Rudi Gernreich

Rudi Gernreich, arguably most famous for the topless swimsuits he launched in the 60s, was a driving force in the sartorial revolution of the 60s in the U.S.

 

20130124-212231.jpg
^Here, Peggy Moffitt models his first topless swimsuit design. It is 1964.

 

20130124-212501.jpg
Noted for his penchant for androgyny, his swimwear was as unisex as nature would allow.

 

20130124-213010.jpg

20130124-213026.jpg
^The Monokini for which he is still known, 50 years later.^

 

20130124-213139.jpg

I have read that Gernreich's topless suits launched the topless beach craze, though I have also read that the swimwear was not a commercial home run. Not so, his famous 'No Bra', which was a best seller from Day One.

 

20130124-214634.jpg

20130124-214642.jpg

20130124-214650.jpg

It seems so mundane nowadays; a sheer bra with no wire or padding. At the time, it was nothing short of revolutionary. Bras before this were made to change the shape of a woman's breasts; not celebrate their natural shape.

But Gernreich also designed more than swimwear and underwear.

 

20130124-215939.jpg
^Here, Peggy Moffitt models a Gernreich look in 1971.

More of Gernreich's creative work:

 

20130124-220957.jpg

20130124-221012.jpg

20130124-221022.jpg

20130124-221036.jpg

20130124-221132.jpg
^With his model and muse, Peggy Moffitt.

A quasi-famous video of Peggy Moffitt sporting Gernreich looks, filmed by Moffitt's husband, longtime collaborator of Gernreich's, photographer William Claxton, called 'Basic Black' is said to be the first fashion video.