girl doesn’t seem to care. As Southern bombshell Sophia Loren once famously said: ‘Everthing you see, I owe to spagetthi.’ So what if some of that fabulousness cannot be contained by your bikini?
And then there are the Northern brands like Chantelle, Aubade, and Marie Jo. I count my own brand amongst them, because I decided early on that fit is very important to me. A Northern girl likes her curves just as much as a Southern girl; she just doesn’t like them spilling out of her swimsuit. And if she enjoys wearing a push-up bra under her clothes, she might expect her bikini top to give her the same kind of confidence on the beach. So for each theme, I design different styles to flatter all the different body types out there. And instead of merely 4 bikini-top sizes, you can choose from 24! Not the easiest way for a designer, I can tell you that, but to me, offering you confidence is my main motivation. ( I sometimes wonder if a ‘Southern’ woman wouldn’t prefer to have that same kind of choice, if her favorite brands offered it to her..)
So what are you? A Northern or Southern type? A Grace Kelly or a Brigitte Bardot? A Taylor Swift or a Sofia Vergara? Why not pick and choose, like Rihanna, who wears my ‘Northern’ designs on stage but does her holiday chilling in ‘Southern’ little nothings? After all, I believe in having your cake and eating it too, and finding the matching bikini to boot!
Trying to become a Maestro!
For a television program I am competing with 8 other Dutch personalities to become THE “Maestro”. The last few weeks have been nerve wrecking; I found my new passion.
My week; an inside look
I never have a week with a same sort of agenda as the week before, or the week ahead. That’s because I sometimes live the life of four different people.
Funny, Feminist and Fearless Lena Dunham
Writer, director, and feminist Lena Dunham was in town for her book tour. I have been a big Lena fan for quite some time, even before she was the well-known lady she is today.
Sisse Marie wears the Leading Strings
I really wanted to share the pictures of this powerlady with you. Sisse Marie seems to love wearing my designs and we all love to see her wearing it!