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For an idyll in the islands

The greatest attraction in the Caribbean is the water—warm, crystal, calm. It welcomes swimmers and snorkelers who explore the fantastic reefs and sun on the secluded beaches which scallop every little island. Sailing through the Virgin Islands, as outlined by Carleton Mitchell (see pages 60-66), is one enchanting way to see the natural beauties of the Caribbean. On these five pages are new resort clothes designed for just such an idyll on, alongside and in the water, with occasional side trips ashore for sightseeing and night life.

Skin-diving suits at Saber Reef are of unconfining wool or elastic knits. Kate Milner's is full-fashioned Ban-Lon-and-rubber two-piece ($15, Darlene: Saks Fifth Avenue; Kleinert's petal cap, $6); Frank O'Connor's, hound's-tooth-check wool ($9, Westwood: Bullock's).

The beach set of trunks and shirt is the gentleman's approach to swim wear this winter. Swim trunks are briefer, though more conservative than the male bikini appearing on European beaches. At St. John's Caneel Bay, Eric Winter (with guitar) wears multicolored madras swim trunks and matching shirt (trunks $10, shirt $11, F. A. MacCluer: Gidding's, Cincinnati; I. Magnin). Art Maier (in the background) tops belted stretch trunks with neatly piped black terry jacket (trunks $6, jacket $9, Catalina).

The knitted bikini is the swimmer's answer for snorkeling and/or sunbathing on a rubber raft. Mrs. John C. Lilly wears a red wool knit with pearl buttons ($25, Rudi Gernreich for Westwood: Saks Fifth Avenue) for paddling around reefs at Honeymoon Beach on St. Thomas.

Knitted cottons for sailing are: Gun Agell's safari shirt ($10) and two-piece swimsuit ($15, both Geist & Geist: J. W. Robinson); Carolyn Maier's shorts with hooded jacket ($6 each, Aileen: Macy's, New York). Art's windbreaker has arm vents ($17, Mighty-Mac: Jordan Marsh).

Big year for native fabrics

Bigger than ever in this winter resort season is Indian madras. Now a perennial, madras dyed in muted colors peculiar to India's vegetable dyes, came into this hemisphere by way of the Caribbean (SI, Jan. 23, 1956) and is now dominant in all caregories of resort apparel—slacks, shorts, shirts, dresses, dinner jackets, at-home pajamas, ties, cummerbunds, belts, even shoes and ditty bags for sailboats. It has paved the way for other fabrics with a similar rough-crafted look: batiks in brilliant Javanese and African prints are one example; sturdy work fabrics such as duck, denim and ticking are others. Shown here in Charlotte Amalie are shore clothes, for socializing or spectating at the Go-Kart races. They will be as much at home on northern shores this summer.

New jackets are (left) Dacron-and-cotton gingham ($37.50, Haspel: Chipp, Inc.) and Paul Simpson's duck blazer piped with hemp ($35, Cricketeer: Burdine's Hathaway shirt, $9).

Popular pants at Go-Kart races are batik and madras. Man's batik pants at left, also shown close up at right ($18.50, Corbin: Paul Stuart), are worn with ecru knitted shirt ($13, Fashion Hill). Girl's long pants are batik and madras ($16 each, Gordon-Ford); man's are madras ($18, Gutstein-Tuck). Blazer ($15) teams with shorts ($8, White Stag), madras cap from Gobbi.

Ticking day dress with matching pants is worn by Elisabeth Lilly for marketing on St. Thomas ($49, Tina Leser: Harold's, Minneapolis; Neiman-Marcus). Hemp shopping bag is from Park Lane ($5).

Madras costume pairs sheath ($23), trench coat ($70, Polly Hornburg for Calypso: Pearl Lehrer, Hewlett, L.I.; Leigh, Ltd., Kenilworth, Ill.). Mules are Capezio's.

Hostess pajamas worn by Gun Agell at Harbor View, on Frenchman's Hill on St. Thomas, are made of Galey & Lord's nonbleed version of madras ($30, Pembroke Squires for Cabana: Burdine's, Henri Bendel).

Silk for evening

Even as native fabrics dominate the daytime resort scene, so do elegant silks characterize dress for evening. During a period when styling is simple and familiar, fabric interest is paramount, and silks in natural golden-beiges and brilliant prints have taken over. Men's jackets for evening are cut like sport jackets but have such distinctive textures as raw India silk. The newest fabric in men's sport jackets, however, is a summer mesh that is made in Italy and is ventilated by thousands of tiny holes.

Silk-chiffon shirtwaist printed in gold with ti leaves ($110, B. H. Wragge: Bonwit Teller, New York; I. Magnin), and golden Indian-inspired bib and bracelets (Hattie Carnegie) are worn by Gun Agell, shown with husband Bertil at Fortuna sugar plantation ruins on St. Thomas. His raw silk jacket is natural golden-beige ($65, Chester Laurie). Gun's silk crepe pumps match her dress ($25, Margaret Jerrold).

At sundown at harbor view Carolyn Maier wears a shirtwaist of rose-printed silk ($99.50) and a braid-bound cashmere sweater ($70, Clare Potter: Lord & Taylor). Gold jewelry is by Monet; lizard-trimmed pumps, Capezio. Art's white mesh jacket, coolest on St. Thomas ($30, Mighty-Mac: Joseph Horne, Pittsburgh), is worn with tropical worsted slacks ($30, Daks: Porter's, New Orleans), U.S. Rubber shoes.