The 70s was full of social changes largely influenced by new fashion, catwalks and music. The style of clothing that dominated at the beginning of this time was hippie, very characteristic of the 60s. Later, the new vintage fashion look came in with bright and fun colours, evening dresses, and afro hair styles that inspired a retro look as well as a new style to wear called Disco.
Next, we tell you all about the history of fashion from the 70s, its characteristics and the icons that set trends with their outfits. Prepare to be inspired!
History of fashion from the 70s
The 70s represented freedom in fashion and popular clothing. This was characterised mainly by being diverse and daring, mixing the style of the hippie movement with more bohemian and retro clothing during the decade.
The pop and psychedelic style saw men and women wear bright and colourful prints that also predominated in the 60s. Long hair with volume and the Afro style was the new look for men and women of all races. This is also when many began to wear their hair in a perm.
The early 70s was also the time when unisex beauty salons, flared pants and the new platform shoes appeared for both men and women.
Characteristics and trends of the 70s
The fashion of the 70s for Women
- Colours: bright colours, retro and synthetic fabrics were big trends in 70s clothing. There was also a new demand for ethnic designs and the use of sequins which helped create the disco dress fro women to wear.
- Skirts: vintage miniskirts, denim, plaid and those with striking and colourful prints were the most popular vintage and retro styles.
- Trousers : In the early 1970s, women wore high-waisted, flared trousers to create a long, slim silhouette. However, at the end of the decade, the trend that prevailed was the use of tight trousers and satin fabrics, marking the beginning of a punk style that began in the following decade.
- Variety of clothing: the 70s were characterised by the fact that there were no rules in fashion, hence its great diversity from a hippie style in its beginnings, through the use of ethnic clothing, oriental blouses, tunics, vests, sleeveless dresses, ornaments with sequins, even crochet swimsuits.
- Footwear: platform shoes in bright colours were the popular image. Many women returned to using long boots that became a trend at the end of the decade.
- Hairstyles and makeup: in terms of hair, tousled curls and afro were in as well as cuts with a fringe or layers. Makeup took on a look with more intense lip tones, long eyelashes and shadows that brought depth to the look.
- Accessories: when it comes to fashion trends, accessories played a very important role in the 70s. The most used were large glasses, as well as accessories from Native American tribes.
Men's 70s Fashion
- Shirts: shirts with wide necks or "v" cuts were most common, often with printed fabrics in polyester for the disco look and velvet in retro dress.
- Trousers: at the beginning of the decade, wide-boot cut trousers were a hit, however, at the end of this period, they become tight again.
- Suits: the use of formal suits continued, but tracksuits and more sporty looks also became a very fashionable way to dress.
- Hairstyles and accessories: long hair and sideburns were the fashion among men. As for accessories, chains with ostentatious medallions became one of the most popular items to wear along with hats.
In the world of cinema and entertainment, personalities who set trends in fashion in the 70s stood out with their looks such as Priscilla Presley, Anita Pallenberg, Brigitte Bardot and Françoise Hardy, among others.
With regard to designers and fashion firms, during this time the works of Armani or Balenciaga, Versace and Vivienne Westwood stood out.
UK fashion in the 70s
In the UK the fashion change of the 70s was also felt, a time of psychedelic designs, flares, style and sequin tops and dresses were all the rage.
In this period, printed designs, lines, flowers and bright colours were plentiful. Among women trousers were worn more, unisex bags and sandals or platform shoes also became popular.
During the 70s the price of fabrics fell and casual fashion for men prevailed among the younger population, who were looking for an innovative and daring style. The era of polyester began, which only required washing and dressing, as well as the use of men's trousers with wide boots, patterned shirts, wide or "V" necks and platform shoes.