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Five Great: Non-Black Swimsuits | Manolo for the Big Girl

Five Great: Non-Black Swimsuits

You can have any color you want as long as it’s black. I knew that was the battle cry of good ol’ Hank Ford, but I was unaware it has translated itself to plus size swimwear as well.

On most people, black can a little harsh for the beach. Which isn’t to say I don’t have a soft spot for it –next week have a post dedicated entirely to black swimsuits– but those of us who yearn to wear something other than black, red or some teeth-grindingly awful hibiscus print, let me hit you with a few sweet suits I’ve come across recently.

Solid Sweetheart Neckline Swimdress in rose and white
See? Sweet. This could actually skew a little retro –it would on me, anything I put on my body automatically turns to 1925 except for the things that go 1955– but it’s not at all costumey. I like that it’s both bright and soft enough to do service for my fellow pale girls, but not so pale or vibrant that it washes us out. Plus how gorgeous would this look on darker skin tones? So gorgeous I just might spit.


Retro Convertible Halter in Blue
Now HERE is retro. It’s also my anointed swimsuit for this summer. Although I never wear halter tops otherwise, I find the visual interest up top balances out my hips for a more evenly distributed hourglass. Another thing I dig about this suit is the straps are adjustable, so you can convert it from a halter (plus however else you want to tie it) to a bandeau.

I think big girls tend to overlook the strapless swimsuit. I’m not saying it’s the most practical thing in the world if you’re chasing after rugrats and whatnot, but for apples and broad-shouldered pears it can be extremely flattering. Plus no tan lines on your shoulders and perhaps MOST importantly, it allows you to wear big ridiculous necklaces, and if there is anything more entertaining than wearing big jewelry on the beach, I can’t print it here.

Fuchsia Berry Shirred Miracle Suit
I love this suit because it looks so fashiony and yet it’s a really easy look to pull off successfully. Almost anyone could wear this and look like a million bucks. Pale girls? Yep, just remember to wear some color on your lips. Dark girls? Heaven. I’d only advise against it if you’re extremely narrow shouldered since that deep plunge will make them look even more narrow. Other than that, have at it and try not to act surprised when people drool.


Teal Jewel Halter Swimdress
Oh man, how effortless is this? It’s easy fitting but the jeweled halter makes it special and unexpected, plus it draws the attention up to the neckline and face and not the hips and belly. I don’t subscribe to the theory that everyone must spend all their beach time covering their “flaws” but it’s nice to get a little attention focused to where you want it, WITHOUT showing off a ton of rack.

Boho Print Swimdress
I almost wanted to call this a Liberty print because my grandmother had a Liberty scarf from the early 70’s that is very similar, but that doesn’t really have anything to do with the story other than it’s surprising she got a Liberty of London scarf in Thailand and kept it because, despite her many many fine qualities, all that woman’s taste was in her mouth. Anyway, It’s a refreshing break from All Enormous Florals All The Time and great for anyone who wants to nod to her inner hippie chick without busting out the love beads and roach clips.

12 Responses to “Five Great: Non-Black Swimsuits”

  1. RB June 17, 2011 at 1:16 pm #

    These are some lovely suits for the proportionately-racked among us…any suggestions for ladies like me, whose breasts are far larger than proportions suggest they ought to be? As a size 18/20 and 44G, suits that come in dress sizes just don’t work. If I buy a one piece or tankini top large enough for my chest, it bags and droops everywhere else, including the straps, which means that the girls get plenty of room but no support at all. If I buy a suit to fit the rest of me, the girls pop out for fresh air at the slightest provocation. Swimsuits sized like bras only tend to go up to a D or DD cup, and even then the band sizes stop at 40, as if to suggest that they’re not intended for plus size women at all. I live near the beach and love swimming, and it kills me that it’s been years since I’ve had a suit that fits me well, never mind one that flatters and looks stylish. Can you help me?

  2. jojo.k June 17, 2011 at 3:36 pm #

    Plummie
    Have you ever visited http://www.esther-williams.com/shop/ ?
    Yes, that Esther Williams.

    If you want retro swim suits, you need to check it out.

  3. Violet June 17, 2011 at 11:18 pm #

    RB, start by searching Fantasie, Freya and Panache. Not cheap but they do exist.

  4. Imogen Lamport June 18, 2011 at 11:21 pm #

    So agree with you about black not being great for most women on the beach.

    you’ve found some great suits here for lots of women!

  5. Bree June 19, 2011 at 12:45 pm #

    I find that I can’t do the halters because of my chest size, but scoop necks are pretty supportive. I’ve also found that the shelf bras are a lot more nicer to larger-chested ladies than foam cups because at least with me, they keep the girls in place and there’s less jiggling (unless you’re going for that effect in the first place);)

  6. Jenne June 19, 2011 at 4:11 pm #

    I love the retro-look swimsuits, but like Bree I have too large of a bosom for a halter top–I feel like my head is going to fall off!

    Do you have any suggestions for retro swimsuits with two straps? (Strapless is also not the best option for cavorting in the water)

  7. mel June 19, 2011 at 9:54 pm #

    Girl overboard!!!!!! HELP!!!!!

    This is not about swimwear, but I’m in need of an answer anyhow. A friend has made dinner reservations for the next few weeks and I need a dress. He’s planned Marea, Per Se, and La Bernadine – HELP! I’m a 24, 46G, 5’7″ and I need something fantastic. HELP!!!!!! I’ve got a couple of maxi dresses but they just don’t feel swanky enough – I need elegant, NY sophisitcation.

  8. barb June 19, 2011 at 10:52 pm #

    Lovely suits you’ve found.
    For anybody looking for suits for water exercise, I recommend H2Owear. They’re fully lined to give support and hold everything in. In addition to basic styles, they even have suits with legs.
    http://www.h2owear.com
    For chesty gals, try pairing your suit with a lycra sports bra.

  9. Ananas June 20, 2011 at 10:34 am #

    I had that Miracle suit (in black, but I look good in black), and I ADORED it. I also lost it when I moved and was CRUSHED. I’m something of a hourglass, and it was great on me. Also, their miracle suiting stuff is not pinchy, as some “look like you lost ten pounds!” suits can be, it’s more supportive.

  10. Miss Plumcake June 20, 2011 at 1:32 pm #

    @Mel: How fab! Unfortunately what you’re asking for goes beyond Friendly Advice Town and lands squarely in the middle of Mama’s Got To Get Paid Junction. Personal styling is a service that invites a fee. I’d be glad to give you a consult as a client, but I can’t give away the stylish milk for free. It wouldn’t be fair to my paying clients, or to me.

  11. mel June 22, 2011 at 10:38 pm #

    Maybe I’m doing it wrong, but the email address up top for contacting is not at all working… It gives me a fatal error.

  12. Miss Plumcake June 22, 2011 at 11:20 pm #

    Mel: Ah that stupid email link gives me nothing but trouble. It’s plumcake@shoeblogs.com