The inhabitants of Medieval Europe did not disdain to swim in open waters without clothes. The aristocrats believed that such behavior was indecent, and did not go near the water at all. The situation changed in the middle of the 18th century. During this period, resorts and health resorts began to develop actively. Sunbathing is becoming one of the most popular procedures.
Ladies’ swimwear, more like casual wear, was not the most comfortable option for tanning. Girls appeared on the beaches in lush dresses, under which there were stockings and shoes. The images were necessarily complemented by a hat and an umbrella from the sun. Special weights were sewn onto the lower part of the dress, which did not allow the fabric to float above the water. However, the ladies entered the water only knee-deep. Swimming was considered bad manners.
Swimwear fashion changed in the early 19th century. Then special bathing machines became popular. The ladies got to the beaches in covered horse-drawn carriages. Hiding from strangers, women changed into swimsuits, and then splashed in the shallow water outside men’s eyes.
The cut of swimwear changed dramatically when swimming became part of the Olympic Games. The swimmers needed a sports swimsuit that would not hinder movement. For swimmers, tight, one-piece, knee-length swimsuits were sewn. At the beginning of the twentieth century, a women’s swimsuit looked like a blouse with trousers sewn to it, over which a special jersey skirt was worn. This was a big breakthrough, because now women did not need to wear stockings and shoes to swim.
Courageous girls rule fashion
The fashion for swimwear might not have changed if it were not for brave girls who understand how uncomfortable it is to swim with closed clothes. One of them was Annette Kellerman, an Australian swimmer who made her own open swimsuit. The girl was arrested for appearing in public.
Morals softened after the First World War. People needed a distraction from the crisis, and with that fashion helped a lot. The cut and style of the usual outfits began to change. The changes also affected women’s swimwear. Bathing shorts above the knee came into fashion. At the same time, a slimming swimsuit appeared, which favorably emphasized the waist. There were teams of inspectors on the beaches to ensure that swimwear was not too short.
In the middle of the twentieth century, fashion designers took up the creation of swimwear. French and Italian fashion designers created models in bright colors. In 1932, a separate swimsuit called a bikini appeared on the catwalks. They did not immediately become in demand, but the appearance of actresses and models in such clothes helped to raise the demand for the product. The next breakthrough was the appearance on the market of lycra and nylon fabrics.
The impact of the sexual revolution
The sexual revolution that took place in the 60s became the basis for the emergence of explicit models of beachwear. Then topless tanning came into fashion. The girls are no longer ashamed to bare their breasts. Less and less fabric was used for swimwear. Fashion designers have created swimming trunks, which are popularly called “dental floss”, because they did not cover the buttocks. In the 80s, strapless bandeau bodices came into fashion.
In the early 90s, the series “Rescuers Malibu” was released on television. Pamela Anderson in an open red swimsuit has become a sex icon for many years. Every woman dreamed of buying a swimsuit like a TV star. Swimwear with a high cut on the thighs became a hit of the time.
The beginning of the 21st century is characterized by the emergence of tiny swimwear called micro bikinis. They were often seen on celebrities such as Britney Spears and Madona. Designers began to produce models with drawings, lettering, rhinestones and straps.
Perhaps the women’s swimsuit suit can be called one of the most scandalous wardrobe items. Today, you can buy a swimsuit for the pool and the beach in any color and style, but just 100 years ago you could get arrested for appearing in shorts.