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Style Facts: Fashion in the 70’s

Every now and then, bits of style from a long gone era reappear in contemporary fashion. Distinctive details that echo previous designs emerge in various reinvented cuts. In this blog, we pay homage to the influential 1970’s, when men weren’t cool enough if they didn’t have their bell bottoms on! Every self-confessed fashionista should have good knowledge on past fashion trends – after all, everything modern and genuine always carry with them a part of the past.

Hippie dressing popularized in the previous decade of the 1960’s lingered on. Frayed jeans, Mexican peasant blouses, miniskirts and maxi dresses were amongst the favorites. The hot pants, which were tight fitting and extremely short shorts, soon took center stage and was extensively worn by young women. Even flight attendants from prestigious airline companies donned the hot pants as their uniform!

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Bellbottoms were a hit for both men and ladies throughout the decade. We say that the 70’s decade was generally a liberating time for women because they dressed in whatever they felt like – there were practically no restrictions. If they wanted to cover up their skin, they chose dresses or bellbottom trousers paired with long sleeved shirts but if they wanted to flaunt, they went for hot pants or mini dresses. The 70’s also saw the birth of the one-piece maillot swimsuit, made famous by then-woman of the hour and American sex symbol Farrah Fawcett. Even her hairstyle had a global impact!

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Another noteworthy style was the jersey wrap dress, first designed by Diane Von Furstenberg in the late 1970’s. A great part of her career is credited to the success of the wrap dress, a classic and timeless cut that is still very much visible today. Diane made it to the Newsweek cover in 1976 and of course, she wore the wrap dress! The flattering, easy-to-wear design was a tremendous hit and pretty soon, other versions of the dress began to flood the racks. Now an iconic symbol, the DVF wrap dress remains to be a staple in every woman’s wardrobe.

 

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Another designer who flourished during the 70’s was Halston. Bianca Jagger, wife of rock star icon Mick Jagger, placed the signature Halston evening dresses on the map. Jane Birkin was also a name to reckon, her denim line was as popular as the one-shoulder Halston dress and the DVF wrap dress! It was also during that time that she invented the first Birkin bag. Jewelry and accessories during this era were quite simple, women often wore small to large-sized metal hoop earrings, bangles, delicate chains and long pendant necklaces.

The disco scene in the 70’s was huge! Perhaps the biggest fashion statements of the decade belonged to the disco lovers themselves. John Travolta’s Saturday Night Fever had a staunch following, and anyone who dressed like him at the disco became instantly favorable. Under strobe lights and mirrored balls, the ladies glowed in metallic stretch disco pants and bandeau tops, halter jumpsuits and sequined pieces – think ABBA! Disco wear, however, was not acceptable as day wear – it would have been too garish to walk around in a gilded get-up!

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The caftan dress is one of my favorite 70’s designs! It’s actually a loose tunic dress with long, exaggerated sleeves that can be worn with a belt at the waist or hips. Many variations of the caftan have been made in the past years, proof that it never gets outdated! Though a caftan dress can make a woman look all too covered up, it can still look sexy and glamorous if worn the right way. Embellished caftans can even pass as evening wear – celebrities have worn it on the red carpet, too! Celebrity stylist Rachel Zoe has caught up with the caftan craze, and she does have an unforgettable flair for fashion!

 

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Needless to say, the 70’s style remains to be an influential and integral part of fashion until the present day. Doing a 70’s inspired outfit is still trendy, some cuts (DVF’s wrap dress, for instance) are even considered as classics. But when gearing for that 70’s look, steer clear of the metallics from the disco mania unless you’re heading to a costume party! Here are two easy and updated 70’s ensembles to help you get started! And if you’re budget challenged, you’d be thrilled of the price tags, too!

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  1. Peacock Embroidered Hem Dress, River Island
  2. Golden Embrace Cuff, Ohmyfashh
  3. Gold-tone Tinted Aviator Sunglasses, River Island
  4. Blonde Ambition Nenita Sandal, Nordstrom

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  1. Round Sunnies in Black, Ohmyfashh
  2. Anne Klein Wide Hoop Earrings, Nordstrom
  3. Michael Kors Camilla Sandals, Nordstrom
  4. Women’s Long Sleeved Wrap Dress, Old Navy

Fashionista, got something on your mind? Leave a comment!