This week marks the 75th anniversary of the bikini as we have come to know it. Though women were wearing two-piece bathing suits as far back as the 1930s, they officially became the “bikini” in 1946, when the French engineer Louis Réard unveiled his then scandalously scanty design.?
Designers have played with that original silhouette ever since; utilising innovative swim and stretch fabrics to create contemporary takes. Heritage maisons have literally put their stamp on the bikini: Chanel’s former creative director Karl Lagerfeld called upon his muses Naomi Campbell and Claudia Schiffer to model double C-adorned bikinis for spring/summer 1994.
Over the years, British Vogue has charted changing swimwear trends. Zesty acid-bright bikini tops, patterned styles and crochet versions are just a handful of styles documented in the pages of the magazine. Most recently for the June 2021 issue, Anok Yai memorably posed in a sunshine-yellow Hermès bikini for a dreamy fashion story entitled Golden Days, shot by Lachlan Bailey and styled by Clare Richardson.?
Below, revisit 18 photographs of bikinis in Vogue – wanderlust guaranteed.?