Swimsuits, Sweaters, and Summer Style

From l, Culture swimsuit model and Margie Barron.

What’s on your radar for summer essentials? Searching around town at events and style showcases I’ve talked to several experts in the fashion field and discovered the latest trend can be summed up in one glorious word — comfort!

Happily ladies of all ages don’t have to sacrifice style for comfort this season. If you can’t wear a teeny bikini, don’t. There are many alternatives for all shapes and sizes. The trendiest swimsuits don’t have the unflattering thigh-to-waistband French-cut to them anymore. Instead there’s a sporty and retro-look that has been embraced in a swirl of colors and prints.

Culture Swimwear designs recently showcased its summer collection at the Fashion Splash show produced by Mikey Koffman’s The Gallery Los Angeles. We saw aboriginal flavored prints in red, orange, blue, and browns that made the two-piece and one-piece swimsuits pop on the runway. Culture’s designer Hope Reiners says she personally loves one pieces, “and I really create styles that work for all body types. As for the trends this summer, I see a lot of bright colors. I’ve worked on creating prints that incorporate bright neon colors along with the neutral earthy prints throughout my collection.”

Threads that sparkle are also trendy this summer, especially for chic sweaters that make a fashion statement. Whether at the clubs, beach parties, date night, or girls’ night out, every lady can look super-cool in a comfy sweater.

Consulting an apparel expert, Sarah Cho, designer for the Belldini fashion line that specializes in knit designs, says, “Knits are very popular, especially sequin yarns with the newer softer fibers we use at Belldini. We are seeing a lot of bold color-blocking this season, pairing it with sequins and rhinestones. We also noticed lace-covered cut-outs are part of the fashion landscape.”

Belldini has chic cardigans and attention-grabbing rhinestone zip sweaters, along with twin-sets and other items in their full line of comfy, yet sophisticated, women’s apparel.

What are the colors of the season? Cho says, “As we all know by now, the color of the season is a bright, fun, reddish-orange. Sunkissed Coral in our collection is a fun bright coral hue that pairs great with black, white, and denim.”

She adds, “Our Tide Pool, which is an antique light teal, has also been a big hit this season since it looks great on blondes, brunettes, and red heads alike. Of course Fuchsia always looks great with our rhinestone zipper styles, as does our rich turquoise hues likeMediterranean.”

According to Cho the “must-haves” for a summer wardrobe include a nice sequin yarn piece. Not only is it glitzy and glamorous, but it is also incredibly trendy, a trend that will continue into the fall and even stretch to next spring.

Additionally, no wardrobe is complete without a great crochet cover-up. These pieces are great because you can pair them with jeans, or use them at the beach for over your swimwear.

Happy to explain why a great sweater is the perfect “accessory” for any outfit, Cho asserts, “because it is practical and can make a great statement. First of all, it just makes sense to always have a sweater whenever you leave the house. You never know how chilly it might get, indoors or out. A great sweater can complete any outfit. If you are feeling dull and drab, a gorgeous glamorous sweater can make your outfit pop and even make you feel more confident and beautiful. A perfect sweater not only compliments your look and style, but your personality as well.”

The fashionistas around town should look for outfits that provide maximum comfort without sacrificing style. Go for fun and flirty fashions, embellished with accents that sparkle, in a variety of hot colors that will make you look cool this summer.