The Whole Maillot

HAPPY B IRTHDAY, ANN!! I hope it’s a fabulous day-week-year colored with spectacular fashion moments!  And on your birthday, I have nothing but great news to share with you:  The Wall Street Journal reported last week that the one-piece bathing suit is back IN!  What other word comes to mind but – WHEW!  I know we’ve all had our turn at the bikini, tankini, monokini and other kinis, but as the years go on — how many sarongs can you employ to make the most of all you have on the beach?  I wear one-to-two at a time and carry others with me.  Seriously.

In a nutshell, with the return to the ultrafeminine look in ready-to-wear collections,  swimwear lines are, well, following suit.  Wall Street Journal writer, Christina Binkley, in her article The Summer of Modesty , tells us that the retro one-piece suits “hark back to the relatively chaste looks of Hollywood’s heyday, with low leg cuts, high-waisted bikini bottoms, shirred and gathered fabric, and tops that offer fuller coverage.”  Binkley gives greater context to this trend in swimwear by suggesting that  “[t]he ultra-femme look is part of a midcentury trend that is sweeping architecture, interior design and even industrial design.”

Floral design suit by Nanette Lepore

Tomas Maier

The look appeals to younger and not as young women who are eschewing the hard body bathing suit launched in the 1980’s and the teeny bikini seen on all beaches everywhere in the last ten years.  I’ve been a fan of the one-piece forever–

and am glad the fashion industry is coming around.

Happy Birthday, Ann!

— Julie

Images courtesy of The Wall Street Journal, Getty images, Tomas Maier, and my personal collection.

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