I got quite excited when I saw the photos of the Spring/Summer 2015 catwalk shows just recently. There was one single trend that stood out for me and so many designers had latched onto it. Yes, it’s Seventies revival!!
Now, I grew up in the 70s and 80s, so neither are styles I tend to wear. Back in the 90s I randomly shared a taxi with Caryn Franklin of The Clothes Show fame and we chatted about vintage (as you do!). She said to me “if you did it the first time around, then you’re too old to do it when it comes back into fashion!” This, bizarrely, has stayed with me my whole life and definitely a motto I have stuck to. However, I still very much appreciate the styles of this time and love what the designers of today have come up with. And they certainly seem to have embraced just about every trend that occurred during the decade that style forgot.
Seventies Revival: Denim
One of the stand out looks of the Seventies Revival is the Bay City Rollers denim! Trousers and dungarees are cut above the ankle, have a slightly more stylish flair to them than the originals but the stripey socks are ever present. Thankfully, there’s no tartan in sight!
Seventies Revival: Suede
Suede was huge in the 70s and I remember my mum wearing a lot of it during the whole decade. She had most of her garments made for her (lucky thing!) and I still have her suede emerald green top coat which is just stunning. Thankfully it is late 60s/early 70s before the oversized collars came into fashion!
On the catwalk suede was used to create entire garments as well as complete outfits. Colours were kept earthy with hues of browns, greens and burgundies and often blocks of colour were patchworked together to form A-line skirts and straight cut coats.
Seventies Revival: Patchwork
Patchwork was a leftover from the hippies of the late 60s. Using pieces of cloth from old clothes to make new ones was all about sustainability and not buying into the masses. People could create their own unique looks with clashing colours and fabrics. Of course, this then progressed into the high street and so was mass produced for everyone, one thing the hippies hated.
Designers like Tommy Hilfiger, Saint Laurent and Gucci showed entire outfits made in denim patchwork or colourful clashing luxe fabrics that were teamed with loose hanging bohemian hairstyles to create a true 70s look.
Seventies Revival: Psychedelic Prints
House of Holland
Paul & Joe
Again, psychedelic prints and flower power were brought into mainstream 70s fashions from the end of 60s and both had a big association with the hippy movement. Loud clashing colours and swirling designs were inspired by the experiences of altered states of consciousness brought on my popular drugs at the time, including LSD.
These prints appeared on most catwalks as flowing bohemian dresses, peasant blouses, mini dresses and even complete trouser suits with bell-bottoms.
Seventies Revival: Flares
Who doesn’t love flares? They epitomise the 1970s and it’s the first thing everyone mentions when asked to describe the fashions of the era. I had two amazing pairs of flares when I was a child that I remember fondly. They were exactly the same except one was navy blue and the other was a proper 70s brown. The fabric was the ever-practical polyester, they had a raised seam down the front and back of each leg and they had an elasticated waistband! Yes, seventies overload.
There was an abundance of flares in the SS15 designer shows and covered practially all of the different trends of the eras from glam rock to the trouser suit and from hippy chic even to the handmade looks of crochet and macrame.
Seventies Revival: Native American
Paul & Joe
The Navajo influence was another follow on from the hippy culture. It emerged during a time of peace and love and the flower children of America felt an affinity with the native people of their country. Celebrities like Cher, who is part Cherokee, integrated elements of native American jewellery, embroidery and fabric into their own styles which created a wave of interest in the trend back in the mid-70s.
Classic native American fabrics of suede and fur appeared often in the catwalk shows, as well as traditional beadwork and trademark fringing. These were teamed with suede moccasins, gladiator sandals and silver and turquoise jewellery.
So what do you think of the Seventies Revival? Would you wear any of these Seventies inspired outfits?