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Magazine covers featuring images of swimwear

Date: 1930 - 1937
Medium: Paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Dale O'Sullivan
Object Name: Archive series
Object No: ANMS0441

User Terms

    This archive series numbered [001] - [016] consists of magazine covers featuring images of swimwear and beach scenes collected by designer Peter O'Sullivan.

    It includes 12 covers of the Knitted Outwear Age between 1930 - 1932, the cover of London Life May 1935, the cover of Men's Wear February 1937, the cover of the Australian Women's Weekly November 1935, and the cover of Walkabout - Australia and the South Seas November 1935.
    SignificanceThis is a rare archival collection with excellent display potential relating to Melbourne based swimwear designer Peter O'Sullivan. The collection documents all aspects of knitted swimwear production from the development of designs, to the choice of models, manufacture and distribution of swimwear. The collection illustrates the European and American influences on O'Sullivan's designs, as well as his innovations of the modesty-skirt and 'Superman' buckle.
    HistoryPeter O'Sullivan became the first Australian to successfully design and manufacturer swimwear for export to the United States by creating two innovations. He won the world patent for the square belt buckle, known as the 'Superman' buckle, after it was incorporated into Superman's costume and he developed the small skirt across the front of both men's and women's swimsuits known as the 'modesty panel'.

    O'Sullivan's 'modesty panel' became a feature of Australian and international swimwear fashions right up until the 1970s. His Black Lance swimwear range in the 1930s featured low cut backs, fashionable colours and decorative flourishes.

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