The 1970s was an exciting period in design culture. Hippie influences followed on from the 60s and the emergence of punk rock and disco were key to the era. An overflow in pattern clashes and textures were seen not only on the streets in personal attire but also in the household furnishing. In the present day designers look back on the era for inspiration to use in there works and we have seen the re emergence of textures and 70 style grace the catwalks of 2012/2013.
Transitioning from 1960s to 1970s
Originally arising in the mid 1960s, hippie subculture prevailed on a lesser scale throughout the 1970's influencing music, television, literature and the arts. Many of the defining characteristics impacted greatly on the designs of the time and later, inadvertently, in the present. (Hislop, K. and Lutyens, D. (2012)(pp.23-24)
The Hippie fashion was daring and varied, reflecting the social drama of the time. The fashion consisted of a disorderly style that often challenged the gender differences of that time. Flared jeans and long untamed hair were popular with both women and men. (HEATHCOTE, D. & BARR, S. 2005. pp. 17-18) The feminist movement dictated that women abandoned their bras and fabricated self-made clothes. In defiance of the corporate culture and in support of this movement, many women chose to do so. In Sydney, Australia the hippie culture was widely embraced by the “beachsiders” whose women adorned cheese-cloth tops and strappy wedged sandals. For men it was wide colourful ties with oversized, flapping collars.
The 60s saw the introduction of television to Australia and the 70s brought about the colour television, exposing Australia to American shows. Unlike today where trending from fashion blogs is the norm and Models are our inspiration, in the 1970s television film and music was the influence (Brunning, B. 2012 pp.176). Many designers gained inspiration from shows such as “Charlies Angels”, which popularised flare jeans and abundant flowing hairstyles. The music industry was booming with live bands coming to Australia more frequently an increase in band 'cult' followings was seen. Bands were idolised and so were their fashions. In the modern times we idolize musicians and consider them fashion icons; Lady GaGa being a prime example.
As any fashion fad the Hippie culture soon dissipated and Disco emerged, followed by Punk making these two movements the prominent fashion influences.
Women in the 1970s
Monumentally the 70s was a remunerable era in fashion history, as it was a time where females began purchasing clothing for various activities and occasions in their lives, including home, office, formal and casual wear. Unlike the average stay at home housewives of the previous decades, women of the ‘70s were gaining part time and full time employment more than ever before.
Because everyday life was moving faster than ever, women were sewing their clothing less and less. Rather, they purchased their ‘70s dresses ready-made at department stores and from catalogues. *With ready-made clothing becoming so much more popular, trends came and went with faster speeds.
The influences in the lively era included the disco party scene which slowly made its way into more mainstream fashion, resulting in making items such as platform wedges, glitter and just about anything polyester must have items both on and off the dance floor.
External Influences on the 1970’s
The 1970s was a free spirited time not only of fashion revolution but political, cultural, social and economic change too. These changes while considered normal by today’s standards had major influential shifts on the styles and the lives of the modern ‘70s woman*. After the ‘70s, fashion for woman has continued to be open-minded, creative and free.
Then and Now
Clothing from the 70’s era in today’s society has experienced a revival in modern fashion because quite a