1940s | Swimwear / Sunwear

1947 Swimwear

January 23, 2012

To follow on from the Timeline of Vintage Pattern Illustrations post, I thought I might just post my recently completed 1947 Bathing Suit (what a coincidence!)

It was a really easy pattern (although the bias frill on the apron front took up a bit of fabric).

Has anyone else completed any of the patterns on the timeline that they can post? I think that would be a fun timeline to see as well!

  1. it’s so cool to see your made up version–it’s cute, like the pattern illustration, but not so twee as to be unlikable. i bet katherine sees this one disappearing from her etsy store shortly!

    i’ve made mccall 8332, which katherine had pegged for 1966. it’s a copy of a dress oleg cassini made for jackie kennedy. and i LOVE IT.

  2. Thanks to all!
    The fabric suggestions are Sharkskin, spun rayon, pique, seersucker, chambray, gingham, cotton broadcloth and novelty cotton. One pattern piece actually had a piece of the first seamstress’s fabric pinned to it: a moss green toile de jouy with a really shiny coating to it – perhaps this is Sharkskin? I just used a firm cotton broadcloth: yellow with the black check print. It was for my 14 year old daughter, so the aim was for cute and not so twee!
    Thanks for the link, Puu! That 1966 is a beauty!

  3. Sharkskin is a light, soft suiting-type fabric woven in a basketweave pattern. The thread colors are different in the warp and weft, which gives it the same optical-illusion effect of shot silk (also known as changeable silk), where the colors change as you move. Traditionally sharkskin was made of worsted wool, although rayon quickly became popular. (I’d never personally make a swimsuit from rayon, though, as it often shrinks or distorts in water!)

    Your toile sounds like a chintz or polished cotton, but there are other, more durable coatings applied to cottons and this might be one of them.

    1. Thanks for that – I think it may be one of the more durable coatings, not a chintz or polished cotton. I can’t imagine that it would have been very comfortable on a hot day in it.

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