Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sunday Shopping - Of Swim Suits, Kaftans, & Muu-muu-ness

As I am a water baby, I have several swim suits. I can't find a photograph of my two favorites--a navy & white polka-dot maillot & a black & white dotted halter with short swimming skirt (no, I had nothing to hide when I bought it in, of all places, a tiny chic shop in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania on some road trip or other). Before you think, oh what a bore (about bathing suits anyway), so many people stopped me on a trip to Greece about those suits that it was weird. It isn't always easy, finding that simple well-made something. I tried to help. This also happens with hats; again, I help or try to. I do not say, Oh I couldn't possibly remember or It was a gift. (Unless, indeed, it was.) That's so mean-spirited.

What I
really need as I cannot wear these suits, currently, is a caftan/kaftan. À la Elizabeth Taylor when she had "the chubbies." Gawd. It's too late to order one /shop for one --it's 100+ degrees out; it's too late to sew one. So indulging self in vintage bathing suit pix, & a few kaftans, links.

Little Augury has a particularly pretty kaftan love post from last summer (including modern & vintage photographs).
If only I'd seen her post a month ago. You'll enjoy nosing about her blog. Also, Sasha at Liberty London Girl (always interesting & fun), recently posted on Tallulah & Hope silk kaftans. I just cannot afford these but it's nice to look. With my background in the Maghreb & Middle East & rest of the Mediterranean-bleeping-Basin, one would think I'd have an emergency kaftan on hand. (I gave a good one away some years back.)

Muu-muus, anyone? I called every garment my stylish grandmother put on (after proper company left) a "muu muu." She did not correct me as it was the "moooo" sound that I so wanted to use. (I mean no disrespect to Hawaiians. Some friends sport those prints fabulously. It sounds counter-intuitive, but I'm too small to wear them well, no matter what my weight. I did not realize the possibility of the toned-down muu muu before today. )

On the way to the beach, I might buy a half-bolt of gauzy fabric & wrap self in it. A gigantic bandage sitting under a large market umbrella, that could be me. (I'm too young to be terribly eccentric! What will my excuse be later on in life?) Otherwise, as the sun sets on those off to drinks-before-dinner, I'll be patrolling the shore in a long white nightgown. I think that's the hour when the first victim became dinner in "Jaws." Uh oh.

[some images via myvintagevogue (the website is looking spectacular); some via LIFE Archives; & Elizabeth & Richard by the great Henry Clark via Retro Vintage Mod Style]


diane said...

mu-mu may be the only garment I somewhat successfully sewed. although it was in grade 8 and I hardly needed or desired such a puffy piece.

so, on my cruise I was feeling somewhat puffy myself, finding fault with all the many flaws that suddenly seemed so apparent. It bothered me for a couple of days, actually.

but then you look around and realize. you know, we all have bodies that seem to betray us in some way. and i was looking at women and how they held themselves, the arms tight at their sides over generous bellies.

we waste so much time apologizing for the state we're not in, we forget how lucky we are sometimes.

my diatribe for the night.

Giulia said...

Ah, yes, I understand. But mine is from an it does rather rankle, perhaps a bit more. Otherwise, I am rather forgiving of myself...I downplayed/made fun of it though it is actually very uncomfortable (physically). But I absolutely understand the way you mean it. I'm sure you looked lovely on your snazzy cruise last month, Diane.


Julie@beingRUBY said...

Dear Susan
I was sure I was going to need a muu muu next summer.. but just a few weeks on this blasted insulin diet and I've lost 5kgs!! great side benefit i guess.. hope it keeps going that way...

Your swimsuits sound fabulous.. i really love vintage swimsuits and always wanted one with a little skirt!!! maybe I will look for something similar next summer....

Hope you had a fabulous weekend.. xxx Julie

Susan said...

I assure everyone that I answered dear Julie (but privately)....I do hope she will visit the States next summer & wear a vintage swimsuit. I'll introduce her to many eligible men (I'll work on finding them) & hope she'll live here for a bit.