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Beach Girl

Katie Kiechel Beckford found the perfect bathing suit by making one for herself—and now she’s got the hottest bikini line of the summer.

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It takes a very brave designer to model her own bikinis. “It is a bit funny in sales meetings,” Katie Kiechel Beckford admits with a laugh. “Next season, I think we’ll use a model.” Well, maybe not that brave (see her picture in the magazine). And after all, Kiechel Beckford did design the swimsuits with herself in mind. Packing for her honeymoon in Jamaica last year, the 31-year-old former stylist couldn’t find the perfect bikini (a feeling many of us contemplating August vacations are familiar with) and instead fashioned her own. It was such a hit on the Caribbean shores that she and her husband, Malcolm, decided to go into the bikini business. Their Erról line, which launched this summer, has been flying off the racks at Language and onto fabulous butts everywhere. The look takes inspiration from Helmut Newton and the many girlfriends of James Bond: low-riding with not a frill in sight. “It’s very va-va-va-voom—taking fashion to the beach,” says Kiechel Beckford. “Which is tricky, because it really has to be flattering.” As she herself knows only too well.


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