While the fashion set flocks en masse to Miami on a few occasions every year — Art Basel and the Winter Music Conference being the most buzzy — the resort city was proud to be the home of its very own fashion week as well: Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim. The event mainly serves to introduce new swimwear collections from both indie and established designers to press and buyers from around the world, culminating in a trade show where retailers can place orders for the coming seasons.
In the past few years, MBFW Swim has grown in scale, especially now that so many ready-to-wear designers have taken on the swim category as well. Despite the momentum, IMG — which was purchased by entertainment talent agency William Morris Endeavor in Dec. 2013 — has decided to cancel this year's event, which was set to take place in July. "As part of IMG’s ongoing evolution of its fashion events business, the company is redesigning Swim Week to create a modern offering that better reflects the unique needs of its designers and partners," IMG said in a statement. The event will resume in 2016.
The announcement follows a series of changes IMG has made to New York Fashion Week in the last few months. Not only has the agency lost Mercedes-Benz as a title sponsor, it also acquired Made Fashion Week and said goodbye to Lincoln Center as NYFW's main venue, opting instead for locations further downtown like Skylight Clarkson in Soho. That changes are also coming to Fashion Week's sister event in Miami is not terribly surprising.
But do not fret, bikini babes and enthusiasts: An event called Funkshion Fashion Week Miami Beach Swim will take place in July, and will include comparable events and runway shows at hotels like the Setai and the SLS South Beach. Until IMG unveils its new plans for Swim Week, designers might have to bank on the all-important trade shows when it comes to getting their goods in front of the right eyes.