Thomas Herd Thomas Herd | April 27, 2021 | People
Swimwear in Miami is no laughing matter. What you’re wearing, who you’re wearing, what you’re styling it with, and where you’re going are all so important in the Magic City. As we’re easing into the Spring/Summer season, this year will surely look a little bit different, given how much the fashion industry has changed and evolved in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. That said, it’s a great time to explore new trends and designers who are on the forefront of fashion’s future - like Paola Estefania.
The Venezuelan-born haute couture designer, who grew up in Florida surrounded by Miamia’s lifestyle scene, is now emerging as the hottest new swimwear designer to know this season. Estefania - known for her sophisticated pieces that have graced covers of Harper’s Bazaar, GLAMOUR, Playboy, Maxim and more - has her sights set on summer fashion and is introducing a collection of dazzling swimsuits that are a must-have for any beach bound babe, from the East Coast to the West.
Estefania sat down exclusively with Ocean Drive to discuss the inspiration behind the new line, perfect for mothers and daughters looking to twin this summer, available for purchase at https://paolaestefania.com.
What inspired this collection - tell us everything, form the color choice, to the use of rhinestones and shimmery material?
My daughter, Sofia, has always been the driving force of inspiration for all of my collections! She loves bold colors, especially gold, so I wanted to create something that incorporated everything she loves. I also created a one piece swimsuit for more conservative moms, that is still sexy and youthful at the same time. One of my favorite things about this collection is how our rhinestone fishnet fabric looks against the sunlight, it makes such a statement and pops beautifully against our metallic Lycra. These contrasts are perfect for spring and summer, and is exactly what every girl wants.
Miami Swim Week is coming up - how do you think swim trends will continue to evolve and change in the wake of COVID-19 as we see a new wave in the fashion industry?
I think now more than ever, people will continue to explore ways they can express themselves through fashion. Now that things are transitioning back to “normal” and people can start traveling, I am sure swimwear will have a major impact this year in setting new trends. Pairing your bikinis with a matching face mask, for example, is perhaps going to be the biggest trend this season.
As a designer, what do you hope people feel when they wear your pieces? What do Paola Estefania girls convey - who is your ideal buyer, if there is one (or many)?
I take pride in my clothes and believe every detail counts. Right from the start of dreaming up my designs, my team and I work hard to find ways to perfect each aspect of the garment to make it something truly special. My swimwear line is a new addition to my brand. I want my customers who love style, sophistication, feeling sexy, and feminine, to also feel powerful and confident when they wear my clothes. This is why my mommy-and-me swimwear collection is so versatile, and allows women of all ages, shapes and sizes to feel sexy while matching with their little ones.
In creating a mommy-and-me line, you're proving that women of all shapes, sizes, and at different times of their lives can still feel confident and sexy. As a pregnant woman now who never stopped working throughout the process, how important is it for you to really show how women can do it all and still feel empowered/beautiful while at work?
I am still working, even during my last trimester, which has been challenging, but I love what I do, and women can do it all! I have always worked hard with the intention to set the best example for my children. My daughter, who is now almost 3 years old, is the reason why I started my swimwear line in the first place. I wanted to include her in my brand throughout all of her growing stages, and it’s been such a delight watching her grow and finding ways of inspiration for my designs through her. As mothers we have huge responsibilities, and we must do our best to make our children proud. Latinas are hard working women, we live up to our good reputation!
Your pieces are super versatile - they can be dressed up/down and styled perfectly, especially for vacation, or if your beach day turns into a dinner. Tell us about the process of designing them this way.
I really love the idea of versatility in my designs. I wanted to create new cover up styles that could be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. It’s so special when you have a garment in your closet that makes you look good no matter how you style it. As I continue to develop this line, I want to be able to design something special for everyone, no matter the occasion!
How would you describe your personal style? As someone who has many roles - mom, boss, wifey, entrepreneur, immigrant, designer, stylist - how do you reflect who you are through the clothes you wear?
My personal style is bold, sophisticated and feminine. When I pursued a career in haute couture design, I did it with the intention to cater to the needs and desires of the modern international woman who enjoys distinctive and luxurious garments. In addition to my swimwear line, my mommy-and-me collection provides women of all shapes, sizes, and at different stages of their lives; the feeling of confidence they may not had before. My designs not only represent who I am as an individual, but also who I am as a mother. This is extremely important for me. It is why all of my garments are constructed with the finest craftsmanship and materials. My swimwear collection is made for the modern women, who love to show off their confidence.