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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz County, California — The American West (Pacific Coastal)
 

Fickle Fashion

From Bloomers and Black Stockings to Baggies and Bikinis

 
 
Fickle Fashion Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, January 8, 2013
1. Fickle Fashion Marker
Photo captions, left side, top to bottom:
The Age of Modesty, Early 1900s. Bathing costumes were large neck-to-knee garments, heavy and highly impractical when wet; Swimmers Get More Daring, 1920s – ‘30s. Men and women wore wool tank suits with mid-thigh length undershorts. In the 1930s, cotton replaced wool, making swimming safer; Using Less Fabric, 1940s – ‘50s. Women’s two-piece bathing suits became acceptable in the 1950s as long as they covered the navel. Men’s trucks were short and form fitting; Liberating the Body, 1960’s – ‘70s. The bikini meant new freedom for women. Lycra and nylon trucks called “baggies” became fashionable for men; Freedom to Choose, 1980s to today. Bathing suits have gone about as far as they can. Now beach-goers can enjoy the freedom to chose their own style.
Center photograph: Faye Lanphier, Miss America 1925.
Inscription. At the turn of the century, lounging couples covered the beach much as they do today. But the women were fully dressed, and men wore hats and coats. Laws prohibited sitting on the beach in bathing attire. Today, from bikinis to tankinis, women’s beachwear stresses comfort and individuality. The popularity of the local surf culture makes baggy “board shorts” the most popular choice of men’s swimsuits.
 
Erected by Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.
 
Location. 36° 57.853′ N, 122° 1.034′ W. Marker is in Santa Cruz, California, in Santa Cruz County. Marker can be reached from Beach Street. Click for map. This marker is opposite Looff's Carousel, facing the beach. Marker is at or near this postal address: 400 Beach Street, Santa Cruz CA 95060, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk Boards (within shouting distance of this marker); Magical Merry-go-round (within shouting distance of this marker); Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk (within shouting distance of this marker); Burgers at the Beach (within shouting distance of this marker); Beauty and the Beach
Fickle Fashion Marker image. Click for full size.
By Barry Swackhamer, January 8, 2013
2. Fickle Fashion Marker
(within shouting distance of this marker); Boardwalk Goes Hollywood (within shouting distance of this marker); ACE Roller Coaster Landmark (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Giant Dipper (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Santa Cruz.
 
More about this marker. This marker is located on the grounds of the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.
 
Also see . . .  Swim Wear History - Vintage Fashion Guild. You may think that the body-baring bikinis of today would have shocked the world centuries ago but you’d be wrong. Actually today’s swimwear is rather similar to that which was worn in ancient Greece as far back as 300 BC. (Submitted on January 25, 2013, by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California.) 
 
Categories. Arts, Letters, Music
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. This page has been viewed 317 times since then and 17 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Barry Swackhamer of San Jose, California. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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