Its been over a year since the last "Fashion elements" post. I know! I'm terrible!! But there's a lot to research and now I can finally give you a new design element that I've been enjoying noticing since watching Bonnie and Clyde and reading the "Sixties Fashion" book.
The 1930s gave the 60s a lot of inspiration in the mid to late 60s, via films and designers who looked to the past for inspiration from the heros and characters that drove folk lore and adorned the screens during the dark depression era. So many films were produced in that period, that one would think there was no depression in LA, but there surely was and the films were often used as an escape from real life for everyday people. The fantasy of those films and outlaws like Bonnie and Clyde remained so ingrained in peoples memories that it was bound to repeat itself at some point.
The story of Bonnie and Clyde was a perfect segue for the 30s to introduce itself to the 60s. One of things that really drove the popularity of this film in 1967 was the fashions and of course fantastical story line of Bonnie and Clyde.
So popular was the films fashion that designers such as Yves Saint Laurent Norman Norell both designed collections based of Bonnie's outfits as played by Faye Dunaway
The styling of the film, became a strong influence behind the return of sweater coats, midi skirts, gangster style striped suiting, lace up shoes and chiffon dinner dresses with bows and scarves at the throat for Autumn 1967
|Brigitte Bardot in a promotional still for the Bonnie and Clyde duetwith Serge Gainsberg|
It was reported in Life January 1968 that Fay Dunaway had done for the beret what Bardot had done for the bikini.
Interestingly, the film also spawned a sultry duet between Bardot and Serge Gainsberg in 1968.
Elements of 1930s fashion had popped up before, but it had taken the impact of the film to bring about a new blend of the relaxed 1930s look with the leggy swinging 60s.
|Junge Mode Burda International 1967|
|Léacril knitting fashion, ELLE (France) November 1968|
|Yves Saint Laurent's 1930s Nostalgic style Spring 1968|
|Bonnie and Clyde brand of shoes, Canada, Spring 1969|
|Gangster Striped suite by Spanish designer Mir, Spring 1968|
In France, young women were reportedly storming the boutiques for longer skirts after the film debuted there in Janurary 1968, confusing the press with which skirt length was the most popular. Was it the mini or the midi? Hemlines once again started to shift about, allowing designers and women the chance to choose their preferred hemline depending on their mood.
|Colleen Corby and others modelling for Bobbie Brooks|
|A 1930's tennis style dress. Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Nova, April 1968|
A perfect example of the trend. Berets, knee socks, loose cardigans, ties and two tone shoes
|The many looks of Bobbie Brooks, Avenue (Dutch) November 1968|
On the more glamorous side of things, the golden age of Hollywood also served as inspiration for designers such as Ossie Clark and Barbara Hulanicki
|Biba fashion advertisement illustrated by Kasia Charko, Summer 1974|
Both Barbara and Ossie were well known for their use of luxurious fabrics, bias cut gowns and accessorising with furs and bangles, and styling their models with tight curls and bow lips.
|Clockwise from top left: Biba kimono sleeve dressing gown; Biba grid print coat; Biba striped lurex maxi dress; Biba ruched sleeve dress|
|Detail of Biba mail order catalogue 1968-9|
The 1930s revival appealed to both city women with cash to spend and suburban teenage girls shopping at their local JC Penny's. It was both sultry and alluring, but also safe and trendy with a hint of danger, perfect for women and girls on the cusp of a gender revolution.
I wonder what films will influence fashion in the coming years? The recent revival of The Great Gatsby drove a small trend a few years back, but with fashion being the way it is, was a mere blimp compared to the great influence the 30s revival had on 60s fashion