Saturday, March 10, 2012

Vintage Swimming Girls

How do I explain my love affair with vintage diving girls and vintage swim suits?  Sounds a little weird, I know...

The first time I ever spotted these vintage swimmers from America Retold,  I knew I was a goner.  I think I bought 40 of these candle holders in every color and shape imaginable, for our first store in Poulsbo.  These black, white and red ones gracing my office bookshelf might be the only ones I have left...

And then there were these girls, we could not keep enough of them in stock for our store customers or our online customers.   (photo taken on my old deck in Manchester, WA)

I think you can still find these bathing beauty girls online and locally (if you live near the beach) I spotted them a few months ago in the Cliff House Sutro Bar in San Francisco.

Just a few more of my favorite vintage bathing beauty finds - 
most spotted at the Alameda Flea Market, my go-to for inspiration!

 Framed image spotted at the Cliff House, former Sutro Baths competition swimming venue in the 20's-30's. The entire restaurant is covered in these fun images!  I snapped this one a few months ago when we took Tom's mom out to dinner there.

 1920's California Girls  (online for less than a day!)

French Flea Market Umbrella - LOVE!

Kicking myself for not buying this photo!

I did buy the Jantzen ad!  Could not resist it - and now it takes up a big corner on my messy office bulletin board, along with the vintage Chris Craft ad.

Now to give you some ideas for using vintage swimming suits and vintage swimming girls in your beach house!   Spotted at Houzz and on Pinterest earlier this week:
From Beach Vintage - I first spotted this cool idea at Completely-Coastal months ago, and kept it for future reference.  How simple, but such a great mix of modern and vintage!  Why did I give away my favorite red and white striped bathing suit????

Check out this cool framed vintage bathing suit mixed with a framed black sea fan, bright lime greens and MORE zebra stripes.  From Kate Jackson Designs.  

Or how about this bright aqua green and turquoise living room? I am simply nuts about all of the bright happy colors, and that The diving girl pillow caught my eye right away!

Where can you find your very own vintage bathing girls?  

 Ebay has quite a few different options for prints and bathing suits.

Found quite a few of these vintage bathing girls at, and also on or you can go Google search using the terms "Dr. Livingstone - bathing beauties" and some other ideas will come up too.

Or there is lots of fun stuff at Etsy! Like all of the prints at Vintage Beach shop 

Or there's always Caron's Beach House.....

Diving Girl Art (PS these are customizable too!)

 Get creative and have this fun art piece custom designed for your beach home by changing a few of the phrases!  Aqua Diving Girl

New Bathing Suit Pillow - way too cute, and double side, check it out!

See, I told you I have a little bit of an obsession. Have a great weekend everyone!  


Kim@Snug Harbor said...

I really like the old bathing suit photos. What a cute decorating idea. When I was a kid, we always had to wear a bathing cap when swimming - either in a pool or the lake. I'll have to go see if I can find any old photos to frame. Thanks for the great idea!

Lesli @ said...

I'm with you Caron! I absolutely love the vintage bathing beauty figurines and the framed swimsuits.

Lesli @

Completely Coastal said...

I thing the bathing beauties are adorable! I've seen them here and there in interior shots. And I love the retro swim suits! Thanks so much for the mention!!!

Tricia Rose Rough Linen said...

I was a child swimsuit model in the fifties Caron, and have a whole book of the photos. Will show you when you visit! Very cheesy...

June said...

What an awesome post (AND blog)Caron!
That oval print is such a hoot! Funny...I still have the suit I bought right after I was married eons ago. Could never seem to part with it.
I am so thrilled you stopped by my place. SO glad you found me in the big sea of blogs :)

Gberger said...

This reminds me of my grandparents' honeymoon photos - they took a ship from San Francisco to Honolulu in 1931! And I L.O.V.E. that turquoise room! Ooohlala.

Maya Lee said...

Nice vintage pieces. Really worth having at home.


Rose West said...

I think vintage bathing suits are great - I wish they were more in fashion!

Anita @ GoingALittleCoastal said...

Oh Caron, I love those black and white diving girls! The pillow is adorable too. I'd love to find an old panoramic shot. I am always drawn to them when I see them but they are usually priced way too high for me.

CB said...

Thanks so much for mentioning our
Bathing Beauties... I love your
mix of vintage beach decor and
will be sure to check out your
blog when I'm not so tired... it's
2am and time to get some sleep :).

Have a Terrific Day!


Cheri at

Unknown said...

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