Top: Silvia Tcherassi Campalto Robe
Shoes c/o Flor de Maria Collection
Bag: Lozza D Marin (larger size)
Nearly 6 months later, this girl put her heels back on and went to her first socially-distanced event. Whew.
Last week, The Upcycle Project asked me to participate as a judge at their second-annual Upcycle Mentorship Challenge in partnership with Paraiso Miami Beach. The competition engages student designers with the goal to increase awareness of sustainable practices by UpCycling dead stock fabrics from international swimwear and activewear designers.
I never imagined Swim Week could happen in the middle of a pandemic, but the team at Paraiso worked together with the City of Miami Beach to find a way to make it happen in the safest possible way – that included temperature checks and questionnaires at the door, a maximum capacity of 30 guests, hand sanitizers readily available throughout the venue, strictly enforced socially-distant seating arrangements, and mandatory masks. Made it happen? They certainly did.
If you follow me on Instagram, then you know I have been living that lockdown life; I only recently began to venture out in public for essential things and few (very few) work-related reasons. I took this opportunity to test the waters, and felt very comfortable with the precautions taken at the venue. We’re living during an unprecedented time, and in my nearly ten years of covering Miami Swim Week, this was certainly an unprecedented way to experience it. But boy, did it feel good to do something “normal” again.
As for the Challenge, I graciously accepted my friend Gaby’s invitation to serve as a judge. Each of the 5 design students from Miami International University of Art and Design were paired with a swimwear brand/mentor and charged with creating two original swim looks using headstock fabric provided by their brand. The winner was a personal favorite of mine, Raquel Zerbib mentored by Normaillot. Click here to watch the livestream from the competition.