Shopping for bathing suits is a painful summer necessity. I can’t think of a single woman who enjoys it, no matter the shape of her body. When it comes to bathing suits, I tend to hang on to the same, worn-out sting bikinis I’ve been wearing since my camp days. They’re sun-bleached at best. And while I’ve discovered a few winners at J.Crew over the years and wear their classic cuts often, for the most part, I’ve fallen into swimwear malaise.
That is, until I stumbled across a revelation. I’d heard about through the fashion grapevine, but she was more of a distant West Coast illusion than a reality for my bathing suit wardrobe (she’s based in Vancouver). Turns out, the Canadian designer makes the coolest suits out there, as I discovered while browsing at Toronto’s a few weekends ago. (Trust another Western import to bring Richards to my attention.)
I’ve never fallen for a swimsuit so quickly. It was a confidence in buy no unflattering dressing room lighting or wintry pale skin could alter. And I was validated when I debuted the bikini top at a cottage weekend a few weeks later and was roundly complimented by friends both male and female, and further when an Instagram shot was littered with comments not about how beautiful the landscape was or how cute a couple we were (it was a shot of me and my BF), but questions from similarly fashion-obsessed girls pleading for the source of my suit.
I’m not looking back, and have started stalking sites for other Beth Richards styles, all coolly edgy, most mesh-inlaid, and—Yes!—she did camo for fall. Are you in a swimwear malaise? Snap out of it and get yourself one of these maillots. Soften the blow to your credit card with the knowledge you’re supporting local talent. I want one of her one-pieces next.