Way back when, during fashion week (which seems like eons ago at this point), tucked away in the fabulous and sexy, newly opened Covet Lounge, I viewed Cala Ossidiana’s Spring/Summer Collection of gorgeous swimsuits.
Cala Ossidiana, which literally means “Obsidian Beach” was inspired by a volcanic cove on the Aeolian Island of Lipari, just off the coast of Sisley. Inspired by the incredible color of Obsidian (a rich navy blue-black with oil-like sheen) and the other beautiful colors of the intense blue sea, in combination with the obsidian of the volcanoes and sea glass on the waters’ floors, designer Anne Pachan nails the sophistication of the island.
With many years behind of her in technical sweater design, the elements of creating a well-fitting swimsuit, “are more similar to designing sweaters than you’d think,” says Pachan. Had it not been for the explanation that followed, I might’ve sat there scratching my head for awhile…
It makes sense, in a way, despite the fact that they are almost polar opposites—in that a sweater adds bulk, whereas a swimsuit is something that shows off the body’s shape—the fibers and fabrics are different than traditional garments for both and both are extremely technical in flattering the body’s shape.
Because of her background, Pachan nails the fit, from teeny-bikinis to flattering form fitting one pieces, that will make any girl, no matter what her size, feel sexy and confident on the beach…to prove it, a “larger” model (I found out later from Pachan she was a size 8…huge, I know…read: sarcasm…she looked amazing) strutted the runway in the standout teal hue bikini with Japanese knots and looked incredibly amazing whilst doing it.
With ties that create ruching and some that feature Japanese knots, each suit is adjustable to your specific body type, creating a better fitting bottom and top, giving the pieces a “tailor-made” fit. The hand-tied Japanese knots featured on some of the one-pieces and bikinis offer an almost couture element, in that each knot is hand-tied (read: a person ties these knots, not a machine) and because the knots are hand-tied, each one becomes perfectly adjustable, offering you more or less coverage, based on your comfort level/need.
Additionally, bikinis with a glimpse (a tiny triangle) on the backs of the bottoms in complementary colors and one pieces with extra Speedo-esque straps, give a solid swimsuit a sophisticated update. Other pieces include hints of peek-a-boo mesh, offering a sexy, but refined look.
My favorite thing about the line is that it’s all created here in the U.S., right over the bridge in Brooklyn, in fact! Although the cost of having them made in the U.S. is higher, this way, Pachan is able to oversee every aspect of the design process, ensuring that every suit is hand-cut, hand-dyed and hand-tied, for excellent quality and fit.
Additionally, the fabrics used to create the suits are made with Xtra Life LYCRA® fabrics. Xtra Life LYCRA® is an almost zero-impact fabric, which means it’s better for the environment and better for the life of your swimsuit. It’s resistant to suntan lotion and body oils better than traditional spandex, resistant to chlorine 10 times longer than traditional spandex, resists bag and sag and because of that, keeps your swimsuit fitting like it’s brand new much longer.
The line features 22 pieces in the colors inspired by Lipari and pieces range in price from $125-$300, which is very reasonable considering it’s made in the U.S. and is made with Xtra Life LYCRA®. Right now, Cala Ossidiana is available in select retail boutiques around the country, as well as online.
I can’t wait to wear my Cala Ossidiana Knot-back Maillot in turquoise to the beach…it literally is going to be the suit I wear from now on…oh summer, where did you go and when are you coming back?!
The jewelry for the show was provided by Amanda Pearl. Photography courtesy of Hunter Muse, Elimar Coelho and BlaBlaBlaNYC. Photography below, courtesy of calaossidiana.com.