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Let's talk about the origin of the swimsuit.  Before the 20th century, people swam in the nude.  However, women were expected to wear swimsuits at the spa.  

In 1771 the Expedition of Humphry Clinker published that women were to wear brown linen, hats, and jackets.  Can you imagine riding the waves or swimming laps in that garb? 

In 1867 women's swimsuits were made of stiff canvas and were designed with enormous sleeves.  Stiff canvas hid curves on the body and eliminated the possibility of fabric clinging to the figure.

In the 18th century women wore long "weighted" dresses.  Must have been quite daunting keeping afloat.  In the 19th century women were graced in a full-length outfit from neck to knees, and if that wasn't sufficient, additional layers of trousers with leggings down to the ankles addedto complete the look.

In 1907 Annette Kellerman was arrested for indecent exposure because her swimsuit exposed neck, arms, and legs.   In the 1920s this renegade decided to sell her offensive style swimsuit.  Thus the swimsuit revolution was born.  

In the 50s the bikini bottoms covered the navel, and in the 60s the navel was boldly displayed.   The monokini was introduced as a topless suit supported by straps.  The 80s was the era if cutouts  

Today we have one piece swimsuits, tankinis, bikinis, monokinis, swimsuits for maternity, swimsuits for mastectomy, rash guards to surf in, and swimsuits to play ball in.   We even have SPF safe suits.  The bottoms might be strings; the tops may be triangles, the fabric may be shear.  But last, but surely not least, is the original Birthday suit which is the best suit of all.

 

 

 

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