Miami Has Solidified Itself as the New Fashion Capital

From top-tier runway shows to unapologetically sexy street style, there's a definitive look in MIA, and everyone wants in.

Miami Fashion
Photo: Getty Images

It's hard not to notice that Miami has become even more of a hotspot over the past few years. A new creative class has moved or sprouted there since remote work made anywhere possible, and it's long been a preferred bachelorette or girls' trip destination.

Somewhere on the list of things to love (aside from, you know, the weather, the beaches, and the fact that it's positively crawling with hot people) is the fashion. "What to Wear in Miami" continues to be a popular search term on Google, while well-known brands consider Miami to be a prime location for hosting events and fashion shows.

"We read it constantly in headlines from all sorts of publications — Miami is the sexiest city in the U.S., and some of these publications even position it to be the sexiest in the world," Miami Fashion Week's Creative Director, Lourdes Fernandez-Velasco, tells InStyle over email. "Miami is the epicenter of many things right now, and it has proven to keep up with some of the biggest events in the globe. There are sporting [events] like tennis and now, recently, Formula 1. There's Ultra music festival, there's Art Basel. How is there not going to be fashion?"

Miami Fashion
Models walk the runway at the Naeem Khan Show during Miami Fashion Week 2022. Getty Images

Fernandez-Velasco says Miami is a melting pot, and when it comes to fashion, it's truly "the best place to be."

"Miami Fashion Week is the perfect way for designers and brands to hit three markets in one shot: the U.S., Europe and Latin America," she tells us. "Its geographic location is unbeatable."

Brands seem to agree, and flock to the famous city. In June 2022, Missoni and Naeem Khan both showed collections during Miami Fashion Week, while even more popular labels, like Poster Girl and Riot Swim, signed on for Miami Swim Week in mid-July. Back in 2021, Chanel opted to host an elegant, celeb-filled dinner in Miami's Design District, an area that also houses a variety of luxury stores, from Dior to Versace.

Miami Fashion
A model at the Missoni Show & Cocktail Hour during Miami Fashion Week 2022. Getty Images

Still, shopping, runway shows, and designer dinners are just part of the equation. In order for a city to solidify its spot as a Fashion Capital, there must be a distinct sense of style associated with it — something that TV personality, empowerment expert, and founder of Good Girl Mafia, Diana Perkovic, says Miami definitely has.

"I could compose an ode to the women of Miami, whose style I would describe as 'unapologetically and effortlessly sexy,'" she tells InStyle, adding that she moved to the city from LA back in 2020. "That level of confidence is so beautiful because it isn't something you just see, it's also something you experience, and it's inspiring. The style in Miami is unapologetically and effortlessly sexy, in the same way I found the style in LA to be unapologetically and effortlessly casual."

Author Ashley Carr-Micic admits that the Miami way of dressing — showing more skin, as well as embracing bright colors and prints — has also rubbed off on her since moving there from New York City.

"First of all, I've never seen my own belly button so many times in one week before I moved to Miami, thanks to my constant rotation of crop tops," she jokes when describing her style transformation. "In NYC, I loved wearing black on black, and my wardrobe was 95% black blouses. But after the first couple of months in 90-degree temperatures and a sun stronger than I was used to, I realized my Donnie Darko fashion sense was going to have to change and I stopped buying black. Ok, almost stopped..."

Miami Fashion
Street style in Miami. Getty Images

Perkovic adds that seeing locals decked out their most impressive outfits made her feel ready to dress up all the time, too, and rethink her personal style.

"I find I take more risks, show more skin, and wear more color than ever before. It feels like my two professional worlds have collided in Miami, covering fashion on TV and now as an empowerment expert."

As for what to wear the next time you're in Miami? Both women believe bolder is better — heels and statement dresses for dinner, matching sets for the gym, and the cutest string bikinis you can find for the beach.

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