Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Skinny -- The Bohemian 70s

We Blackbirds are always trying to educate ourselves about the way things were in the world back in the day -- partially because we are naturally inquisitive people, but mainly because we want to know what the world was like when people wore Bakelite brooches and went to the movies to see Doris Day on the big screen.  Both of us are drawn to the 1930s through the early 1960s -- the eras of the movies we grew up watching.  We've appreciated the 1970s, but it's never been our thing.  (I'm speaking strictly junk-wise and clothing-wise -- we've always loved the music!)

I can honestly say our first real moment of oohs and aahs for 1970s design was when we saw the 1974 movie For Pete's Sake with Barbra Streisand.  We had seen seventies (and loved it) before, even with 1972's What's Up, Doc? (see Barbra above, cute as a button), but we had never really had that real AHA! moment.  With the awesome apartment in Pete's, it was a big AHA!  Wish I could show you pics of the apartment, but alas, I cannot find any online.  Try to catch the movie when it comes on TCM.  You'll love it; it's hilarious.

So, when we did the last window at the antique mall, we happened upon some Seventeen magazines from the late 60s through the early 70s.  They were cheap; we decided we needed them.  We flipped through them last night, and I can honestly say, I have a new love for 1970s fashion.

I don't like all of it -- there's a lot of bad -- but what I do like, I love.  I thought, "Hey, I'll do this week's Skinny post on some of the 70s fashion we like!"  However, when I started researching this blog, I couldn't find any photos.  I found new photos made to look vintage.  I found pictures of sewing patterns from the 70s.  But no real fashion shots.

So, dear readers, I decided to share with you some of the photos from the fashion spread that spoke to me the most.  From Seventeen magazine, May 1971. Quoted excerpts are from the spread.  Enjoy!

Gay Gibson dress, photo by Ray Kellman

"A new karma's coming -- soft, blowy folkthings in fabrics with peasant or palace vibrations.  Get into madras, tie-dyes, complex weaves or knits -- many are still made with ancient skills."

By Alexa from Sunny California, photo by Ray Kellman
By Alexa from Sunny California, photo by Ray Kellman

"Block prints from India are prized for their neat patterns and soft colors.  These American versions pick up the look and let you make it yours."

Dress by No Comment, photo by Joseph Santoro

"Here's how to go east with the ease of a swami.  Make a few passes over a marvelous caftan pattern.  Cut it out in kaleidoscopic print with a proud Afro-Indian heritage.  Sew it up, put it on -- and watch your universe expand."

McCall's sewing pattern 2896, Singer dress panels, photo by Joseph Santoro
McCall's sewing pattern 2896, Singer sewing panels, photo by Joseph Santoro

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