Barbra’s 1950’s Tartan Bikini

Barbra Streisand rocked this adorable Jantzen brand, tiered ruffle & Tartan, two piece swim suit around the late 1950’s. This swimsuit was made of Galey And Lord cotton and sold for $11 at the time at retail shops like Filenes and Saks Fifth Avenue.  Even as a teen, her eye for fashion was already shining through with this selection. Jantzen is a brand of swimwear that was established in 1916 and first appeared in the city of Portland, Oregon.

The bikini was introduced in France in 1946 to set the style for brevity in swimwear and became a worldwide fashion classic.
The 1954 movie Brigadoon, caused a surge in the popularity of tartan patterns, even for swimwear.

When it came to bikini fashion in the ’50s, high-waisted bikini bottoms were daring and trendsetting. Around this time, swimsuit designers were starting to up the ante in terms of what was acceptable to show in public. For this cut, the waistline measured up to the natural waistline, always covering the belly button. Tops were usually a halter or bra hybrid. This swimsuit style was sexy, but gave more coverage to those hesitant to bare their midriff. This style of swimsuit embraces a classic feminine silhouette that flatters most figures.

**Special thank you to Chuck Macklin for the enhanced images.