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20 Jul

Designer Spotlight: Flor De Piel

Posted by Bikini Owner

Meet Flor De Piel, the newest addition to our shop. This super-artistic bikini collection evolved under the watchful eye of photographer, graphic artist and textile guru-gone-swimwear designer Paola Martinez-Merigo. Here she lays it all out for us – why she’s so proud of her Mexican roots, the feminine aesthetic, and why it's more vulnerable wearing a bikini than going completely nude.



Do you apply your Mexican heritage to your art?

Yes, I’m Mexican — and very Mexican! I’m proud of my country and my roots, and I feel so blessed to have been born in Mexico. Our culture is so rich in colors, images, noises, odors — in a lot of different things and it’s impossible not to be influenced by it. The name Flor De Piel means "with deep emotion" — it is the exaltation of the senses. I try to express my designs with emotions, feelings, attitudes, to project the strength of the being of a woman.


Is it true you started as a textile designer and graphic artist? 

Yes. I studied graphic design, textile arts and photography. The sense of creating was always a need for me. Educating the eye is also very important when you create such an important piece as a bikini. You must consider the color of the skin, the color of the fabrics, the color of hair, of the beach; everything has to be an artistic composition. For me, being in a bikini is more intimate than being naked. It’s a minimum amount of fabric that is covering your body and you are exposed to everyone — it’s like being totally vulnerable, so you have to feel beautiful and secure wearing it. That’s why choosing the perfect bikini is so important for all women.


What's your favorite part of building a swimwear collection?

Imagining the new forms, observing the needs, the movements of women and then drawing them and choosing the fabrics. The process of being next to the seamstresses white they are crafting them – it makes me feel so much joy because I see my ideas come to life.


Where is the collection designed and made? 

Seven years ago I moved to Miami, so I design the collection here at my studio. I travel one week out of a month to Mexico, so a big part of my ideas and designs are also crafted there. The bikinis are manufactured in Medellin, Colombia, because the quality is impeccable, and I buy the fabrics in Italy. I’m a perfectionist, so I always try to find the best quality in my swimwear.


Where do you draw inspiration from?

My inspiration is always women — I love women, we are so powerful. All that we are is my inspiration – our emotions, our moods, our femininity, our sensitivity, the way we change moods, the way we cry, the way we love, how we pay close attention to all the details that make us feel beautiful in our own unique way. I love being a woman even with all the contrasts that we all have.


When designing, what girl do you have in mind?

I have in mind a true woman, one that is secure in her personality, in her body. It doesn’t matter the way it is because for me beauty is relative — a woman who is loyal to herself, who goes forward, who is not afraid, a natural one and a free soul.


What's the most special piece you've designed and why?

My first piece is the Mila bottom. I named it after my oldest daughter. When I designed it, I was looking for a perfect bottom for me. I always love to wear chains around my waist – body jewelry is a part of my style. I was thinking how I could integrate that sense of wearing delicate and feminine jewelry with a bikini that can come together as one. That’s how I came about with the idea of the little braid around the waist, attached to the bikini and using the same material. It’s the perfect flow between jewelry and a bikini bottom. I loved the way they complement each other.