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Changing Tides: 100 Years of Iconic Swimwear

Start Date 10 May 2016
End Date 07 August 2016
Venue The Esse Purse Museum
Location Little Rock, Arkansas, USA
side view of exhibition of 3 mannequins in historic swimwear c. 1920s
exhibition display of magazines, sun hats, sunglasses
exhibition of mannequin in historic swimwear - pink bikini with a pleated pink skirt, underneath which sit beach accessories of towel, magazine, camera, bags

ESSE Purse Museum is excited to announce a new temporary exhibit, Changing Tides: 100 Years of Iconic Swimwear, which opens Tuesday, May 10, 2016. The exhibit runs through Sunday, August 7 and is included in regular admission price.

Changing Tides highlights iconic women’s swimwear in the 20th Century. From homemade to haute couture, the core installation features select suits on loan from the collection of the Fashion History Museum in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada.

Beginning in the 1900’s, the exhibit invites visitors to reflect on the changing styles, materials, silhouettes, and expressions in women’s swimwear over the course of 100 years. From voluminous wool bathing costumes and silk pageant suits to gingham bikinis and skin-tight spandex, the exhibit features iconic examples of major fashion trends as recreational swimming and bathing developed as a social activity over the course of the 20th Century.

The exhibit draws from the collections of the Fashion History Museum and ESSE Purse Museum.