The History of Women's Swimwear

Women's swim suits have always been at the fore front of modern contemporary fashion. In a constant state of metamorphosis as it changes according to the values of passing eras. First introduced more as a cover-up for those daring enough to expose themselves to a quick dip in the water, the bathing suit is now a palette of colors and fabrics for everyone from the competitive swimmer to the consumate sun bather. There has been no end to the changing forms and functions and meanings of the bathing suit. As you look through this collection of historical films from the British Pathé archive it will become clear that never before has so much, been the attention of so many, based on so little material.

Eve In The Swim

Eve In The Swim (1932)

Wonderful film about the change in size of women's swimsuits - they just get smaller and smaller!

Camera Interviews - Mrs Arthur Hamilton The Swimmer

Camera Interviews - Mrs Arthur Hamilton The Swimmer (1922)

Fetching swimsuits are modelled by Mrs Arthur Hamilton who hopes to swim the channel.

The Seaside Eves

The Seaside Eves

Fun at the beach - swimwear is modelled, women fish from a pier, diving and swimming.

A New Bathing Note - For Eve

A New Bathing Note - For Eve (1929)

Novel beach outfit - tabard and skirt are removed to reveal a swimsuit underneath.

Bathing Costumes Issue Title - Very Tasteful Very Neat

Bathing Costumes Issue Title - Very Tasteful Very Neat (1940)

Mannequins model the latest in bathing costumes.

The Great Secret

The Great Secret

Great film illustrating how light a woman's clothes are compared to a man's clothes.

Bathing Costumes

Bathing Costumes (1936)

Nice bathing costumes fashion show.

Bathing Fashions AKA Paris Bathing Fashions

Bathing Fashions AKA Paris Bathing Fashions (1951)

The latest woven latex swimsuits in Paris

Swim Caps

Swim Caps (1957)

Punch hosts swimming caps fashion show. Great show, fantastic designs - wrong audience!

Swimmer

Swimmer (1951)

Footage of new swimsuits fashions being displayed. Portland Street, London.

Beachwear

Beachwear (1953)

Glamorous British models show off the latest in swimsuit fashions at the Astor Club.

American Swim Suit Fashions

American Swim Suit Fashions (1951)

Ladies readjusting dresses for a different style, different style swim suits.

Glamour In The Sun

Glamour In The Sun (1946)

Latest in swimsuit fashions - designed by Martin White.

1965 Swimwear Fashions In America

1965 Swimwear Fashions In America (1964)

Swimwear fashions for women in California using a net type of fabric.

Body Paint

Body Paint (1967)

A girl swims in the Serpentine, then has paint daubed over her flesh by a boy in a floral shirt.