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3 of the best beachwear trends spring/summer 2011

This is such a lovely time of year, the evenings are getting lighter, spring has finally sprung and as we pack the winter clothes away for another year, we find ourselves daydreaming about getting to the beach and what we'll be wearing on our summer holiday. 2011 is an eclectic year for beachwear, with something for just about everyone, but there are a few strong trends we're seeing coming through. Here's our pick of the best of swimwear and beachwear trends this year. 1. 1950's Retro Pin-Up Girl This is a major trend that's inspiring most of our favourite swimwear and beachwear designers this season. What's really great about the retro 1950s pin-up girl look is it's both high-fashion and immensely flattering, especially if you're naturally curvy. The retro 50's pin-up look is all about creating the perfect hourglass figure; cinched in waists and accentuated busts and bottoms. Colours are classic; red, blue, black and white, with contrasting coloured trims, and prints are bold florals, polka dots or stripes. Pin-up girl bikini tops are generally either strapless or halterneck and bikini bottoms come high waisted with low-cut legs. Red or Dead have fully embraced the trend this season, with some gorgeous 1950's inspired swimsuits and bikinis. Their one pieces perfectly encapsulate this bygone era, with decorative buttons and piped trims. A classic example of 1950's glamour is this Jets by Jessika Allen Classique bikini which is effortlessly chic and incredibly flattering. Put the finishing touches on your poolside screen siren look with a pair of cats eye sunglasses and ruby red nails and lips. 2. Ruffles Ruffles are hot news this season, adding some cheeky frivolity to your springtime beachwear. Seafolly have incorporated ruffles into their swimwear and beachwear designs in a really big way this season, adding cute ruffle trims and tiers to their gorgeous, girly bikinis, swimsuits, dresses and separates. Although it's a fairly youthful trend on the whole, we're seeing some stunning one piece swimsuits with subtle ruffle trims that look fabulous for all ages. Gottex have used ruffles to great effect on some of their classic one piece swimsuits. 3. 1970s Hippy Chic We're sure in for a retro summer this year. As well as the pin-up girl look of the 1950's, the more laid back, hippy vibe of the '70s is making a massive comeback this summer. Wide legged trousers, button-through denim skirts, wide brimmed straw hats, oversized sunglasses, kaftans, head scarves, maxi dresses, cute little halterneck tops and platform sandals. The trend continues on to the beach and poolside with the free 'n' easy feeling reflected in swimwear and beachwear. The 1970's was the decade that saw the first string bikinis. Triangle cups with halterneck spaghetti straps and side-tie bikini bottoms were huge in the late '70s, along with more modest halternecks with wider straps and cute ties at the cleavage. You'll be spoilt for choice this season, with side-tie string bikinis making a big splash right across our brands, as well as halterneck bandeau tops with wider bikini bottoms and tie-front one piece swimsuits. Cute retro prints, ditsy florals and candy stripes complete the look. Check out Banana Moon and Roxy to get your ultimate '70s swimwear fix and Melissa Odabash for gorgeous floaty kaftans and maxi dresses. Top your outfit off with a big floppy hat and oversized shades and get ready for a '70s summer.

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Uncover the latest trends and expert tips on swimwear and beachwear. Our blog features insights from authoritative experts, guiding you to make the perfect seaside fashion statement.

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