Boulevard is always on the prowl for cool, locally available products that set Louisville apart. But every now and then, we run across an item so achingly beautiful, we break my solo-local rule. For the first time, here’s one:
British clothing company Orlebar Brown’s signature Bulldog mid-length swim shorts. They’re the latest in a collection based on society photographer Slim Aarons‘ pool photos taken in the 1960s and ’70s in Palm Beach, the Riviera, and other resorts made famous by that era’s jet-setters. (Keep reading for more about Aarons.) This pair is from a 1975 photo of the Princess Hotel in Acapulco. It’s $345, not including sales tax.
Each pair is individual, and expertly mapped to work 360° around in extraordinary detail, as you can see in this side view:
Although I like this model best, there are plenty more to choose from.
About the designer
Photographer Adam Brown launched Orlebar in London in 2007. It got a big publicity boost in 2012, when producers of that year’s James Bond film Skyfall confirmed star Daniel Craig was wearing Orlebar poolside. You can’t buy any of the company’s clothes locally, unfortunately; the closest retailer is in Birmingham, Ala. (Weird, yes.) Of course, you can mail-order direct from the company.
But here’s what’s truly handy: the lovely Lakeside Swim Club in the Highlands’ Belknap neighborhood. It’s open to members and their guests all summer until 9 p.m.; opening times vary. Operating hours.
Lakeside opened in 1924 at the site of a former rock quarry, according to Wikipedia. It’s known for its steep, 40-foot rock walls and huge quarry “lake” — actually, a 3.2 million gallon swimming pool, with a flat concrete bottom and depths ranging from 3-20 feet:
He published his photographs in Town & Country and other society shiny sheets, as well as a series of books. He died in 2006 at 89, following a career made out of what he called “photographing attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places.”
Now, if you think your pool photos are even better than Aarons’, Orlebar let’s you design your own suit based on a photo you supply via the company’s #snapshorts app from the Apple and Google Play app stores. But it’ll cost you $595!
Catch 007 wearing Orlebar: