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April 05, 2011


By Sarah Smith | Fashion


The arrival of bathing suit season offers a few chic styles we found particularly exciting. First up is Vilebrequin, celebrating its 40th anniversary with special-edition swim trunks ($550). The patchwork design features many of the company's most memorable pastel prints, including salamanders, starfish, fruits and kangaroos. Tommy Bahama's fast-drying Hybrid of Paradise trunks ($98) double as sporty cargo shorts with a fixed waistband, a proper zipper, a button and belt loops for those beach clubs with strict dress codes. Orlebar Brown continues to roll out its Edition series (a selection of shorts with the same visual theme) such as its the Dog collection ($285), featuring digitally printed close-ups of man's best friend, and the Alan Aldridge collection ($325), displaying colorful illustrations by the artist. For serious surfers, there's the new Blade short ($110) from Oakley. It has a saltwater-durable inner compression short to increase muscle power and therefore the rider's control of the board. The outer short fabric has a nanotech coating that repels waters rather than allowing the fabric to absorb it, and it can stretch up to 120 percent.

For women, there's the debut of Thom.Dolan, a new line from Bill Blass and Ralph Lauren veteran Thomasine Dolan. Her Whitney suit ($165), an all-cotton, madras triangle-top bikini, is lined with a men's striped-shirt pattern that would be right at home on Nantucket. Cult designer Lisa Marie Fernandez has debuted a few new wetsuit-inspired numbers, including the amethyst-hued neoprene Nikki bikini ($345) with self-tie straps, curve paneling details and low-rise briefs.

Photo Courtesy Vilebrequin