Kempt

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Here’s a Patently Bizarre Tank Suit Ad from 1970

From time to time, we stumble upon a photograph from the past that simply defies logic. Take this tank suit ad published by Condé Nast in 1970, for example...

What we do know:

Title: “Man Modeling Tank Suit” • Photographer: Mark Patiky, of “Miles Davis Lounging on Bed of Skins with Unidentified Female” fame. • Corbis Description: “A male model lounges on a beach in front of a jeep and a police officer wears a pair of aviator sunglasses, striped tank-suit with a high scoop neck made of ribbed acrylic fiber, by Drummond.”

What we do not know:

• The definition of “tank suit.” • Why there is no mention in the Corbis description of a woman soft-shoeing down the beach in an evening gown. • Whether this is a real police officer, since the only town he looks to be serving and protecting is Sodomyville.

We welcome your thoughts on the matter...

Fell Off the Truck

Here’s something fresh in from Pitti Uomo that you won’t have to wait till 2013 to get your hands on: Manebí footwear.

They’re part espadrille (with a rope sole), part tuxedo slipper (some are embroidered with an octopus, for instance), and you can even get them in suede. They’re basically the physical manifestation of the spirit of Saint-Tropez. (Where they were designed, naturally.) Keep them handy for your next semiformal beach bonfire.

Take a closer look at some of our favorites after the jump.»

The Aloha Short

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The options for eye-popping beachwear just keep getting better.

These Hawaiian shorts come from Reyn Spooner (with a little help from Opening Ceremony). The archival fabric is from one of the dustier ends of Spooner’s history—more Jack Lord than Tom Selleck—which adds some much needed retro style. And since our first commandment of summer shorts is tasteful loudness, we’re understandably impressed.

They’ve also got a brace of camp shirts on offer—but for your retinas' sake, stick to one pattern at a time.

The Beach Towel

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We’re going to hazard a guess and predict that you’ll find yourself on a beach at some point in the next few months. And once you’re there, you’re going to need a beach towel of some sort to sprawl out upon while you contemplate life’s mysteries and work on your tan.

In which case, we believe we can be of some assistance.

Deck Towel makes some of the better beach towels we’ve seen, thanks to tropical color schemes and soft linens light enough to be folded into a tote bag. And since they’re lighter than the cotton equivalent, they’ll pick up a lot less sand when you pack them back up.

Now, to find an umbrella.

Tunisia Calling

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A beach can tempt even the most stylish gents into questionable outfits, but it’s not all bad. For instance, this beach hat from APC might be handsome enough to warrant a vacation on its own. Walking the line between native artisanship and cowboy colonialism, it’s our new favorite alternative to SPF. Watch for it arriving in APC shops on Thursday, along with the rest of APC’s new capsule collection, dubbed The Tunisian List.

Wallflowers

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Norsea’s 2010 catalog just came down the transom, and while there’s a fresh supply of liberty prints in tow, this Duke beach shirt struck us as a more impressive move.

After all, if we’re going floral, it’s survival of the loudest. And this one manages to reach almost Hawaiian levels of business while maintaining a certain stately grandeur. It’s not easy to put together elegiac beach gear, but Norsea seems to have it figured out.

Castaway

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The lightweight shirt can be tough to pull off, especially since they tend to wrinkle up so fast as to be almost unusable after the first season, but if you happen to find yourself on the beach at some point in the next few months, you’ll know a well-placed bit of linen is priceless.

Or, in this case, scrim. This shirt from San Francisco’s Nice Collective (via acquire) should fit the bill pretty well, provided you do the right thing and let the shirttails hang loose. It’s so casual, they don’t even bother to hem the bottom, so you’ll have a line of loosely cut fabric hanging over your belt…or maybe your bathing suit.