Welcome to Glamoursplash!

A blog with a daily splash of vintage swimwear, vintage fashion, news, designer profiles and all things retro.

We welcome you to shop our on-line boutique Glamoursurf, featuring everything you need from the beach to the bedroom. Glamoursurf specializes in vintage swimwear, vintage lingerie, resort wear, cover ups, swim caps and fun in the sun beach accessories.

Friday, February 27, 2009

1950 - For the Beach Wardrobe

We conclude our 1950 For the Beach series today with a look at the Striped Shell, the Buttoned Maillot, The Nylon Tube and the Beach Stole Poncho as seen in Vogue 1950.

The Striped Shell


The Striped Shell, the Buttoned Maillot. Two of the ladies in the boat wear bathing suits alike: one navy blue striped with white; the other, vice versa. By Catalina, in Celanese rayon with nylon and Lastex, $10; Saks Fifth.

The Buttoned Maillot

The Buttoned Maillot by Rose Marie Reid, a deep-fold bodice with straps to wear or tuck inside a loosely swathed torso. The closing line; dollar size pearl buttons. In Navy blue elasticized rayon satin, $25; Lord & Taylor.

The Nylon Tube



The Nylon Tube, in blue harlequin print. By Olga, in power net of DuPont nylon with Lastex, $25; Henri Bendel.

Beach Stole Poncho


Beach Stole Poncho, Bright green terry cloth stole, slit so that you can wear it as a poncho, $12.50; Bonzini.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

1950 - For the Beach Wardrobe continued

We continue in our 1950 Beach Wardrobe series with a looks at the Polka Dot Tube, the Bathing Dress, the White Shell, the Bathing Sheath and the Beach Maillot in Velvet.


The Polka Dot Tube


The Polka Dot Tube, one piece bathing suit, with swathing across the torso, in a color to compliment a tan - bronze, with golden coin dots. A Howard Greer design for Caltex in Hafner rayon satin with Lastex; $23. from Henri Bendel.


The Bathing Dress

The Bathing Dress, the perennial dressmaker, here, strapless, with a narrow latticed front slit, a sash at the back. By Bantner, in navy blue rayon faille with Lanton, $16; Best's.

The White Shell


The White Shell, a lesson in design for action, with elasticized diaphragm and adjustable straps. By Jantzen in white rayon and cotton sharkskin with lastex, $13; Best's.

The Bathing Sheath



The Bathing Sheath, strapless with a molded bodice, smooth skirt across the front. By Mabs of Hollywood, white rayon sharkskin with Lastex, $12; Franklin Simon.

The Beach Maillot - In Velvet



The Beach Maillot - In Velvet, bright blue with a plane of shirring at the front, straps to wear or not. By Cole of California in Crompton silk velvet, with an underlining of cotton jersey, $18; from Altman.


Our 1950 Beach Wardrobe series will conclude tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

1950 - For the Beach Wardrobe

We continue our series today with an overview of swimwear styles from 1950 as seen in Vogue. Today's post features a group of summer ideas from 1950 for a beach wardrobe.


The Short Culotte, The Tube Top



The Short Culotte, The Tube Top. Wrapped from side to side to look like a straight bathing suit, a new culotte, shortest ever, with a pair of t-i-n-y bloomers underneath. In shite Wellingtone Sears 'Topsail' sailcloth. To top it: a white tube of knitted cotton. Both by Carolyn Schnurer, about $18, Henri Bendel; Halle Bros; Jays; I. Magnin. Wool beach shawl, $15. Pan American Shop.

The Maillot Top



The Maillot Top, briefest of beach sweaters, in navy blue knitted cotton, about $5. With it, in praise of neatness, concisely cut white Irish linen shorts, about $10. Both, Bonwit Teller, White capeskin belt by Criterion, at Altman. The sweater shorts are also at I. Magnin.


Beach Transparency


Beach Transparency, navy blue nylon tricot tunic over a strapless nude color bathing suit, rayon and nylon, all elasticized, by SeaMolds, $13. at Arnold Constable.


The Dressmaker Suit



The Dressmaker Suit, the ever princess shape, here, strapless, with a rolled bodice. By Reel-Poise in white Lonsdale pique, $15 ; Lord & Taylor. All the towels are by Martex.


Jackie Kennedy used to wear Reel-Poise suits, I discovered that little fact when I was researching for a vintage piece we have over at Glamoursurf. This strapless suit has an elasticized shirred bottom. Just as cute today as it was in the 1940's & 1950's.

Tomorrow we'll look at a few more styles from 1950.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

1950 - For The Beach

Images and text from Vogue May 1950

This week we explore vintage swimwear fashions from 1950.

The Lace Bathing Suit

Lace on the beach? The answer is news, is "yes"! White cotton lace, lined with fresh green, looking like a flowered print - for sunning, dipping. The opaque underlining, the wide buckled sash, of green Fuller cotton broadcloth. By Carolyn Schnurer, $20, at Best's; Himelhoch's; Hartzfeld's; Frost Bros.

Polka Dot Maillot

All time shape for a neat look, active performance. In navy-blue, now with a spatter of giant white polka dots, double shoestring straps. By Saucony in cotton and wool woven with lastex, $10. The striped terry cloth towel by Martex, $4. Both at Bloomingdale's. Suit, also at Vandervoort's; The Broadway.



Tomorrow we'll feature the Maillot Top, Beach Transparency and the Dressmaker Suit.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Vintage Roadshow - Links of the Week


Couture Allure dresses the Best Actress Oscar nominees in vintage.

Freudian Slips Vintage finds a wonderful vintage Bill Gibb jacket

Glamoursplash spends the week in 1928, with one post devoted to Seaside Chic from Abercrombie & Fitch.

Here's Looking Like You, Kid gives a film and fashion history lesson: Designer & Costumer Go Head To (Edith) Head.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Van Raalte Singlettes circa 1928

I am enamored by this Van Raalte ad from Harpers Bazar 1928. The juxtaposition of dancers and lingerie is just so intriguing. Delicate graceful lines combined with ballerinas clad in nothing but Van Raalte!



Van Raalte started using the Singlettes trademark in 1925 but did not register it until 1930. Singlettes are combination undergarments of knitted silk fabric.



9776 - A lacycloth of glove silk fashions the brassiere and girdle effect; a gossamer "Illusion" pantie gracefully creeps up on each side, partly concealing the girdle. So soft and yet so durable.


9833 - The flexibility of a waist clad in glove silk is essential to feminine grace. Chantilly lace adds daintiness tot he perfectly moulding brassiere of this Singlette.



9857 - for utter grace, the waist and upper hips are held snugly while the natural curves of the bust are skillfully clad in the tailored glove silk brassiere of this Singlette (Trimmed with Brittany lace).



9776 - Magic took a hand in combining fluffiness with strictly tailored lines and giving lasting resistance to a material so dainty as to appear like a soft nothingness. Wearing this Singlette, dancing takes on a new zest.




9859 - Durability and delicate appearance are combined in this Singlette. What greater test of flexibility of motion when wearing this garment that doing a split, what freedom of motion!


Empress Jade has a wonderful blog dedicated to Van Raalte. If you've never worn a piece of Van Raalte, do yourself a favor and try one. I pick them up whenever I find them. The workmanship and craftsmanship of each piece is a dream. We have a few slips by Van Raalte listed now over at Glamoursurf, which reminds me, I really do need to get more of my lingerie stash listed.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Seaside Chic in 1928

Today we offer a couple of more ads from Harper's Bazar June 1928, one from Abercrombie & Fitch and one from Lord & Taylor. Yesterday we showed a couple of spreads from the Well Designed Beach Costume from this same issue.

A bit of background on Abercrombie & Fitch.

Abercrombie & Fitch was established in 1892 by David Abercrombie as Abercrombie Co. Abercrombie was joined by Ezra Fitch in 1900 and the company officially became Abercrombie & Fitch Co. The company began as a supplier of rugged, outdoor gear.

Both David Abercrombie and Ezra Fitch were stubborn, hot-tempered men, and they had vastly different views about the future of their business. Abercrombie was more conservative, content to continue the store as it was, selling professional gear to professional outdoorsmen. Fitch, on the other hand, was more of a visionary. He was positive that the future of the business lay in expansion, selling the outdoors and its delights to more of the general public. Long arguments between the two men ensued. Inevitably, the partnership came to an end, and David Abercrombie resigned in 1907.

The clerks hired at A&F were not professional salesmen, but true rugged outdoorsmen. Talking was their pleasure and selling was performed only at the customers' insistence. By 1913, the store moved to a more fashionable and easily accessible midtown address just off Fifth Avenue, expanding its inventory to include sport clothing. A&F became the first store in New York to supply such clothing to women as well as men.

By 1917, Abercrombie & Fitch moved to Madison Avenue and 45th Street, where it occupied an entire twelve story building. Outside a sign proclaimed "Where the Blazed Trail Crosses the Boulevard." Abercrombie & Fitch had become the largest sporting goods store in the world, as well as the most impressive. A log cabin was built on the roof, which Fitch used as a townhouse.

By 1928, Ezra Fitch retired from the business to enjoy his remaining few years in the great outdoors that he loved so much. Abercrombie & Fitch continued to grow, with stores opening up in Chicago and San Francisco. But by the late '60s the store hit upon hard times and went bankrupt in 1977. Oshman's Sporting Goods, based in Houston, Texas, bought the company. Business wasn't good. The Limited Inc. bought Abercrombie & Fitch in 1988. And today, Abercrombie & Fitch thrives as a publicly held company. A powerful lifestyle brand, business is thriving at Abercrombie & Fitch with hundreds of stores.

This is an ad from Abercrombie & Fitch in Harper's Bazzar of 1928 titled The Call to the Sea.




Fashionable beaches...carefree sportswomen...flashes of color...sparkling water...brilliant sunlight...There is as much personality and individuality to a bathing costume as to any other of the sportswomens clothes...striking designs...unusual color combinations...all contribute to the general effect of smartness which our beach wear invariably creates. The latest and cleverest styles for the new season are here impatiently awaiting the call to the sea.


(Left) Two piece bathing suit, figured silk tunic in combination of violet, gold, black, green and red. Blending, jersey tights, silk trimmed $16.50.

(Left Center) One Piece Wool Swimming Suit: Navy, black, saxe blue, royal green and scarlet, $8.50.

(Right Center) Two piece Wool Swimming Suit, white shirt with colored dots, flannel trunks of solid color to match dots. Colors: White with scarlet, black, navy, jade, and powder blue, $10.50. Flannel cardigan to match suit, $10.50.

(Right) Slip of celanese satin with tie belt. Black, red, green and saxe blue. $10.50. In celanese moire, same colors, $13.50. Ribbed jersey tights to be worn under slips, black and staple colors, $3.50.

Silk moire beach pillow and Bathing Bag combined - black, red, green, blue and purple. $.00
Bathing belts in solid colors or fancy stripes .50 to $3.50. Bathing and diving caps, .75-$2.50.
Bandanas of silk or satin in all colors, $2.50-$4.50.

I love the ad illustrations from this issue. Note how the monogram appears again on the beach blanket.


Yet another swimwear ad from Harper's Bazar 1928 featuring Lord & Taylor.

En Route to Seaside Chic

Beach costumes are especially important this year since the smart world is focusing it's attention on aquatic sports. Lord & Taylor presents the individual sports fashions that appear on private beaches, such as the Jane Regny pyjama ensemble or Chiaparelli's sunburn bathing suit sketched above, as wll as a fascinating variety of bathing costumes and accessories.

Chiaparelli? No that is not a typo on my part. I'm wondering if Lord and Taylor made a mistake and it was to read Schiaparelli?

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The Well Designed Beach Costume of 1928


This short article appeared in Harpers Bazar June 1928

Truly Chic Bathing Ensembles are Never too Elaborate


For the Beach, more than almost any other sports occasion, the costume must be extremely simple and faultless in design. The elaborate beach costume with a hint of the Orient, or worse, the musical revue, always has a slightly comic element about it. The too Chineese pajama, the nautch-girl bathing ensemble, the bathing cape with the dragon rampant sprawled on its full and glamourous length, one sees them and marvels at the bravery of womanhood.


One nice thing about bathing costumes this year is their sailor wool jerseyness, a certain marine touch that is exactly right and has the much-mentioned tang of the sea. The Paris designers snip up bits of wool jersey and sew them together in a mosaic of blending color - blue and darker blue, green and chartreuse green, yellow and orange yellow. Certain houses make the tri-colored suits; they are charming. The brief trunks are beautifully cut with the slight side flare that makes the characteristic 'shorts' line, the bodice is cut with the V or the round neck, according to one's type, or discretion.

Wool jersey has superseded silk jersey, just as the well-designed monogram has taken the place of almost all other ornament. Stripes and degrade colors are used.


One thing permitted us is the gay wrap, simply cut, and designed, perhaps, to match a beach pillow and rug. This is often of heavy linen crash, combined with plain fabric.




A beach-set of heavy linen crash, gaily flowered, consists of coat, pillow and rug. The coat is worn over a Patou pajama of blue flat crepe. From Saks Fifth Avenue.


Pink and dark blue silk crepe is sewn together in a smart design, typical of this briefly cut bathing costume made by Mary Nowitzky this season. Saks Fifth Avenue.


(Upper Middle) Blue pink silk jersey, with bands of darker pink, orange and blue.


(Right) White jersey top, red monogram, blue jersey shorts. Bonwit Teller.





(Beginning lower left) heavy silk crepe, in dark blue for the shorts, is joined to the same fabric in white for the bodice, which is banded with dark blue, and monogrammed red and blue. Saks Fifth Avenue


Beach crepe in black is used for this cleverly cut suit, made with amusing shoulder tabs, over a straight-cut bodice underneath. The edges are all piped with yellow, and the lower edge is curved. Bonwit Teller.


(Upper left) Dark blue wool is used by Patou for this three piece costume, made with shorts fitted into a yoke and a knee length coat. Yellow monograms on sleeves and blouse. Saks Fifth Avenue.


(Upper right) An unusually well cut little bathing suit is of dark blue silk, made with an abbreviated skirt over shorts. It has a small buttoned vest set in. Black monogram. From Saks Fifth Avenue.


(Extreme right) The becoming cape is white and fastens at the throat. Worn over a silk jersey suit with fine lines of black and white, and a green band around the hips. Nat Lewis.


(Right center) A beach costume from Mary Nowitzky with bright green flannel shorts and cardigan, green and white jersey bodice, and matching sash, cap and slippers. From Saks Fifth Avenue.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Vintage Roadshow - Links of the Week



Couture Allure shows how to dress up a vintage suit.

Debutante Clothing is thrilled with her new vintage Roger Van S bag.

Freudian Slips Vintage looks at how to get the look of Anna Friel as Chuck in Pushing Daisies.

The Vintage Traveler talks basketball, clothes, that is.

Glamoursplash pays tribute to Lucille Ball.

Here's Looking Like You, Kid helps you plan a classic Hollywood Oscars party -- complete with vintage party games!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Weekend Sighting - Fleur de Guerre

Glamoursplash happened to run across a wonderful video this weekend and noticed a familiar face amongst all the beautiful models. Fleur de Guerre is an absolute knock-out modeling a fabulous vintage styled swimsuit. We follow her blog Diary of a Vintage Girl daily, and recommend you do too!

On her website she has some fabulous photo shoots in the galleries section. This one photographed by John Evans where she poses in a tribute to Rita Hayworth, and this gorgeous shoot Sun, Sea and Sand by Tobias Key. Another favorite of ours is Summertime Swingin by Chris Dryzmakski.

Miss Club Shipway 2008 Bathing Beauty Parade:





Miss Club Shepway 2008 Bathing Beauty Parade at the Leas Lift, Folkestone, Kent on Sunday 20th July. Celebrating 100 years of Bathing Beauties, and re-living the dream where the first ever British Beauty Parade took place! Video features: Fleur De Guerre, Dangerous Dolly, Miss Golden de Licious, Miss Ivy Paige, Veronika Valentine, Alaska Blue, Debra Dekay, Precious Isis and Unkle Monty. Costumes by Lady Lucie Clothing.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Just in Time for Valentines Day

Who cares if it's Friday the 13th today, I'd rather discuss tomorrow.


Happy Valentines Day! Share it with someone you love.



You know this is Marilyn right?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Styles of Swimwear

By definition, a bathing suit is an abbreviated one or two piece garment worn on the beach or in the water. Taken in general terms, many things can be worn as swimwear, but custom, as well as fashion, has restricted the selection and developed a separate category of swimwear. Items falling under this heading can be varied countlessly - including even the total number of pieces in the garment. Let's look at the different styles of swimwear.


One Piece Suits:

Heading the one-piece line up is the DRESSMAKER suit - so named because of the dressmaker or fancy detailing found in it. Many times these suits have a skirt, or a front skirt panel and princess seaming, but they can have a variety of other construction details as well.

A MAILLOT is more on the no nonsense yet sophisticated side. Popular in the 1930's, it combines body -revealing fit with classically simple style by using stretch fabrics. Another one-piece basic style for stretch fabrics is the functional TANK SUIT. It's design concept is an old one, but clean lines and a sleek look have kept it totally up to date.

Two Piece Suits:

Consisting of a bra and briefs, two-piece swimsuits are swimwear's answer to the separates issue. The CLASSIC TWO PIECE suit teams a modest bra top with to-the-waist briefs. When the briefs are cut a little lower, you have hip-huggers, a sensuous, yet not too daring look. If your idea of fun in the sun is baring as much as possible, a BIKINI will give minimum coverage for both top and bottom.

Variations:

Any of the basic one or two-piece styles can be adapted to satisfy any desires or demands you may have. Starting at the neckline, do you want wide straps crossed in the back, a halter top, tiny straps that tie in place, or even none at all? At the midriff, concentrate on close fit, or be a non conformist with the blouson approach. Draped looks are another great fill in for this area. Lastly, look to hips and legs - tie up the sides or give yourself some extra room with cuffed boy legs. If you'd rather skirt the issue, try pleats, petals, or flounces.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Dare to Bare

Rudi Gernreich created a scandal in 1964 with the introduction of his topless bikini swimsuit called the monokini. He followed up on that in 1974 with the introduction of his thong bikini, called the Tanga, featuring a narrow strap on the rear bottom.




A tanga is an undergarment and swimwear for both sexes which has no material around the sides other than the waist band. A string tanga is a type of tanga swimwear which has the waist band replaced with strings which are tied. The term originated from the Kimbundu term "ntanga", meaning loincloth. Often, the name tanga is used to refer to thongs or g-strings as well.


Sports Illustrated - Christie Brinkley 1975 - Tanga by Giorgio di Sant'Angelo

The thong is first spotted on the beaches of Rio de Janeiro in the early 1970's, which soon spread as a beach fashion among the young and nubile. The tanga never became mainstream in Europe or America, despite the fact that the 70's was about revealing flesh more than anything else on the beach.

Glamoursurf was recently contacted by the Australian National Maritime Museum for their upcoming exhibition called Exposed! the story of swimwear. They are trying to source a Rudi Gernreich Tanga suit. If you have one or know of any available we'd love to hear from you.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Vintage Roadshow - Links of the Week


Here's Looking Like You, Kid has Valentine's Day advice about party frocks and crinolines.

Couture Allure writes a letter to Blumarine about body image in their advertising.

Debutante Clothing channels Joan Holloway in this 1950s cherry bombshell dress.

Freudian Slips Vintage is excited about the return of Pushing Daisies.

Glamoursplash looks at Claire McCardell Sportswear and Swimwear.

Do you have a blog on vintage fashion? Then consider joining us at the Vintage Roadshow!

Monday, February 9, 2009

I Love Lucy

A small tribute to Lucy, she was glamourous in a swimsuit!

Lucille Ball August 6, 1911 - April 26, 1989.

Born Lucille Desiree Ball in Jamestown, New York. In 1926, Lucy enrolled in the John Murray Anderson dramatic school in Manhattan, where Bette Davis was also a pupil, but due to her shyness she was discouraged by her teachers to continue. Lucy plugged away until she landed various chorus girl and modeling jobs. In 1933 managed to become one of the singing and dancing "Goldwyn Girls"for movie producer Samuel Goldwyn.

She married Cuban bandleader Desi Arnaz in 1940, but despite an obvious strong affection for one another, they separated and considered divorce numerous times during the war years. Hoping to keep her household together, Lucy sought out professional work in which she could work with Desi. She was finally offered her own starring TV series in 1950, but refused to do it unless Arnaz would co-star with her.

Television was a godsend for the Arnazs. Desi discovered he had a natural executive ability, and soon he was calling all the shots for what would become "I Love Lucy." From 1951 through 1957, I Love Lucy was the most popular sitcom on television. Lucy was finally, after years of career stops and starts, firmly established as a mega-star in her role of a zany, disaster prone Lucy Ricardo.

Lucille's last television appearance was just weeks before her death. She appeared with Bob Hope, who was in many respect her male counter part in show business. Together they presented a production number featuring rising young talent on the 1989 telecast of the Academy Awards.

This picture of Lucy was taken in 1943 for a film "Best Foot Forward"

In autumn of 2001, Lucille Balls older fans were treated to a glamourous reappraisal in Modern Maturity magazine.




Lucy as a top Hattie Carnegie mannequin in New York, circa 1932, decked out in the designers famous low-hemmed white sharkskin suit.

In her starlet period Lucy was glad for any assignment, no matter how ludicrous. Here she cracks a rhinestone whip as the cats dance in The Zeigfeld Follies (1946).





"The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age."
Lucille Ball

Friday, February 6, 2009

Sometimes it's Hard to Let Go!



This is one of our favorite patterns over at Glamoursurf. You don't see many like this anymore in this condition. We're a bit saddened as it just sold. It's one of those beauties from the 1930's that just evokes a certain sense of beach glamour. The hat, the shoes and the glasses all complete a wonderful ensemble. I'm glad it's going to have a new home, I'm just sorry to see it go.

Vintage 30's Butterick 6586 Women's Beach Outfit Wrap Skirt Halter and Shorts Pattern sz 14 B32 Unprinted. Beach outfit for women and misses including a wrap around skirt, A halter and shorts made in two styles. Pattern is complete and unprinted.



This is another of our swimsuit pattern favorites, but this one just sits at my desk and I look at it everyday. It's one that I just can't bear to part with. The pattern is from Advance from the 1940's. I just love the high empire style waist and the gathering on the sides of the shorts. And a halter to boot!

I'm not sure if it's harder to let go of something you just admire or if it's harder to grieve about the one that got away.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Black and white All Over the Beach

The Newest Bathing Suits have a Neutral Look and a Modest Cut. The year is 1953. The most noticeable bathing suits this summer are not the brightest of scantiest on the beach. Instead they are completely colorless black and white, and most of them cover the wearers more than any new suits in years. They represent a sharp deviation from the pastel satin, pared down hourglass style that came in last summer. Many have high halter neck lines, and most two piece suits have puffy, instead of skin tight pants. The newest and most modest line of all is a modernized version of the 1908 bathing dress, with push up sleeves that reach almost to the elbow. (see Claire McCardells suit below). The new no color scheme will appeal especially to those proud of their tans, for black and white sets off a well tanned skin better than any color does.


Bathhouse Quintet

Left to Right: zip front, saddle stitched Lastex by Jantzen $13.00, two piece polka dot cotton by Brigance $18.00, embroidered cotton halter with Lastex pants by Brigance $23.00. Hanging on the peg is embroidered Lastex by Sea Nymph $15.00.


Strapless cotton tube with embroidery reversed on top by Carolyn Schnurer $23.00, pique dress over ruffled bottom bloomers by Loomtogs $15.00.



Long sleeved suit sports a plunging neckline which will eventually cause an unorthodox suntan. In jersey $23.00, it's top and hook and eye closing copy dress style by Claire McCardell.

Long torso Poncho with bold inch-broad black and white stripes completely covers wearers bathing suit. It is made of sailcloth with a wide deep cuffed neckline by Kenn Barr of Casino $10.95.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Claire McCardell Fashion Timeline and Innovations

Claire McCardell timeline and innovations in her career:
1905: Claire McCardell born in Fredrick, Maryland
1925: Graduates from high school at the age of 16
1925-1928: First attends Hood College in Fredrick, transfers to Parsons School of Design, spends last year at Parson’s Paris branch
1927-1930: Embarks on a succession of frustrating jobs
1929: Hired as assistant to designer to Robert Turk
1931: Becomes assistant to designer Robert Turk for Townley Frocks
1932: Turk dies suddenly in sailing accident, Claire finishes his collection and becomes head designer at Towley
1934: McCardell innovates with mix and match separates
1936: Launches her first swimwear line
1938: First designer success with the “Monastic” dress
1939-1940: Townly folds, McCardell spends brief stint working for Hattie Carnegie
1940: Townly reopens, McCardell brings out her first line with them
1942: Designs “Popover” dress and the Diaper Swimsuit
1943: Marries Texas born Architect Irving Drought Harris, Wins fashion’s Coty award
1944: Ballett slipers adapted as shoes
1952: McCardell becomes partner and vice president of Townly
1955: McCardell uses the designs of artists including Chagall, Leger, Picasso, Miro and Dufy to make cotton resort clothes.
1956: Received the Parsons Medal for Distinguished Achievement for her contributions to design 1958: Claire McCardell dies of cancer at the age of 53


And here we present more of her fabulous swimwear designs.

Claire McCardell swimsuit from the 1940s


1946 Claire McCardell Swimsuits


1946 Claire McCardell Swimsuits


1946 Claire McCardell Swimsuits


1946 Claire McCardell Swimsuit


1946 Clarie McCardell Swimsuit