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Saturday, July 6, 2013

Vintage Bathing Suit

My husband's gran wore this vintage swimsuit down the shore, probably in her teens. I bet it was  stylish back in the day.

The suit is actually two pieces. A romper style body suit that comes down to the knee, and a full cut sleeveless blouse with a belt, that goes over top. The belt, which adds a little shape to the waist, has Katharine's personal name tag. She might have worn a black bonnet style bathing cap with it too.
Beach wear ca. 1900
belonging to
Katharine L Kurtz
My husband's family saved this and the matching men's suit, and have worn both as a Halloween costumes over the years. The men's is a one piece, tank top style, wool suit. Each of the suits has a tag number sewn into the collar. Maybe it matched a number on a shore side dressing booth?
There are full length, black, stockings that are worn with this outfit too! One of the five pairs has been hand mended many times, and it also has Katharine's name tag. 
 I found a similar swim suit in the Metropolitan Museum collection.
Bathing suit, ca. 1900, Metropolitan Museum Collection
This treasure belongs on display at our local museum!
vintage swim wear Sew Sweet Vintage
Come join the party!
Photobucket/

59 comments:

  1. How fun and stylish :) Thanks for sharing with us and have a great week!

    Hugs!

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    1. Awe, thanks! I left my dress form in the dinning room after taking the photos, and when i walk past that room i get the feeling there's a vintage lady in there, lol!

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  2. The suit is great your lucky to have such a great piece of fashion history.
    Denise

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    1. Thanks Denise! Gotta contact someone about displaying it!

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  3. That really belongs in a, museum! Thanks for sharing.

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    1. A gal who sells vintage suits talked to my husband and I about selling it:( But, no way. It's crazy amazing!!!! Thanks for visiting!

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  4. Stockings!? You gotta be kidding me! Glad you dropped by Joy's Jots, Shots & Whatnots so that I was alerted to come over here and find out folks used to wear stockings with their swim suits. Wow! Thanks for JOYing up too. I appreciate that. Hope I don't let you down. You've got an awesome site here as well and worth following.

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  5. That is so cool!! I love vintage things, especially family pieces. ;)

    Rachel @ Maison de Pax

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  6. Replies
    1. Awe, thankyou and thanks for popping over:)

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  7. Your blog is very interesting! I follow you!
    Have a great day!
    Hugs!!!

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    1. Thanks Milena. Your first name is sweet!

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  8. Oh, wow! What wonderful suits! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

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  9. Oh my goodness....ADORABLE! Love it...I have never really seen one like this in "real life" or in the blog world. What an awesome piece of history. It looks so much better than in the black and white type photos. I have pics of my Great Grandmother and her friends at the NJ shore...this gives me an idea to do a post about them sometime.

    Thanks so much for stopping by....I love vintage SEW I will have to follow you!

    Jillian

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    1. Thanks Jillian. That would be a cool post. Hope to see it!

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  10. Oh love this vintage swim wear. How cute is this post. Thanks for finding me now I have found you. Thanks for your sweet comments on my blog too.
    Kris

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  11. How interesting! and so much fun to wear this at the beach ! patsy

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    1. A friend suggested to have my 25 year old daughter wear it at the shore and take photos! Hope we can do that this summer!

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  12. It might be a bit heavy and warm but oh! would it ever cover up the jiggly bits!! LOL And how fortunate to own this jewel! Complete with name tag. Gets you conjuring up all kinds of stories behind the name, doesn't it? Thanks for sharing this gem!

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    1. Really, no worries about your figure with this one! But I think it's size 2! Thanks for stopping over:)

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  13. That is so cool! Not only a piece of history, but it is really neat that it has been saved by the family over the years. I have a couple of things that belonged to my great-grandmother, that I plan to save for my children.

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    1. That's so cool! I wish I's saved more from my gran and great aunts! My daughter loves vintage dresses from the 50's and 60's! Thank you for stopping by!

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  14. What a treasure! Imagine a swimsuit made from wool. I've been fantasizing about making a vintage swimsuit, but I don't think I'd go back this far unless it were for a Halloween costume, as your family has done with the pair (how cool, a matching pair).

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    1. Thanks for visiting:) I've thought about making a suit too. Maybe a style from the 60's!

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  15. So fun and adorable! Although I wouldn't want to wear it in the water...a bit heavy when wet.

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    1. Really, two layers, a belt, hat and stockings! A wonder they could swim!

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  16. Super cute! I love vintage things!

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  17. This is charming! Love it...I would enjoy wearing it, sans tights, if it were made of cotton. Seriously, all that bare skin revealed today doesn't flatter most people and increases UVA/UVB risk. Too bad we have become a culture of 'less is more' and so many times have little appreciation for using our imagination, like the old B&W movies did with their love scenes. I'm not prudish, just think there is something alluring about NOT letting it all hang out. haha! :)
    This is a family treasure~

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    1. I like to wear a modest bikini/two piece suit and wore a tankini recently, and my husband said, "is that a bathing suit?" Men!

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  18. How great that these have stayed in the family!! :)
    Susan

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    1. Wonder if our swim suits will ever be considered vintage?

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  19. Thanks for visiting my blog! Followed you back! That is an awesome swimsuit!!

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  20. Michele,
    the suits are fabulous! You're so lucky to have them! Can't imagine wearing them in the heat! Thanks for stopping by!
    Rebecca

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    1. Thanks! Can't imagine romping around in one wet either. They must have changed right after getting wet?

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  21. Wow, I cannot believe the family saved both of these precious pieces. Thanks for a visit to my place and a sweet comment too.

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    1. I'm not the best saver, but things like this make me realize I should be!

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  22. Thank you for taking the time to stop and visit me. As much as I love vintage items I never stopped to think about vintage swim wear. I enjoyed viewing these precious pieces once owned by your grandmother.

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    1. Thanks Donna! It's fun to talk vintage:)

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  23. How precious that your family has kept these swimsuits. Memories aside, can you imagine swimming in a wool bathing suit?! Thanks for sharing at Inspire Us Thursday.

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    1. Yuck, the men still wore the wool at this time! The women's I have is at least cotton and silk:) Thank you for your sweet comments!

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  24. That would be so much fun to wear to the beach, I know I'm crazy! LOL

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    1. I'm hoping my daughter will. It's so tiny, I can't get it past my knees:)

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  25. That is fabulous!!! Thanks so much for sharing it at Knick of Time Tuesday - I'll be featuring you tonight at the party and hope you'll also come link up at the Christmas in July party going on now (past and current projects as welcome).
    Anagie @ Knick of Time

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    1. Awe, I wonder what Katharine would think of her suit being admired! Thanks so much. Yes, I'd planned on joining your Christmas party! I even added some Christmas items to my Etsy shop!

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  26. This really is a treasure! Amazing that they hung on to it. Love, love it! Thanks for sharing it with SYC.
    hugs,
    Jann

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  27. That's so great! You're right, id does belong in a museum!
    Gina

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  28. Love it, so neat! I'd love it if you shared this on Worthwhile Wednesdays! http://www.craftyallieblog.com/

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  29. It's so fun to see how fashion has changed over the decades! Thank you for sharing at Merry Monday!

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