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Art Basel Miami Beach brings out an electric set of people to Florida’s balmy shores. Art collectors, curators, enthusiasts, party people, and jet setters all flock to Miami, creating a vibrant crowd with as much fashion variety as the art on display. Outfits run from schmooze-ready beach attire to high fashion and everything in between. And in true Miami style, there’s also a fair amount of skin. However, attending Art Basel is a chance to elevate your style beyond the tight dresses of Miami Beach nightlife and the white linen beach looks.
Whether you’re going for the art or the parties—or a little bit of both—you will want to look your best from sunrise until long after sunset. What to pack, then? From designer bags to thong bikinis, here are a few ways to stand out and fit right in with Basel’s well-heeled crowd while accommodating Miami’s December weather this year.
What to wear to the Art Basel Miami Beach art fairs?
Vibe: Funky, Casual Chic, Comfortable
There are no rules about what to wear to the art fairs but think New York edgy meets colorful Miami. With hundreds of galleries showing at Art Basel Miami Beach and satellite fairs, there’s a lot of ground to cover. Art fair looks are where the marriage of style and function is most needed. You want to make sure your outfit and shoes are comfortable so you can still make it out in the evening after a full day of viewing art, but comfort doesn’t have to sacrifice style.
Bright dresses paired with sneakers or booties are always a winner at the art fairs. Breezy fabrics and funky, loose fits are great for Miami’s humid weather. However, don’t forget the fairs temps are kept cool for the art, so a light blazer or fun kimono is a must. Statement jewelry is an excellent addition to any Art Basel look and can help elevate your outfit if color is so-not-your-thing, and you insist on wearing black. The bag of choice for the art fairs is a small to medium-sized tote, so you can easily stash a water bottle, art fair program and swag, and an umbrella for South Beach’s infamous downpours. Check out some Art Basel Miami Beach 2018’s art fair street style here.
What to wear to Art Basel Miami Beach pool parties?
Vibe: Sexy, Glam, Chic
Miami Beach is not the place to be shy, and Art Basel is no exception. There will be a lot of skin, especially at the pool parties, sure to bring out the best DJs and the hottest jet-setter crowd. When considering what to wear to a pool party in Miami, think glam island elegance meets wild all-nighter energy. Bolder is better in Miami. Luckily, there’s no shortage of statement swimwear to choose from, ranging from skin-baring bikinis in geometric prints to a one-piece with ultrahigh cut thighs for a Baywatch-like spin if you dare. A sleek one-piece suit paired with an open kimono, a sunhat, and wedge sandals is a great look that is sexy yet refined. Loose pants or a wrap-around skirt over a bikini with funky jewelry and sandals are pool appropriate but still stylish. For those not wanting to wear a swimsuit, a flirty sundress or co-ords set is the way to go.
Full makeup and hair is not only acceptable but encouraged, and there will be a fair share wearing heels. When it comes to toting around essentials like your ID and a brightly colored lipstick, a mini cross-body bag with dazzling hardware is practical and won’t weigh down your radiant Miami look. Don’t forget sunscreen and sunglasses!
What to wear to Art Basel Miami Beach nightlife?
Vibe: Bold, Sexy, Flashy
Art Basel Miami Beach brings out the best in the already world-famous nightlife in Miami, from secret pop-up nightclubs to A-list VIP fêtes. The lines are long, and the guest lists are tight, so dress to impress. Think flashy, sexy, and bold. Art Basel does bring a bit more sophistication to Miami nightlife, so you want a party ensemble that’s over-the-top yet polished. Metallic, animal print, and neon are all crowd-pleasers. A puffy sleeve or structured shoulder elevates a party dress to Art Basel worthy attire. If you must wear black wear something with a fun silhouette. Don’t be scared to show a little skin, walking the line between refined and racy will undoubtedly turn heads. Heels are a must! Do be mindful, however, that some pop-up clubs are on the beach and can have areas with sand, so a block heel may be preferred.
Temperatures can drop to the 50s in December at night so you can wear a little jacket or a dress in a slightly heavier material, however, expect it to be sweaty in the clubs. A small cross body, shoulder bag, or belt bag is recommended. Don’t bring any larger bags or anything you would need to set down out at night; things have been known to go missing in Miami clubs. Also, make sure your bag closes and stays closed. In tightly packed clubs, phones and wallets are easy to steal out of an open purse. Don’t forget your sunglasses for those early morning treks home. 😉