• Emma (My Vintage)

1960s Dresses - An Era of Change



These days we're much more open to bold fashion choices and unique and individual items, but when it comes to the 1960s it really was an era that broke through rules and barriers both in fashion and music. After the 1950s where it was all about shape and femininity, the 1960s took us in a completely different direction and really helped people to be bolder and more confident in their fashion choices. There was a surge of androgyny in women's fashion as well as a whole new range of materials to work with, including plastic and new man-made fabrics.


Shaping the Fashion Industry

When you look back upon the history of fashion it is clear to see that the 1960s shaped most of what we are used to seeing today. Even though not all trends from today take their inspiration from this era, it was these years that bought forward the chance to be different and for women to stand out from the crowd when it comes to their fashion choices.


One of the boldest fashion developments of the 1960s was the invention of the mini skirt. In 1964, Mary Quant raised the hemline of her designs a few inches above the knee and the mini was born! There were several pioneers of this style at the time, but Quant is accredited by many as the inventor of this controversial and iconic change in hemlines, one that we still see regularly in fashion today. Often worn with brightly coloured tights, Quant's minis embodied a whole new era of women's liberation.



Alternatives to 1960s Dresses

Although 1960s dresses were popular, this decade actually gave women much more to choose from - which helped to ensure that there was something for everyone. At the start of the 1960s, Jackie Kennedy helped to make female suits popular and this bought forward a trend of more tailored clothing.


As well as creating and launching the mini skirt, Mary Quant was also responsible for the popularity of hot pants in the 1960s. According to Quant, these provocative micro shorts "sold faster than (they) could make them"


She also designed trousers that borrowed from classic men's tailoring, often using tweeds and Victorian influences. These cutting edge styles were off the peg, easy to wear and further promoted female independence and equality. Fashion was becoming more politically and socially representative than in previous decades.


Big, Bold and Kooky

If you are looking for 1960s fancy dress fashion then it's definitely time to go big or go home! Making more exaggerated choices is the best way to create a head turning and uber 60s look. Even everyday fashion in the 60s was more bold and out there than any other decade. The element of space travel was a massive inspiration for clothing of this time, we're talking silver space boots, big glasses and even PVC clothing and accessories to really make a statement. Clothing wasn't the only OTT thing about fashion of this time - it was also about big hair, huge false eye lashes and bold make up, to finish the look off perfectly.



A Modern Twist

When it comes to 1960s fashion it is super easy to give a little nod to this era and still dress in a modern style. Towards the end of the 1960s we saw the culture of love come into play and with it, the boho hippy era. These days bold prints are definitely in fashion so you can get away with bold floral or geometric patterns in more modern cuts if you want to just give a subtle nudge towards the fashion of the 60s.


1960s fashion was all about self confidence and being bold in your choices, which is very similar to the way fashion is formed today, so combining the two is a perfect combination for 2020. Creating a look that is totally individual to you, encapsulating modern trends and still giving a salute to the most boldly iconic fashion decade of the 20th Century.


Until next time

Emma x



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