This summer may have felt a bit different from those before, as the pandemic continues to cause lockdowns and restrict travel, but despite it all, people have managed to safely enjoy themselves around the world. In Europe, the go-to destination of the season has been Mykonos. When scrolling through Instagram it’s almost impossible to miss a photo of some star, fashion influencer or backpacker living it up on the Greek island.
The brands below all admit to being inspired by the idea of a Mediterranean summer, and have released new designs that speak to the warm, glowy glam of Myko.
Lupita Tlatenchi, the owner of apparel manufacturing company GTLA Apparel Development. Inc., has been producing garments for fashion brands for years, but in 2019, when the pandemic hit, she needed a more creative outlet and decided it was time to make her design vision come to life. That’s how she started Loopé, a fresh, beachy, sustainable label for which she’ dropped various capsule collections.
Fan favorites include her airy, monochrome three-piece La Isla sets (made up of a collared shirt, a bralette and either a skirt, pants or shorts) made out of re-purposed materials.
“The La Isla collection was born from the urge to travel during the 2020 pandemic,” Tlatenchi said. “Dreaming of a tropical place while also feeling isolated from the norm … I wanted to create the perfect pieces that could be versatile, simple and chic—a minimalistic style that can be worn from island to everyday lifestyle.”
The Havana halter top from the collection is adjustable and can be worn more than nine different ways.
Tlatenchi, whose vacation muse is fashion and beauty entrepreneur/influencer Camila Coelho, said when she thinks about a Mykonos summer, she pictures “beautiful beaches, clear water, sun bathing, beach clubs and classic architecture.”
“Most of all, I think about disconnecting from the routine and diving into a beautiful escape from the ordinary,” she said.
The designer’s style is ever-changing, and she’s currently working on various designs for her upcoming capsule collection. She said what her customers want most in their wardrobes right now are minimal, timeless staples that are made ethically.
AMAVII founder Doris Ngie recalls a time a few years ago when she was shopping in Milan, Italy, looking for sunglasses, and couldn’t seem to find anything that truly complemented or fit her face shape.
“As an Asian woman, I have a wider face and lower nose bridge,” she said. “I thought, ‘Why aren’t there size options for eyewear like there are with clothing?'”
As a designer, she took the gap in the market as a challenge and in 2018 created AMAVII: the first premium eyewear brand to offer a size range that suits any face shape.
The sunglasses come in retro, classic, modern and chic designs and are made with Aerospace Titanium, which is the strongest and lightest metal for eyewear. Creating a pair of glasses requires 100 steps of craftsmanship and three months to make every pair.
Their Tom style is a bold take on the celebrity favorite Benjamin, “inspired by vacations in the Caribbean with a thick tortoise acetate mid bar in Havana color,” Ngie said. “The name of the sunglasses are inspired by my nephew, Thomas.”
When Ngie thinks of a Mykonos summer, she thinks of “tropical weather, palm trees and piña coladas by the pool.”
AMAVII’s designer said that this season, her customers are craving classic-shaped frames—such as rectangle and aviator—with vibrant jelly lenses, “for a pop of color.”
Greek designer Eleanna Tabouri founded Nevro just eight months ago, with the idea of creating the perfect contemporary blazer.
“Blazers are the perfect simplicity; however, they are made with extreme difficulty. The perfect blazer is architecture,” Tabouri said.
Her Blue Morpho blazer, with its sculptural design, sharp angles and high-contrast colors inspired by the butterfly of the same name, is part of the designer’s Find Yourself collection.
“The whole collection was inspired during lockdown, when we stayed in our homes, craving the return to normality,” Tabouri said. “During this period, I spent hours and hours watching documentaries, virtually visiting museums and art collections wherever I had the opportunity. Paintings like René Magritte’s ‘La Grande Famille,’ Pablo Picasso’s ‘Les Communiants’ and the ‘Men’ series by Gaitis Yannis were also part of the mood board for this blazer.”
Her elegant pieces are ideal for an elevated summer outfit, and when she looks to Mykonos for inspiration, she thinks of an “island synonymous with style and sophistication.”
“There is nothing quite like a Greek summer. The Greek summer feeling is endless. An internal journey, on a small piece of heaven on earth,” the designer said. “Mykonos perhaps is the star of the Cyclades, and for a good reason. It’s an island that can please any mood and any taste.”
To celebrate her Greek roots, Tabouri also debuted a collection of 100% organic cotton T-shirts, each with a different “Nevro Icon,” such as Hypatia, Zaha Hadid and Amelia Earhart.
It’s tough to find jewelry that can transition—and last—from the beach to the club, but Washed Ashore’s pieces are perfect for just that.
Lara Lamsam founded the brand in 2015, with the hope of translating nature’s pure beauty into “something as sentimental as jewelry,” she said. Because she wanted every piece to have a true connection to the Earth, in 2019 she fully embraced sustainable production, and now, her pieces are made entirely from recycled materials (stones, metals, packaging), which eliminates the need to mine for raw materials.
When Lamsam pictures Mykonos in the summer, she thinks of “the beautiful beaches, amazing Mediterranean cuisine, rich culture, archeological sites and vibrant nightlife.” She said, “It definitely is an ideal summer getaway destination where I would explore and enjoy the history that has a strong influence on my designs and inspiration.”
Washed Ashore’s Asteria pieces were inspired by the constellations and the night sky.
“Humans have always been fascinated by the stars,” the designer said. “We have not only gazed in awe of their beauty, but also looked to them for guidance. Many of our pieces are named after Greek goddesses, including this one. We are deeply inspired by the notion of the “divine feminine,” which is extremely prevalent in Greek mythology.”
Accoring to Lamsam, the jewelry pieces of the season are delicate anklets, gold hoops and any designs with pearls.
Yasmine Jean, a personal shopper and lifelong girls’ girl, founded Zoulette in April 2020 with the hope of empowering women with her jewelry.
The vibe is trendy but luxurious and the pieces are inspired by Jean’s Haitian-French culture—specifically the art of Benin.
When Jean thinks of a Mykonos summer, she thinks of “amazing Mediterranean cuisine, vibrant nightlife, luxurious hotels, beautiful waterfront views, gorgeous architecture and a unique shopping experience.”
Her statement necklaces can elevate any evening outfit, and add some sparkle to the most simple beach look.
Friends Hannah Todd and Ainsley Rose came up with the idea for Londre in 2017 when they were sipping margaritas in Mexico and realized they needed to create swimwear that was sustainable, size inclusive and stylish.
Their newest swims are made from recycled plastic bottles, and inspired by the playfulness the founders believe their customers have been craving this year.
“The world is ready to re-experience summer in all its beachy, sun-drenched, vacation glory and our suits were designed to go along for the (soon to be global) ride,” Todd and Rose said. “With a nod to the fashion from ‘Bridgerton,’ our 1813 Puff Sleeve Top is minimalist while making a statement and can be worn equally with a skirt to happy hour as it can to your poolside dip. Our Ruffle Shoulder One Piece has become a new staple that is versatile yet functional and our Minimalist is the true classic that is the ideal core piece for any summer wardrobe.”
Todd said that when she thinks about Mykonos in the summer, she can taste the “vivid notes of Aperol spritz on my lips and can almost feel the cool sea air mixed with salty hints of saganaki cheese. All of these senses come even further to life when experienced poolside with an expansive view, while in a crisp white Londre suit.”
The brand’s banded scrunch bottoms—light enough for the August heat—and puff shoulder tops are ideal for a classy poolside look.
Designer Clara Lago founded beachwear brand Pitusa in 2011 with a goal to create comfortable, joyful and feminine beachwear.
Recently, enchanted by the “white and blue simplicity, partying, clear crisp waters and delicious food” of Greece, she opened a boutique in Mykonos.
One of Pitusa’s bestsellers is the mini pom pom dress, which pays homage to the vibrant culture of Peru.
Lago said what customers are craving more than ever this summer are crochet dresses—which, luckily, can easily be styled from summer to fall.
Musier Paris founder Anne Laure Mais is no stranger to the sophisticated and trendy style of Mykonos. When she thinks about dressing for a hot holiday on the island, she pictures “white and blue, oversized shirts and long white dresses.”
The white Drew top, which has dainty, faux pearl straps, was inspired by shellfish. And the simple but elegant white Medusa top—also a must-have—was inspired by a chessboard, which Mais said she wanted to make more sculptural, so she made it monochrome.
Mais’ aesthetic is “timeless but with a twist,” she said, and her biggest style icons are models from the 1990s.
When fashion influencer and model Caroline Receveur thinks of a Mykonos summer, she craves “sun tanning on Paradise Beach, sunset cocktails at Scorpios and staying out all night.”
The RECC Paris founder said that for her beachy dresses and sets, she takes inspiration from everything around her, but is constantly “dreaming of the perfect vacation outfit that RECC babes will always want to wear.”
This summer, what her customers have wanted most, she said, are multicolor knitted dresses inspired by Missoni, printed beach sets and anything in pink terry cloth.
“RECC is feminine, flirty and free-spirited but made with the working girl in mind,” she said.
Nothing screams Mykonos chic more than Parisienne et Alors’ Tronchet dress.
Founder Laury Thilleman said the piece was inspired by “Mediterranean vibes, Saint Paul de Vence, Santorini, Mykonos and Capri.”
When she thinks of a Greek summer, she pictures “sailing on the sea around the islands while looking forward to a sunset drink in the streets of Mykonos.”
Her vacation muse is the very sophisticated and naturally beautiful Natalie Portman, and when asked what she considers to be her brand aesthetic, she said: “Alemagou beach with its bohemian settings.”
This summer, what her customers have been loving most are crochet kimonos, tie dye beach dresses and baseball caps.
If European holiday glamour is the goal, Cath Paname always delivers. Founder Catherine Poulain described her brand’s aesthetic as “vintage with a touch of rock ‘n’ roll for wild and free women.” But many of her pieces also seem to have some luxurious, beachy influences.
A Mykonos summer to her means “white houses, beach parties, light blue seas, hot wind and a lot of fun.”
Her white Mercury pants and matching Brigid blouse, she said, were inspired by the gorgeous ancient Greek goddesses—and they couldn’t fit in better with the clean, fresh Mykonos town landscape.
As for her vacation muse, Poulain said it’s definitely “Brigitte Bardot in Saint Tropez.” And who could argue with that?
Nocturne’s elegant designs are inspired by “happy, confident women,” the team said. Each look is comfortable, practical and made to go from brunch to dinner.
The team said what when Mykonos comes to mind, they think of the sun, the sea, the sand and a lot of blue glitter!
Though not blue, their white balloon sleeve crop top perfectly reflects the casual but stylish glitz of Mykonos nightlife.
What the Nocturne woman is craving this year, the team said, is “a combination of independent, stylish and sustainable pieces that stand out.”
Manuela Pungan, the boss woman who launched MANURÍ in 2020, while she was still a fashion director at Cosmopolitan Romania, said the brand’s bestselling Isla dress was made for the woman who wants to dance all night. Like every dress in her main collections, it is meant to be cool, sexy and incredibly comfortable.
“I try to design items that can be worn as well on a summer holiday in Greece as on a beautiful evening spent in Bucharest or any other city,” she said. For her, a Mykonos summer means “dancing nights, freedom, sunsets, youth no matter the age, good cocktails and nice music.”
Pungan’s vacation muse is Romy Schneider in “La Piscine”—just her whole attitude. She’s also obsessed with the super cool Bella Hadid and with style icons Anita Pallenberg and Bianca Jagger.
It all started when, in high school, Elena Bonvicini would take pre-owned men’s jeans, turn them into shorts and sell them to her friends in the locker room. Years later, here she is, doing pretty much the same thing, but in the most chic way.
Bonvicini founded EB Denim in 2017, and her ultra flattering upcycled jeans have since been spotted on celebrities including Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner, Hailey Bieber, Bella Hadid, Megan Fox and Kylie Jenner.
Soon, she will be launching a fully sustainable collection.
Bonvicini’s tri-patch pants were inspired by the color range and functionality of the vintage denim the brand uses. “I wanted to artistically incorporate as many shades and pieces as I could,” she said.
And the brand’s new white chain pants—which have rich Mykonos vibes—were inspired by the ultimate cool girl. “I was going for white Dickies meets sexy meets edgy,” Bonvicini said.
Bonvicini’s vacation muse is Rihanna, because of how she mixes vibrant prints, oversized unisex tops and little denim shorts.
When the designer thinks of a Mykonos summer, she thinks of pure joy and lots of sunshine.
Lisseth Figueroa, born in Lima, Peru, launched her cool, sustainable swimwear brand, San Lorenzo Bikinis, in 2006, while living in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Deeply inspired by nature, Figueroa’s prints are bright, bold and colorful, and her bikini styles fun and sexy. Plus, all her fabrics are biodegradable.
When Stephanie Bednarek, the brand’s director of marketing, thinks of a summer day on the beaches of Mykonos, she pictures “long, sun-drenched days, love, deep sunsets and ocean blues as far as the eye can see.”
The summer is almost over, but Bednarek said San Lorenzo Bikinis’ customers are still craving eye-catching teeny bikinis “with eco-conscious fashion at heart.”
Rachael Sirigotis founded Meraeke earlier this year to finally give women what they’ve been craving from their swimwear: flattering silhouettes, comfortable fits and sustainable materials.
For her, a Mykonos summer is inspiring because it is “effortlessly elegant and exciting.” She said. “The warmth, hospitality and vibrancy of Greek culture is infectious and is felt throughout the island. From the breathtaking landscape to the Mediterranean cuisine, and vivid night life, Mykonos posses all the components of the perfect destination to fulfill every summer desire.”
Meraeke’s Yossra bikini is inspired by the woman who values versatility and creativity—but also doesn’t want to overpack. Sirigotis, a born traveler, came up with the design precisely because it can be styled in over 10 different ways; therefore, you can basically get away with packing just one bikini for your entire vacation!
Sirigotis said her vacation muse is fashion influencer and entrepreneur Valentina Muntoni. “Her effortlessly bold style is curated to perfection wherever she goes,” the designer said.
This summer and beyond, Sirigotis said the Meraeke customer is craving sustainably made swims that she can wear while lounging or jet skiing, and “from the beaches of Mykonos to a boat party in Miami.”