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Decades of Fashion: The 1960s

Decades of Fashion

The 1960s saw fashion evolve and diversify at a faster pace than ever before, revolutionary changes in society were reflected in the emergence of new trends and silhouettes.

With the introduction of the contraceptive pill, the sexual liberation of women was a major development in society, and so hemlines began to rise. Mary Quant’s A-line mini skirt became the look to be seen in, especially teamed with brightly coloured tights, knee high go-go boots and over-sized false lashes – the look that Twiggy became known for.

Others looked to Jackie Kennedy for inspiration, copying her minimalist shift dresses, box jackets and pill box hats. The Space Race gripped the world and as a result fashion designers experimented with futuristic shapes and metallic fabrics. Whilst some kept it simple with a monochrome palette, others went all out and clashed bold colours and psychedelic prints.

Carnaby Street in London was viewed as the centre of the swinging sixties and it was here that the Mod look took off, heavily influenced by the likes of The Who and The Small Faces. Clean, sharp, tailored lines topped off with an army parka coat was the typical look, contrasting with the look of their rivals, the Rockers who still sported 1950s style threads.

As the decade progressed and the hippy movement emerged, a much more laid-back bohemian style developed. Never before had fashion been so expressive of the individual’s lifestyle, musical tastes and social and political beliefs.

Rebecca McCosh
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