About Anne Cole

“There is no such thing as a bad figure. There are just bad swimsuits.” – Anne Cole

Anne Cole is a legendary swimwear brand with a history as interesting and storied as its namesake founder. Anne Cole was a fiery, shrewd businesswoman who forever changed the male-dominated swimwear industry with her flattering designs and relatable wit. As she was frequently known to say, “Come and talk to me about your figure problems. If you donʼt have any, letʼs talk about mine.”

Becoming a swimwear icon

Anne first entered the world of fashion in the 1950s at her father’s swimwear company, Cole of California. As she worked her way through the ranks, her unique perspective on sales and marketing shaped Cole of California into an icon. From there, she launched her eponymous collection, creating styles for women of every age that flatter with effortless ease. Perhaps most famously, Anne created the original Tankini, blending the modesty of a one-piece swimsuit with the flexibility of a two-piece.

Today’s Anne Cole

Renowned for its comfortable sophistication and flattering silhouettes, the Anne Cole brand offers a full collection of high-quality fashion swimwear in women’s and plus sizes. Most of all, it reflects the confidence and vibrancy of active, ageless women.

1925

Anne Cole’s father, Fred Cole, founds a new swimwear division within his family’s knitwear company; over the years, Cole of California gains notoriety among elite stars, costume designers, and couture fashion designers

1927

Anne Cole is born

1951

After studying at UCLA and Holy Names Colleges, Anne begins working for Cole of California in sales and marketing, launching the brand into the spotlight when stars such as Esther Williams, Elizabeth Taylor, and Marilyn Monroe appear in Cole of California swimsuits

1960

Anne moves to NYC to open an East Coast office for Cole of California

1964

Anne introduces the “Scandal Suit,” a tastefully provocative one-piece swimsuit with mesh inserts that became the first in history to break $1 million in sales

1982

Anne creates her own eponymous swimwear label and returns to California

1985

Anne is voted into the prestigious CFDA (Council of Fashion Designers of America)

1997

Anne invents the Tankini, based on her true understanding of women’s desire for modesty and convenience

2000

Anne introduces the innovative concept of swimsuit separates, which give each woman the flexibility to mix and match tops and bottoms for her perfect style and fit

2003

Anne begins making retail appearances

2009

After a lifetime of revolutionizing the swimwear industry, Anne retires

2016

STUDIO Anne Cole launches, bringing a new trend-driven flair to the brand

Jan 10, 2017

Anne Cole passes away at the age of 90

Today

We continue to carry on Anne’s sophisticated swimwear legacy

The New Generation: STUDIO Anne Cole

Launched in 2016, STUDIO Anne Cole brings a dash of whimsy to the latest silhouettes from our design headquarters in New York City. We’ve blended elements that are classically Anne (like our vintage 1982 maillot) with leading-edge trends to stretch the boundaries of traditional swimwear. Continuing Anne Cole’s legacy of creating swimwear that women want to wear, the STUDIO line offers contemporary and stylish swimwear to a new generation of women.