Here are a group of photographs by Fowler-Bagby showing appropriate outfits for a cruise, or for wear in warm climates; the article appeared in the February issue of Ladies’ Home Journal, 1936. In order to show details more clearly, I will break up larger pictures into closer views.
Bathing Suits for 1936
From left, a brown maillot under a brown jersey wrap-around skirt; “Up the ladder, skirted swim suit in the new green, with salmon-pink top, bands crossed under the chin. In blue, the famous surplice suit that came from Antibes and does wonders for a good figure. The printed cotton two-piece suit, coral pattern and coral color with white. The blonde lastex crepe suit, with the square peasant scarf worn in immigrant fashion. The heavy terry-knit maillot and swagger coat in pink and red, with a red shiny straw hat in unusual shape.” [A maillot is a one-piece swimsuit.]
The brown outfit is trimmed with “Mexican-colored bands” and includes co-0rdinated purse, belt, and shoes.The blue surplice suit is also shown with colorful sandals:I’m afraid the “blonde” lastex suit does not make a very good impression on this particular model, but the coral print two-piece shares the back interest of some evening dresses featured later in the article. The “heavy terry-knit maillot” would probably feel like swimming in a wet bath towel; it’s probably more for lounging than swimming. The 1950s swimsuits that I remember usually did not show separate leg openings like these from 20 years earlier, but had a sort of modesty panel, like the green ‘skirted’ suit on the ladder.
Two Piece Tropical Swim Suit, 1936
This story illustration, by Ritchie Cooper, appeared in the same issue as the swimsuits pictured above:
The setting is tropical (Hawaii?) and the full, skirt-like shorts resemble the coral and white print bathing suit above.
Cruise Wardrobe, 1936
This article in the Ladies’ Home Journal reminds women that they will probably be going ashore, so they will need appropriate clothes for the ports they visit, as well as evening dress for dining on board:
“Don’t misjudge your destination. Havana . . . is a metropolitan city, where you should be dressed as circumspectly as in Boston. In some places, . . . you might want to stop in at the big hotel for tea. Better wear a more conventional costume [than “your little deck dress”] and be ready! Only if you know your ground can you be casual about your clothes. If you plan to grab bicycles the minute you get off the dock in Bermuda and ride all day, then your culotte skirt would be completely comfortable and appropriate.”
The dress on the left has a culotte skirt, which looks like a normal skirt when you stand up straight. It is still not considered dressy enough for Havana. The pants on the right are very full knickers (“plus fours”) which are described as “a coming (but not an arrived) fashion. This year, probably only a few leaders will take them up.”
Versatile Jacket Dresses
The jackets make these dresses appropriate for “deck” or more formal situations on shore.
Evening Gowns and a Dinner Suit