Swimwear just puts me in a dreamy, fun, happy, holiday mood. For me, being on a beach is like suddenly landing in a parallel universe. It’s a peaceful world with no complications, except when you should take your next swim or drink your next coconut water. Beyond that, you have the exquisite beauty of nature all around.
I love Goa. For me, it’s magic. I also adore the beaches in Thailand, Greece, California, Nusa Dua in Bali, St Tropez and the Caribbean.
Basically, I’m beach-obsessed and that was what made me start my own beachwear line.
When I’m by the sea, my itinerary reads like this: swim, eat, read, sleep, swim, tan, meditate, cocktail time! And, though I haven’t been there yet, I’m laying my bets on Brazil being the country with the best beach culture.
I think my first swimsuit was a pink, frilly, polka-dotted one-piece (every little girl’s fantasy). I must’ve been about two years old; when I think about it, I have a flash of being in Disneyland.
I have had too many swimsuits (maybe a hundred) over the years to remember them all. In fact, I collect bikinis. My friend Priti Paul gifted me a Cavalli leopard print bikini a few years ago. It’s a halter-style top with gold tassels at the ends and a low-rise boy-ish bottom. The fit is perfect and I love the animal print. I also love my two Rosa Cha bikinis. The Brazilian brands get it just right. However, they are somewhat unforgiving. So, you have to be in super shape.
Of late, I have started doing a mix-and-match thing with my swimwear. It’s quite hippie-like. A brown-striped bottom with a fuchsia tube—it’s unexpected and fun. But my current love is a pretty Missoni bikini, which was a gift from a friend. It is a typical Missoni weave and has shades of blues and beiges which look surprisingly cool together. The shape is nothing unusual—it’s a front-knotted bikini top and has a little bit of gold detailing. It’s just very comfortable and easy.
Swimwear is getting a little more conservative and one-pieces are making a comeback. As far as accessories go, tiny shorts, a straw hat and your biggest sunglasses are a must. Everyone has their personal sense of style, so looking great on the beach is not only about the swimsuit, but all the other elements as well, such as the sunglasses, sarongs, kaftans, flip-flops and beach bags.
Try bikini tops that can transform your look and go from the beach straight into a party (the bandeau is a good style for this).
We all have issues with our bodies, but when I’m on the beach, I really don’t care. If a woman is comfortable with her body she can really get away with anything. There are hundreds of styles of swimwear, and something for everyone. For women who can’t ignore body issues, a one-piece will cover up better than a bikini.
(Malini Ramani is a Delhi-based fashion designer)