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1960s vintage clothing

September 1, 2015

Much like today, the Sixties were a very mixed period in fashion. Various trends that crop up in 1960s vintage clothing reflect the influences of the decade: futuristic space suits blended with seaside chic of Riviera and Cannes, whereas pastel dolly dresses and block-coloured Mod fashion slowly gave way to Op Art, psychedelic or hippy fashion that matured throughout the decade.

1960s vintage clothing styles

Bob Richardson for French Vogue 1968

Bob Richardson for French Vogue 1968

1960s vintage clothing-Designers & models

Designers such as Patou, Courreges and Cardin dressed the decade’s fashion muses – Penelope Tree, Twiggy, Jean Shrimpton – and often the glamorous film stars as well, but the predominant fashions came from the streets and seaside resorts, where youthfully thrown-together look developed in parallel with the cool music scene.

Penelope Tree by Richard Avedon 1968

Penelope Tree by Richard Avedon 1968

1960s vintage clothing-Pastel Dollies

The early swinging 60s started off with a cute pastel look worn by the teenage models who often looked like little cut-out dollies. All eyelashes and legs, insect-thin and googly-eyed, this look was best carried off by the young Mods and accessorized with fresh or plastic flowers, shiny bracelets, knee-high white socks and flat Dollies shoes.

1960s doll look

1960s doll look

 

60s girls shoes - Dollies

60s girls shoes – Dollies

 

Cute as a daisy!

Cute as a daisy!

 

Bob Richardson for French Vogue

Bob Richardson for French Vogue

 

Floral version of Clockwork Orange

Floral version of Clockwork Orange

1960s vintage clothing-Carnaby Street Mods

Carnaby Street in London is one of the key locations where it all happened for the 1960s vintage clothing: both in boutiques and on the street, boldly patterned and colour-blocked little outfits spoke eloquently of freshness and carefree attitudes.

Carnaby Street in the 60s

Carnaby Street in the 60s

 

Mods in stripes

Mods in stripes

 

1960s-Mod colour blocks

Mod colour blocks

 

1960s vintage clothing was all about streamlined looks: hair was cropped short, or worn long with a short stack on the back, which eventually gave way to a full-fledged bouffant hairstyle.

1960s vintage clothing-60s Raincoats Were The Best!

Making London rain fashionable in the 1960s

Making London rain fashionable

 

Meanwhile, someone discovered the rain! Up until this point, fashion ignored the rain – after all, it only happened to those that couldn’t afford to hop into Bentleys or Black cabs, or to be whisked off by racing chariots.

Mod fashion not only discovered the rain but also provided the cutest, most cheerful raincoats to be worn on gloomy days, so every little Mod beamed like a lighthouse in drab English weather. You will be pleased to know that Blade Runner did not patent the iconic transparent raincoat – the Mods (or rather Andre Courreges) did.

Ready for rain and alien invasion!

Ready for rain and alien invasion!

 

1960s inspired raincoat

1960s inspired raincoat

 

Pierre Cardin experienced alien abduction during the 1960s

Pierre Cardin experienced alien abduction during the 1960s

 

Rainsuit clearly inspired by geckos

Rainsuit clearly inspired by geckos

Geometric Patterns and the Influence of Op Art

Another firm mainstay of the 1960s vintage clothing are the geometric patterns, black and white or full-blown colour. Inspired by the Op Art of the 60s and owning a great deal to the artists such as Bridget Riley or Henry Moore, the designers of the 60s went mad with sculptural shapes, curves, cuts and eye-popping hypnotic patterns.

Jean Shrimpton in Bridget Riley inspired dress, April 1965

Jean Shrimpton in Bridget Riley inspired dress, April 1965

 

Bridget Riley, Loss (1964)

Bridget Riley, Loss (1964)

 

Bridget Riley, Movement in Squares (1961)

Bridget Riley, Movement in Squares (1961)

 

1960s Mod Shades

Mod Shades

 

Peggy Moffit dressed in Rudi Gernreich

Peggy Moffit dressed in Rudi Gernreich designs

 

1960s Geometric pattern and eyelashes

Geometric pattern and eyelashes

 

Peggy Moffit - 1960s

Peggy Moffit

 

Young Bridget Riley in 1961

A young Bridget Riley in 1961

 

Wearable Op Art

Wearable Op Art

1960s vintage clothing-Sculptural Forms in 60s Fashion

Andre Courreges and Pierre Cardin explored the textures of new materials and played with scale and proportion, completely abandoning the body silhouette and creating some deliciously exciting blobs and curves that were simultaneously wildly futuristic and playfully childlike. These strange sculptural shapes enhanced the frail femininity of the models that wore them.

Possibly Henry Moore inspired Andre Courreges design

Possibly Henry Moore inspired Andre Courreges design

 

Reclining woman by Henry Moore (1951)

Reclining woman by Henry Moore (1951)

 

Women-thermometers by Pierre Cardin

Women-thermometers by Pierre Cardin

 

Barbara Hepworth, Two Figures (Menhirs)

Barbara Hepworth, Two Figures (Menhirs)

 

Futuristic fashion that resembles Oval With Points by Moore

Futuristic fashion that resembles Oval With Points by Moore

 

Working model for Oval With Points by Henry Moore (1968-69)

Working model for Oval With Points by Henry Moore (1968-69)

 

Pierre Cardin 1960s

Pierre Cardin 1960s

 

 Cardin's sculptural shapes-1960s

Cardin’s sculptural shapes

 

David Bailey for Pierre Cardin spring 1968

David Bailey for Pierre Cardin spring 1968

 

Cardin FW 65-66 photo Ghislain Broulard 1966

Cardin FW 65-66 photo Ghislain Broulard 1966

 

Op Art dress in front of a Mondrianesque panel

Op Art dress in front of a Mondrianesque panel

 

However, patterns in colour is what made 1960s vintage clothing so covetable. The bolder the better, worn with tall boots or flat dolly shoes in patent leather, plastic and space-age accessories, enamelled jewellery, chain mail or quilted handbags and short short short! Unless of course you went for a flowing floor-length look.

In fact, so much has to be said about 1960s vintage clothing and colour that it requires a section of its own! Stay tuned.

Pierre Cardin colour layering

Pierre Cardin colour layering

 

Darth Wader Spring Summer 1965

Darth Vader Spring Summer 1965

 

Op Art dress

Op Art dress

 

Flash! Geometry! Super!

Flash! Geometry! Super!

 

Read in depth about 1960s fashions

 

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