Retro Revival – How Old Is Your Swimsuit Style? – Zanita Studio
It’s the beginning of June – and that means only one thing for disorganised folk like yours truly; the arrival of this seasonal heat is paired with a frantic realisation that I haven’t planned a single aspect of my summer vacation! Urgent meetings with the boyfriend, hours scrolling through Airbnb’s and comparing flights would be the immediate and correct reaction. Unfortunately, my focus is keenly directed towards what sun-visor I will be donning in this yet-to-be-confirmed, mystery location. My ‘failure to launch’ is characterised by more hours than I care to admit, dutifully procrastinating through filling up my virtual shopping cart at the fine digital establishments of Moda Operandi and Revolve with my dream poolside attire – or will it be the beach?! Sigh, a true story of pining for that unrequited summer love.
As I sift through my dreamy, curated carts, I begin to notice some common themes. Each swimsuit sparks images of decades gone by – updated of course, sleeker – with more flattering lines and tech savvy materials. Yet – it’s easy to see how most of today’s swimwear is still so heavily influenced by the silhouettes and styles of the past.
Never mind booking the holiday; the most important decision to be made this summer is whether I want to be decked out (beach pun very much intended) in either Talented Mr Ripley Pastels or a 70’s Farrah Fawcett one piece.
I have narrowed down my favourites below – and of course, where you can also get your hands on these show stopping summer costumes.
My digital shopping cart is stacked full of 1950’s style high waisted bikinis. I’m Sophia Loren – with my coiffed lemon drenched hair (I highlight my hair with lemons every summer. Though it’s not that glamorous, the pips get everywhere!) lounging beneath the shade of Neroli trees in Portofino. This decade was all about structure, high waists and off the shoulder styles. This is a most flattering style for a return to the beach from a pasta filled lunch. A+ I say.
I’m drooling over this She Made Me crochet one piece, speaking true to Jane Birkin in all her natural, braless glory. Swimwear in the 1970’s was laid back, undone and barely there. Bikinis moved with the body and were incredibly comfortable (finally!) with only subtle hints of ‘extra’ in the form of crochet and embroidery. Get down to earth and accessorize with the surprising yet welcome return of seashell jewellery, one of the more bohemian trends you’ll see floating around this season.
Possibly one of the most daring of decades, swimsuits of the 80’s were simultaneously high rise, low cut and backless. Going one further than hip grazing – the cut of the leg was waist grazing! Yikes! Fortunately, the one piece is an essential summer style to integrate into everyday dressing because of it’s duality, throw on a skirt and rock it as a bodysuit. My personal strategy is straight out of Miami Vice, wearing one under my new baggy beige power suit. All I’m missing is a yacht (and the millions of dollars to pay for it! Haha!) and a brightly coloured jet ski. Way back then – beach bound translated to Over The Top glamour; this demands bold jewellery, broad belts and colour coordinated accessories from your power style swimsuit right down to your oversized beach towel. Radical!
So to summarise, this ode to procrastination has proven itself a helpful exercise. I’m finally firm in a decision, I’m going to become Sophia Loren – meaning – we need to go to Italia! Book the gondola! Pass the limoncello! Ciao ? x
Let me know in the comments what your beach inspo is?