Sunday, 1 August 2010

Life's a Beach at Southend!

Since I have been collecting vintage beach items, I have discovered other people who share my passion! There is a lady in America - who has fantastic swimsuits and great knowledge about the subject, a real inspiration. I have also read other great articles about vintage swimwear by members of the Vintage Fashion Guild including fuzzy Lizzie (USA) and Nicole Jenkins (Circa Vintage Clothing, Melbourne).

Actually it was on Glamour Surfs Blog that I read about some great Jantzen beach towels. I couldn't find them in the UK anywhere and the American sites that posted to the UK charged quite a hefty airmail fee! I contacted Jantzen who were great and have sent me some. They have arrived and these are the photos of them!

Well, today I have discovered another lady who loves vintage swimwear! She is 84 years old and has had an almost life long passion about vintage beach attire! She is called Mavis Plume and has been collecting vintage beach wear for over 50 years! It started when she was a newly wed and went to a vintage car rally. Her photographer husband wanted to take a photo and she joked that she should be dressed like a bathing belle. Then her obsession began! She has over 500 pieces which range over a 150 year period. There was an article in a newspaper magazine about her this weekend. Her swimsuits are going to be in a exhibition at Southend Museum from now until October. Luckily for me, Southend is only about 50 or so miles from here so I think I'll be taking a visit down there soon!

Mavis's husband took many photos of her over the years posing in the swimsuits she acquired. Here are some photos of her (taken from the Daily Mail newspaper article)

Better still, Mavis lives in Hunstanton, Norfolk. I am heading up to that area next weekend as I am doing a fair in Burnham Market. I really really hope she visits as I would love to meet her. If she doesn't come I might try and contact her by post if I can. I bet she has some great stories about her collection!


  1. Lovely! I'm long overdue a visit to Southend so I might just have to head down there to see the exhibition ... :0)

  2. Wonderful towels. I came on here specifically to tell you about the Newspaper article and to ask you if you wanted me to keep it for you. Glad you saw it......

  3. Thanks for thinking of me with the article! I'd love to meet Mavis!

  4. I hope you do get in touch with Mavis. I saw the article on her and was just amazed!

    Thanks for mentioning me!!