Summer is not that far away and smart girls are already planning their holidays. And what is one of the most important items for the summer vacation, apart from the sunscreen? You guessed it, swimwear.
Key Leaf swimwear was started by two Colombian-Italian sisters, (sounds glamorous already, doesn’t it ?) Adriana and Claudia Chaparro Pignalosa, and their first collection was launched in 2007, followed by Floating Leaves collection in 2008, Solar Keys collection in 2009 and their current one is called Ornithology 2010.
Adriana has the architectural design background, having also worked as PR for Chopard and Claudia, who studied at Central St. Martins, worked for Louis Vuitton and Alexander McQueen. They enjoyed their jobs but felt that they wanted to do something else, using their own creativity. Adriana was drawing from the early age and when she saw that Claudia did some prints during her studies, the seed was planted and the end result was the creation of Key Leaf.
I came across their bikinis last year and I can honestly say that theirs are the cutest & most vivid that I have ever seen.
Key Leaf produces one collection a year and even though the general theme of things is inspired by natural beauty of seashore, the 2010 Ornithology collectionis inspired by birds (puffins, peacocks, parakeets, spatulatails) and their beauty in being in tune with nature and freedom.
Each collection’s prints are hand-painted and are never repeated afterwards, giving you the luxury of individuality and uniqueness. Girls only use high-tech Italian fabrics which are of highest quality and are fashioned in Mauritius. When your swimwear is of high quality, you will wear the designs that you love and that suit you for years to come, building them into your favourite vacations, thus fashioning your life story.And they pay attention to the smallest detail, making even block colours look interesting and the fit comfortable but sexy.
But wait, there is more. Claudia & Adriana are not just creative, they are very smart too. When you are on a holiday, you have your swimwear, what else does a woman want? A dress or a blouse to match-a tall order? Not according to Key Leaf ! They do the prettiest, colourful, vibrant dresses and blouses that you can wear not only to the beach but to the party or while out and about with shorts or jeans. And if you have a daughter, you can even have ‘a mother and daughter’ matching bikinis/dress combination.
Until recently you could purchase Key Leaf from Augustina boutique in Belgravia or Heidi Klein boutiques in London but Claudia & Adriana recently opened a cute showroom in Notting Hillwhere you can browse their gloriously colourful collection, try things on and if you are lucky, have some delicious herbal tea and cake baked by Adriana (oh yes, I was that lucky!). Claudia & Adriana, who are very in tune with each other and can finish each other’s trail of thought, also showed me how one can wear the blousons (yes, there are different ways, and Latin American women know the secrets to being sexy) and were honest about what suited me and what didn’t.
I can’t wait for the warmer weather, so I can start wearing my new additions to the wardrobe. And I can see Key Leaf going from strength to strength, because its run and designed by two formidable, smart, pretty women who balance family and career and make it look effortless and us sexy.