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Without a doubt Swim Week's hottest ticket this year was Mara Hoffman's presentation at Casa Casuarina (a.k.a the Kardashian-revered Versace mansion), and the crowed that gathered outside definitely proved it. Sure, we waited over 45 minutes to get in, sweating as we would during any Miami weekend in July, but once inside our woes were immediately remedied by an amazing Swim 2016 collection (and maybe some refreshing green tea and vodka cocktails), which Mara described to us before the show as "A Moroccan Dream."
The acclaimed designer informed an eager crowd at Thursday's Fashion for Breakfast event at Cecconi's that she first worked for Sex and The City icon Patricia Field and would give herself mini challenges every morning before heading to class at Parson's to make her own clothes. Over a decade has passed since launching her eponymous fashion label, where each line grabs inspiration from her Bohemian lifestyle traveling the globe.
Whereas year's Swim collection contained loud and bold prints and colors– motifs she gathered while traveling in Guatemala– this year she was entirely inspired by Marrakech, and contained a heavy dosage of black and white patterns, garnished with peacocks, banana leaves, and centrally placed suns on cutout bikinis and one pieces. We chatted Mara up before her out of this world presentation, so read on and scroll through for a full visual recap of the collection.
Were you nervous putting together this presentation?
No, it's normal– just logistical situations. The girls look amazing but it's just getting it all together.
What inspired your Swim 2016 collection this year?
A trip to Marrakech over the holidays and kind of like a 1970s Bianca Jagger, Yves Saint Laurent tie.
You are one of the most revered fashion designers at the moment. How do you stay so grounded and down to earth?
My family. My husband and my son. I just have a normal life besides being a fashion designer.
You mentioned at Fashion for Breakfast that you like to get out of New York a lot. Where are you vacationing these days?
For me, to take a big trip, I like to go somewhere cultural and warm. This last trip was Marrakech, before that was Guatemala, I'm thinking about Bali. So some place I can collect inspiration and be warm, because I'm sort of like a snake. I like to be warm all the time, and cold all the time. Also, going upstate and hanging in the woods.
You just expanded into activewear. Is there any other category you'd like to go into?
For now I need to cool my jets, be still, and focus on what I'm doing.
I feel like so many people and fast fashion brands knock off your aesthetic. How do you deal with that?
I evolve and I grow and I change. And I have a really good intellectual property lawyer and I go after every single person who does it– so if you're thinking about doing it you'll get an email or a letter from my lawyer!
What you think about Miami style?
I think it's unapologetic– It's sexy! It celebrates body, beauty, and feminine form.