Fashion of the 1970s

The decade began with a continuation of the hippie look from the 1960s. Jeans remained frayed, and the Tie dye was still popular. In the autumn of 1970, ankle length dresses called maxis made a brief appearance. These were topped by fitted coats of the same length. Tunics and Indian fabrics continued to be popular. Jeans waistlines lowered to 4 inches or even less as “hip huggers” with “bell-bottoms” became the height of denim fashion. Altering the appearance of jeans with bleach and tie-dye techniques, embroidery, decorative patches, and metal studs was popular as well. Tight-ftting ribbed tops were worn by both men and women. Polyester “doubleknit” fabric was coming into its own, with many clothing items for men and women being produced in this modern easy-care fabric. In 1971, extremely brief, tight-fitting shorts, called hot pants, were a fashion craze for girls and young women. By the mid-Seventies, as the economy improved, silhouettes narrowed, and hemlines dropped again from mini skirt to just below the knee, and later to midi (mid-calf length).1970s1

In Britain and the urban United States, from 1972-1974, fashions were inspired by extravagantly-dressed glam rock stars such as David Bowie and Roxy Music. Glitter was in vogue. Women wore high-waisted, flared satin trousers or denims, the latter usually decorated with rhinestones, tight lurex halter tops, bright lamé or antique velvet dresses, whose hemlines normally ended just below the knee, satin hot pants, sequined bra tops, and occasionally they wore ostrich- feather boas draped over their shoulders or turbans on their heads. The 1930s and 1940s look was also popular, and many women bought their clothes at second-hand shops. The short, imitaion rabbit-fur jacket was a hot fashion item during this period. Make-up was garish and glittery, with eyebrows thinly plucked. Bianca Jagger, who often used an ebony walking stick, wore peacock-feathers in her cloche hats, green sequined shoes, transparent blouses, and carried an ivory cigarette- holder, was a fashion icon. The men often wore lamé suits, silver astronaut-style outfits, wide-legged denims, and rhinestone-studded shirts. Their hair was long and softly layered, or spiky and sometimes multi-coloured.70s


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