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Men's 1968 USA Olympic team-inspired swimming trunks

Date: 1968
Overall: 300 x 340 mm, 0.03 kg
Clothing size: 32
Medium: Nylon, cotton
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Speedo International Ltd
Object Name: Swimsuit
Object No: 00019025
Place Manufactured:Australia

User Terms

    These men's swimming trunks, featuring the 1968 USA Olympic swimming team uniform design, were produced in Australia by White Stag under license from Speedo. The white and blue striped nylon fabric is decorated with red and white stars inspired by the stars and stripes of the American national flag. Speedo first released commercial ranges of the designs they produced for various national Olympic teams in the 1960s.

    SignificanceThese men's swimming trunks demonstrate the influence of Olympic team designs on Speedo's commercial swimwear ranges from the 1960s.
    HistoryIn 1955 Speedo introduced nylon into its competitive swimwear range. The 1956 Olympics in Melbourne saw the widespread use of the new fabric, as well as changes in men's swimwear design.

    The development of Speedo's 'brief' swimming trunk design followed the competition guidelines dictated by FINA. At the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games the Federation Internationale de Natation (FINA) allowed men to swim skirtless for the first time. This revolutionary step spelt the end of swimming trunks with 20cm side seams. However, lowering the waist and raising the leg line was a slow process. At the 1972 Munich Olympics FINA allowed men to swim in trunks with 5cm side seams.

    The USA Olympic team wore Speedo swimsuits for the first time in 1964.

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