What Will You Wear for Labor Day?

September 2, 2010

Labor Day weekend is just a few days away—what will you be wearing to celebrate the (unofficial) last weekend of summer?

Margit Fellegi, for Cole of California, "Woman's Bathing Suit," 1936, gift of Margit Fellegi

This bathing suit was designed in 1936 by Margit Fellegi for Cole of California. Using an innovative technique called "Matletex," it allowed the fabric to be shirred (gathering an area of fabric using elasticized threads in parallel rows) to create a flattering silhouette. Traditionally swimsuits were created using wool; this new process allowed for fabrics such as cotton and rayon with brightly printed patterns to be used for the first time.

detail

DeDe Johnson, "Woman's Three-piece Playsuit," late 1950s, gift of Esther Ginsberg and James Morris in memory of Don Morris

The "patio" playsuit was designed by DeDe Johnson during the late 1950s. This "sportswear" ensemble features a blouse, skirt, and shorts made of printed cotton featuring images of a barbeque, chaise, and umbrella table and chairs. I wish I had this piece; it is the perfect example of an outfit that is practical and fashionable!

Meghan Moran