A few years ago, I visited the Madonna Inn for the first time. I instantly fell in love with the one of a kind kitschy decor, friendly staff, and the overall MORE IS MORE approach. Hot Pink Floral Carpet? YAS. Glitter wallpaper? Why the heck not! It instantly became my “happy place” and I felt that Phyllis Madonna might be my kindred spirit. People come from all over the world to experience this kooky resort, and I HIGHLY recommend it as a vacation destination. Ever since that first visit, I’ve wanted to do a photo shoot there, but I was sure that it was a pipe dream. Until my best friend Gabrielle said “I think we should try!” So I contacted the Inn, worked a little magic, and today I’m launching maybe the best video I’ve ever made, and certainly one that I am incredibly satisfied with and proud of. I couldn’t have done this without the Madonna Inn staff, especially Holly, and with the help of my best friends Gabrielle and Joel and of course my beloved husband Michael. I had a crazy idea and we made it a reality. I don’t want to over-sell it: we didn’t cure cancer ya’ll, we made a killer swimwear video. But I do want to celebrate when something magical and seemly impossible comes together. Michael and Joel really worked on their video and photography skills and Gabrielle BROUGHT IT with her modeling. No one has sexier RBF. And the setting made it that much richer: I can’t wait to shoot at the Madonna Inn again!
Below are two videos that this incredible group worked on; the first is a lookbook, and the second is a travel vlog. After you’ve watched the videos there is also reviews of each suit I wore with pictures. To read Gabrielle’s reviews please visit her blog when you’re done here. Thank you for being a part of my community and the reason I’m able to have hairbrained dreams and make them real.
First up we have the Brasilia from City Chic! The colors of this suit are gorgeous, and I love that even though Gabbi and I have different body types, it looks amazing on both of us. I’m wearing a CC XL, and Gabbi is wearing a M. This suit can be worn crossed in the front and back (Gabs and I each wore it a different way completely by chance). I love the punchy colors and the silhouette. I’m rocking a pair of heels so that once in my life I’m the same height as Gabrielle… when she’s wearing flats. These Abbey heels are shockingly comfortable- I want them in every color!
Next up I’m rocking the Sahara while Gabrielle is looking dreamy in the Mykonos. These suits are similar at first glance, but the Mykonos features underwire and the laces are adjustable, while the Sahara has fixed laces, cups but no wire, and crosses back strap and rose gold beads on the front straps. Be sure to read Gabrielle’s review on her blog to get her thoughts on the Mykonos.
We loved the way we were able to twin while technically wearing different suits. Unique Vintage has an incredible selection of mix and match swimsuits and we took full advantage of this while styling for this shoot. I love this Ramona top- I can’t wait to rock it not only as a swim top but also as a crop top this summer! The Bottoms are called the Louise, and have buttons at the back, and sadly I didn’t get a great photo of in this set so here’s a shot from another combo. These bottoms come in a bunch of colors and I WANT THEM ALL! The buttons give me all thge feels! Gabrielle’s suit top is called the Mrs West and the Mrs Cooper bottoms have pockets! Unique Vintage runs a bit small, so my pieces are in a 4X.
I love theme dressing, and this is just bananas. When I set out to do this shoot I knew this suit HAD to be shot in the tennis court, but hot damn I had no idea how good this would come together. The Splice Bikini top is a City Chic L and the Splice Bikini bottoms are a XL. In a recent video I explained how the City Chic bikini tops runa bit big so I recommend sizing down. I paired these with some killer rose-gold sandals from City Chic, and I gotta say, they are going to be a staple for me this summer! I am SO IMPRESSED with their shoe offerings, I can’t wait for them to launch more (seriously, more Abbey heels. In dark green velvet and burgundy Suede. Should we collab? Let’s Talk. haha)
MRS Kane & Louise
Sexy Frills and Vintage Thrills
For this set I paired those same Unique Vintage Louise bottoms with the Mrs Kane top in red. I love the ruffle on this- it sort camouflage my tummy area which is nice if you’re self-conscious. I’m not (clearly I’m an exhibitionist) but I still think its really pretty, Gorgeous shade of red and it was fun to flap around with this one. The shoes are from City Chic. The ruffles are just darling.
Without a doubt, the City Chic Black Neon Bikini and the One-piece version are some of my favorites from this season. I have the one-piece suit in a XL and it fits like a dream, so comfy and just a bit sexy without having to be a push-up bra. The fabulous black straw hat is from Unique Vintage– please wear hats the summer! Sunburns are not fun!
This final look is so vintage and fun! On top I have the Unique Vintage Marlene which features underwire for support and a tie back that makes the suit a bit adjustable, and the Georgiana Bottoms are incredibly comfortable and perfect for swimming your heart out!
Thank you to City Chic and Unique Vintage for providing suits for this shoot!