Easy, Breezy, and Beachy, 1930’s Style

Lilyan Tashman Collage

While all of you brave and beautiful ladies are basking in your swimsuits by the pool this summer, you’ll find me in the shade, likely nowhere near the pool, but still embracing a beachy trend straight out of the Twenties and Thirties: Beach Pajamas.

Beach pajamas for the modern gal.
Strolling along, always looking for shade.

This loungewear got its start as bedroom attire. Before long, it was being seen on beaches around the world. In the 1970s, the fad returned in the form of palazzo pants. The category of Resort Wear got its start in the transitional style idea behind beach pajamas.

Anita Page, Raquel Torres in November 1930 in Beach Pajamas.
Photo from Glamourdaze.com, a great resource for all kinds of fashion history!

My outfit from Anthropologie would fit right in with the ladies roaming the beaches in the Thirties. Today, I could wear this to the beach as a swimsuit coverup, but as I mentioned above, I’m not really a beach person. Still, I like this easy breezy look. I don’t just have to limit it to a resort or beach. I can wear this all over Seattle when the temperatures hit over 90°F/32°C.


Some places in Seattle where I can wear this:

Shopping at Pike Place Market:

Shopping at Pike Place Market in Seattle.
That’s not me shopping. 🙂 This photo is from Pike Place Market’s website.

Listening to great music at Seattle’s Out to Lunch concerts:

The Dusty 45s are regular musicians at the Out to Lunch Concerts in Seattle.
The Dusty 45s are a favorite of mine. I try to catch them every summer. Photo from the Downtown Seattle OTL website.

Walking through Olympic Sculpture Park and visiting the Seattle Art Museum:

Eagle sculpture at Olympic Sculpture Park in Seattle. Photo by Steven Pavlov.
One of the sculptures in the park. Photo by Steven Pavlov, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=16069809

Enjoying dinner alfresco at Oddfellows Cafe:

People enjoying food and community at Oddfellows Cafe in Seattle. Photo by Dorothee Brand.
I couldn’t find a good photo of their sidewalk patio seating. Indoor seating can be a little loud–high ceilings and lots of people–but the food is fresh and delicious and the atmosphere crackles with Seattle energy. Photo by Dorothee Brand.

If I had friends in town, I’d take them on an Argosy Harbor Cruise wearing this dress.

Argosy Harbor Cruise in Seattle.
A photo I took of Olympic Sculpture Park and the Space Needle from an Argosy Harbor Cruise a couple of years ago.

I could also just sway back and forth in this dress. The movement has sort of an hypnotic feel to it.

You’re getting very sleepy….




Can you tell yet that this jumpsuit is super comfy? Let me show you just how roomy this puppy is:


For those of us with small assets up top, there’s a built-in shelf bra. If you prefer some extra support, there are bra strap clips sewn into the shoulders straps.


The back of the jumpsuit dips low and has an elastic band about mid-back. A ribbon that criss-crosses on the front ties in the back. The shoulder straps are adjustable with two buttons on each strap that make the armholes longer or shorter, depending on preference and fit.


My shoes are thrifted Eileen Fisher. (Similar styles are available at Sundance Catalog.) The hat is from a couple of years ago. I bought it at Goorin Bros. right in Pike Place Market here in Seattle. (Here’s a similar version from Nordstrom–and it’s on sale!) And the sunglasses are Kate Spade.


Shop this Look:

Anthropologie Tallulah Wide-Leg Jumpsuit  |  Eileen Fisher wedge sandals (thrifted): Similar  |  Goorin Bros. Hat (bought locally several years ago): Similar  |  Kate Spade sunglasses

1930s Summer Playlist:

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  • I would have never realized that this look came from the 30’s!!
    It just goes to show how many items have been around a couple times in fashion history!
    So I’m just like you—no beaches for me anymore, but who wants tight fitting, body hugging clothing when it’s hot outside?
    I’m what I call a newbie to jumpsuits, but I’ve been finding them more advantageous the more I’m willing to like them! You look absolutely splendid in this one!! The ease is kinda like a dress, huh?
    Will it be too cold for a harbor cruise when we’re there? (how interesting to include pix of Seattle in this post!!)

    • I know — isn’t it wild how you can scratch the surface of a trend and find its history? I think that is so cool.

      The mere idea of tight-fitting clothing when it’s hot outside makes me sweat! I’m with you — loose jumpsuits (or dresses) for everyone! Like you, I’m a newbie to jumpsuits as well! I’ve avoided them for a while because I didn’t think any would fit, but I do like how this one fits — it feels very much like a maxi dress. In fact, I kept writing “dress” when I wrote this post because it feels so much like that.

      The Harbor Cruise will be running when you’re in town, so we can definitely go! We might need to bundle up or, at the very least, we can sit inside the ship instead of on top. You never know–with Seattle weather these days, we could get a warm, sunny day in February that would be perfect for an outing like that! Either way, I’m game! I love going on this cruise! 🙂

  • That jumpsuit looks SO COMFORTABLE!!! Love it!

    I’m not much of a beach person unless I am in the water snorkelling or under an umbrella reading my Kindle.


  • Hi Sherry. Had to check out the jumpsuit post after reading your article on Sixty and Me last week; I commented there about my love of maxis and jumpsuits and you said you’d be writing about it this week! Great look on you and nice to read more about you. We share similar interests so I’m following you on Pinterest now, one of my very favorite social websites! Thanks for sharing all of your wonderful posts.

    • Hi Sue! Thank you so much for checking out the jumpsuit post! And thank you for following me on Pinterest! I hope you’re finding all kinds of fun things to pin and be inspired by!

      Have a great week!

      – Sherry

  • Sherry this is an adorable look on you! Love your hat, shoes, sunglasses, the whole outfit. When I looked at Jodie’s take on jumpsuits, I thought I would never wear one of those again, but you gals have made them look so appealing. The thing I like about this is that it looks like a maxi dress, but you have the advantage of bare legs not sticking together under volumes of material because the legs are separated. Ha, ha. I love that idea. Thanks for the inspiration…I may just have to find myself a jumpsuit! – Amy

    • Hi Amy!

      You said it about the bare legs not sticking together under volumes of material! I think about things like that too! There is nothing ickier — well almost nothing — as sweaty legs in the summer.

      If you find a jumpsuit that you love, I hope you’ll blog about it so we can see it!

      – Sherry

    • Thank you, Laurie! It’s a super comfy outfit and perfect for those hot, sunny days. I bet you look great in hats — you just have to find the right ones! ❤️