The Slide-side Halter
The slide-side halter is a variation of a string halter with slide casings, except that the string passes through slide casings on sides of the cups, rather than below them. Often the strings encircle the body before tying in the front.
The slide-side is introduced by model Christie Brinkley on the cover of Cosmopolitan in 1977, where it is combied and tied to a v-kini (CB7710). This famous Cosmo cover defines in a single stroke a retensioning of the bikini which allows new top and bottom styles to be created. The shape which it resembles also gives rise to an alternate name, the butterfly.
Cross-tensioning the top and the bottom lowers the tension point for the breast coverings to the waistline, and potentially raises the legline to underarm. The new tension point, on the sides of the waist, will affect swimsuit species for many years, both in bikini and maillot designs. Cleavage that formerly was confined to above and between the breasts now also plays to the side.
Breakout and Variations
By the early 1980s, the Brinkley silhouette is quickly imitated (WB8403, YM85 wearing Twins), even with a normal (not a slide-side) halter (VB8410).
In fact it is not at all necessary to thread the slide-side strings through the top of the v-kini (RV7952). One may also loop the chest string around the body at a higher point; the strong diagonal bias provides alternate support and the adjustable casings still let the bikiniite open up cleavage on the side of the breast. This is a common approach when the slide-side is comboed with a nombril (WB8406), string culotte (JA8210, PH8220, VB8407), or the emerging v-kini (JB8401, VB8420, WB8502), sometimes with a string side (N197912, Vero8405). The fastening together of the top and bottom makes for a small but relatively secure costume for active sports.
Another silhouette that emerges as a result is the combination of the slide-side halter with the "slide" culotte, more typically called the adjustable. Slide casings now let the wearer adjust everything (NYC8501, Vero8701). In its waining days the slide-side will even be comboed with montante (KH9016).
The slide-side provides a great deal of flexability in different ties and reties of the soutien-gorge. It may be reformed into bandeau (WB8401, CI8501, CI8502), or worn so the slides are between the breasts, instead of to the sides (RL9171), and repositioned so that it becomes a traditional string halter. Indeed, this multiple style is sometimes advertised as a feature.
The Maillot Question
Although the slide-side, when passed through the brief does acquire the aspect of a one-piece, or maillot, we leave that aspect of it as a comment and do not classify this among the maillot species. When the connection is permanent, the species is indeed maillot and called a miokini or maillot cross-tension. But the slide-side retains the flexibility of either connecting to the brief or not.
Slide-side halter and v-kini.