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Newspaper and magazine advertisements for swimwear and leisurewear

Date: 1930-1938
Medium: Paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Dale O'Sullivan
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Archive series
Object No: ANMS0459

User Terms

    Description
    This archive series numbered [001] - [060] consists of newspaper and magazine advertisements for various brands of swimsuits collected by designer Peter O'Sullivan. Included are swim suits by Lor and Taylors, Jantzen, Black Lance, Manton, Wahini, Wakiki, Lowes, Murdoch, Mantex and Best & Co. Various swim suit designs are advertised, such as the men's backless surf suits, spider back suits, y-backs, adjustable backs and ring backs, made from pure wool and elastic knits. Leisure wear also features, such as play suits, sandals, wraps, dresses, pant suits, blouses and shorts.
    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.
    Additional Titles

    Primary title: ADVERTISEMENTS FOR SALES OF SWIMWEAR AND LEISUREWEAR, BOTH MALE AND FEMALE, FROM A VARIETY OF STORES, COLLECTED BY PETER O'SULLIVAN

    Web title: Newspaper and magazine advertisements for swimwear and leisurewear

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