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Vintage Bathing Suits


I have always considered myself to have been born in the wrong era. One thing I envy of past decades is the modest yet form fitting bathing suits from the 40's, 50's, and 60's. The classic hourglass figure does not look sickly like many models of today. Also, the covered up approach portrays more class and a more lady-like persona than the tiny, almost bare all swimsuits of today. That's why I was thrilled when I started to see some of the silhouettes of yesteryear coming back in the form of classic shapes and designs of swimwear. Take a look at some of these beautifully clad ladies from the past and compare them to some suits you can actually find today.

Marilyn Monroe


Elizabeth Taylor




Modern Swimwear


Vintage Bathing Suits Poll


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Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on April 30, 2015:

blondey: Thanks! I love this style, too. :)

Theophanes: Thanks for sharing your opinion! I'm not a big fan of bikinis either.

Theophanes Avery from New England on April 30, 2015:

Saw a bathing suit for sale the other day that looked like a "mankini" for female form. Hot pink no less. I couldn't help but wonder, "How would that look flattering on ANYONE?!"

Big fan of the one pieceys. I think anything less than that and it might as well just be underwear... but God forbid you wear actual underwear! Our society has such odd rules. Loved some of these designs. Thanks for sharing!

Blondey on April 29, 2015:

Nice bathing suits! I like the vintage style and I like a bit of modesty too :D

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on February 22, 2014:

poetryman6969: Very true!

poetryman6969 on February 22, 2014:

Elizabeth Taylor looked good in anything.

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on January 22, 2014:

IntimatEvolution: Thanks so much! I had fun writing it.

Julie Grimes from Columbia, MO USA on January 22, 2014:

Fun hub!

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on April 15, 2012:

ChristyWrites: I love them, too. Only a few have returned, but it's not always easy to find them in stores. Thanks for reading!

Christy Birmingham from British Columbia, Canada on April 15, 2012:

What great pieces here, I hope the styles come back as they were cute.

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on April 15, 2012:

Sunshine625: That bathingsuit is cute! I wouldn't mind having it either. Thank you! :)

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on April 15, 2012:

I'd like to have the white swimwsuit with the polka dots in the first picture! It's adorable!! Fabulous hub! Loved the celebrity photos!:)

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on August 24, 2011:

I'm not sure we'd see everyone wear this type of swimwear, but it's on-trend for some today. Actually, Taylor Swift likes to wear vintage-style bathingsuits. Thanks for voting and for your lovely compliments!

princesswithapen on August 24, 2011:

Erin the vintage swimsuits are beautiful! I wonder if they are going to be back in vogue sometime, like all the other fashion trends. It'd be awesome to walk onto a beach and see everyone in swimsuits styled to the 60s! I guess we all need a time machine!

Nice hub and deserves top feedback as always.


Jennifer Kessner from Pennsylvania on August 06, 2011:

I couldn't have put that better. =) Thanks for understanding! And double thanks for taking my comment well. Keep putting out the hubs; I always read yours.

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on August 06, 2011:

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Meisjunk! I certainly didn't want to portray anything that I said in this article as fact. I was basically sharing why I liked these types of bathingsuits. I'm an unusual type of women that likes being covered up, but I don't judge others if they want to wear a certain style. I don't believe that any type of woman's body is ideal; I like that we all get to be different. I think that all women are beautiful! I believe that almost every woman on the planet is insecure about themselves in one way or another. Personally, I wish I had more weight on me and had more hips instead of my boyish figure. My dad and mom are both petite so it's pretty much hereditary. I'm working on loving what God gave me; I guess that's all we can do day by day as women. The older we get, the more we learn to love and accept ourselves by ignoring the media and our culture and instead looking inside our hearts to find beauty: our personality, our loving heart, and our dreams.

Jennifer Kessner from Pennsylvania on August 06, 2011:

I'm usually not good at discussing feminism and tend to say the wrong things. It just makes people mad and puts some on the defensive, but I feel I need to say something. So here goes.

I disagree with the ideal of what "lady-like" means as portrayed in this article. Stick thin sometimes has to do with metabolism, not with how little or how much a person eats. Class isn't defined by body shape either. Modesty is a term that changes and is continually redefined and was probably only created in the first place to shame people and make them uncomfortable with themselves.

I like this style because I like this style. It has nothing to do with a 60-year-old misogynistic view of women being in their proper place and wearing proper clothes and being proper women, and it has nothing to do with not liking bikinis (which I adore) or other types of swimwear.

How much or little a person wants to cover is preference, not lack of morals, and while I am uncomfortable with my body, I feel remorse that I have to be that self-conscious about myself. I am working on it and hope to one day feel good about myself in a swimsuit, be it a one piece, a two piece that covers more than usual, or a bikini.

That's my piece. I hope I've said it in a way to not offend anyone, and I hope that it will get everyone to think about how they view themselves and other women.

Danielle on February 02, 2011:

Here are some

Old fashioned swimwear/a> from retroswimwear.com. Very cute indeed!

molly on August 17, 2010:

My Sister Pat ( Australiam designer label) creates really authentic 50's bathing suits. amazing and beautiful and soooooo comfortable

Jamie Swimwear Australia on August 09, 2010:

I still believed that vintage clothes may it be swimwear or dresses, everything was inspired by vintage.


Swimwear Australia

girlshapes from girlshapes.com on August 03, 2010:

Oh yummy and delicious.

Maria Cole on July 07, 2010:

Wow have swimsuits changed over the years. These are so classic looking! The tan lines would be horrible though!

Nan Mynatt from Illinois on November 16, 2009:

I like your article and I have written one too for the vacationing women. I especially liked the pictures of Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor. I thought I saw Ava Gardner. Good fashion never goes out of style.

Nan Mynatt from Illinois on November 16, 2009:

Look at some of my articles.

Erin Bower (author) from Georgia on September 30, 2009:

Thank you! I love my retro bathingsuit from delias.com...I wear it all the time...I'm ok with being pale ;D

Wendy Iturrizaga from France on September 30, 2009:

Lovely collection. I like vintage in general but I only wear vintage inspired swimwear for the swimming pool-not only looks great in hourglass figures but it holds everything in place!

For the beach I prefer a small bikini as I like to get a good all over tan.

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