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June 24, 2011 12:01 AM

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Summer Fridays Swim: Mara Hoffman

Designer Mara Hoffman might be best known for her namesake line of vibrant, flirty ready-to-wear -- often spotted on the likes of Drew Barrymore, Halle Berry, Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez, Nicky Hilton and many more -- but her swimwear collection...

Designer Mara Hoffman might be best known for her namesake line of vibrant, flirty ready-to-wear -- often spotted on the likes of Drew Barrymore, Halle Berry, Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Lopez, Nicky Hilton and many more -- but her swimwear collection is quickly following suit. mara_hoffman1.jpgThough born and raised in Buffalo, New York before studying at Parson's in Manhattan and Central St. Martens in London -- locales not exactly celebrated for their beachy weather -- Hoffman's swimwear has a decidedly tropical lean, featuring her signature prints in bold, bright colors, sexy cut-outs and bustier shapes.

Initially debuted as part of her spring/summer 2009 runway show in New York, Mara Hoffman Swim has since launched into a full-fledged collection with runway shows at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim in Miami each year.

WWDb caught up with the designer to pick her brain about her beach must-haves and her favorite iconic moment in bikini history.

mara_hoffman2.jpgHow did you segue from designing ready-to-wear to swimwear?
I've actually been adding swim pieces to Spring RTW collections for many years but it wasn't until Resort 2009 that we made it its own collection. Many of the concepts and prints from the RTW flow over to swim and vice versa. It's all usually coming from the inspiration source.

Is there a swimsuit style you find universally flattering?
Hmmm, tough one. I think each woman is built differently, so it would be very hard to find one shape that would flatter all.

What is the biggest mistake you think women make when choosing a bikini?
Not trying new shapes. I think it's easy to get stuck on a shape they think works, but it's always good to try new ones out.

mara_hoffman4.jpgWhich style in your collection would be your go-to bathing suit?
Our black V-wire bikini.

What is your favorite bikini you've ever worn and where did you wear it?
A henna print bikini that I made and wore in Spain with my husband.

What is your favorite beach in the world?
Maybe Tulum or Jamaica!

What do you think is an iconic moment in bikini history?
Princess Leia when she is captured by Jabba the Hutt. So good.

The one piece -- yay or nay?
YAY!!

What are your beach day essentials?
Sunblock and water.

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