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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Seaside Fashion - Towels for the Beach

Today we look a beach towels from 1956.

In addition to seaweed and sun soakers, next summers shores will be strewn with oversized towels with far fetched designs. Printed with everything from mummies to mermaids, the towels offer the sunbather a gaudy background and a good excuse for starting up conversations in the sand.

Turkish toweling, a two faced cotton fabric that is woven with loops on both sides, got it's start and it's name over a century ago when it was worn in that country for clothing. It has been used by American designers for occasional robes and beach dresses in solid colors but this seasons newest styles are being made in widely patterned stripes and checks to be worn with the new plain black swimsuits. Most of the towels measure 36" x 72".

Beach Middy - made of heavy striped toweling with loose turtleneck (Betty Metcalf $30) is worn with straw hat with band of flowers.

Imitation Burnoose, made of striped cotton lined with toweling (Helena Rubenstein $70.) can also be spread out on sand as a beach towel.

A Seaside Serape consists of a giant checkerboard pattern which is wrapped around the wearer and secured with straw beach hat.

Strapless dress made of boldly striped terrycloth and cinched with elastic belt (Mary Blair $18.) is worn with standard towel twisted around head.

Identical stripes which appear on cotton bathing suit (Cabana $18) and fringed towel (Wamsutta $10) match up swimmer to her spot in the sun.

So how about you, how do you re-purpose or use your beach towel?


Anonymous said...

These are great! I need a mermaid towel.

I can remember that in the early 60s it was a bit of a fad to make a simple pool cover-up using 2 matching towels.

wundermary said...

These designs must have been around for awhile. In 1967 or '68, my grandmother gave my brothers and I beach towels. Two of my brothers got that Jack design. How great to see it, again!

Unknown said...

I particularly like the Mummy towel. It's lovely to think of warmer days ahead. Have a great Christmas .x