Bathing Belles and Fashionable Gents

This week I met up with my mum for a day out (our first in AGES!). After getting some delicious cakes to fill us up we headed over to Glasgow’s Scotland Street School Museum. This was the first time I’d visited and I have to say it’s a really nice museum. It’s essentially an old school building, which as my mum pointed out, was almost the exact same layout as her primary school in Glasgow years ago. She could have probably given me a guided tour without much trouble 🙂

The main reason for our visit was the Bathing Belles exhibition showing “200 years of swimming in Glasgow” I was quite excited to see some Victorian, Edwardian and other vintage-y swimwear but I was slightly disappointed in the number of pieces they had on display. It was quite a small room, and wasn’t used to its full advantage really. There were plenty of photographs and stories which were fun to look at but it didn’t really go into much depth about anything. It felt a bit like an introduction to history exhibition rather than something more focused.

One even more disappointing factor was the video display that was showing home movie footage and the like of open air beauty pageants but didn’t bother offering any information as to time and place, which kind of made the whole thing pointless.

However I did take some photos of the pieces on display and thought I’d share some of my favourite!


A wonderful late Victorian two-piece, I am determined to replicate this one day for myself.


This is a gorgeous set made of silk. I think it was late Edwardian, when it was fashionable to wear “Beach pyjamas” also when it was still considered indecent for woman to show a lot of skin.

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Both examples of 1950s swimwear, I absolutely love the darting in the suit. I’m also convinced that we have a bathing cap like that sitting in our loft somewhere that used to belong to my grandma.

Now we get onto the knitted swimwear. We have something similar to the first one at my parent’s house that once belonged to my grandfather. And as my brother once said “you can’t beat a nice bit of knitted swimwear”

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I also love the colour choices of the second one, salmon pink with maroon. Yikes!


I love the structure in these older pieces. Before nylon and Lycra were used, the dressmakers still needed to use darts and seams to shape the outfit to the body. This piece is definitely for showing off your beach body, even if you were just sunbathing in Prestwick on summer holidays.

In other news I’m almost finished the bodice and sleeve sections of my regency gown. I’ll be attaching the sleeves tomorrow. I’ve also found the fabric I want to use for my front fall breeches, so I’ll hopefully be getting that in the next week or so. This also means I can move on from the toile and finish my blog posts about the toile!!

I’ve also started listing a few of my pieces on eBay and I seem to be getting a bit of interest so that good 🙂 Anyway I hope you enjoyed my jaunt into Glasgow.

Until next time

See you in the future ♥

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