Swingin’ Summer


Swingin’ Summer, a collaboration between the FIDM Museum Shop and Clever Vintage Clothing, pays homage to the influence of swimwear on fashion and culture. On view in the FIDM Museum lobby through late July, this installation of swimwear and casual fashions includes ensembles by Catalina, Alfred Shaheen and the Kamehameha Garment Company. This installation is FREE and open to the public Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Selections from Swingin’ Summer are featured below. Stop by the FIDM Museum lobby to see the full installation!


IMG_0017Ocean-themed straw handbags from the 1950s. The sequin embellished bag (front) was made in Japan, and the green and gold seashell handbag (back) is from Texas.


IMG_0066Crafted from solid wood, the surfboard pictured here was handmade in 1938 by 12 year-old Don Scott of Whittier, CA. Scott was ahead of the wave; it wasn’t until after World War II that surfing became widely popular in Southern California. Retailed by Sears, Roebuck and Co, the  green, red and turquoise patterned shirt and swim trunk ensemble (left) dates from the late 1950s. The strapless purple print bathing suit (center) is by Catalina. One of the best-known brands in the swimwear industry, Catalina was been in existence since 1928. The late 1940s green, yellow and white playsuit (right) is by the Kamehameha Garment Company. Named for a noteworthy Hawaiian king, Kamehameha has been manufacturing aloha wear since 1936. Surfboard from the collection of Clever Vintage Clothing customer Craig Scott.


IMG_0028-2This poolside set is the product of a 1958 collaboration between Rudi Gernreich and Alfred Shaheen. At the time of this collaboration, Shaheen was already a noted designer of beach and casual wear. Within a year, Gernreich would be designing a line under his own name. Though Gernreich started out with relatively straightforward womenswear, he soon began designing provocative, unusual clothing. Gernreich’s most notorious design was the 1964 topless bathing suit. From the collection of Clever Vintage Clothing customer Audrey Moorehead.

Unless otherwise noted, all garments are from the collection of Clever Vintage Clothing.


2 responses to “Swingin’ Summer

  1. Sharon Breshears says:

    What a fun collection to display. The Rudi Gernreich set is great fun. I can imagine a vintage clothing fan wearing that to the beach today.

  2. Karen Herbaugh says:

    I love the the swimwear vignette. Catalina used a lot of fabric by the Associate American Artists in the early 1950s to make their swimwear.

Leave a Reply