Wow! Today we are buzzing with 1970s excitement, here at Henry Roth HQ. What a decade! The 1970s were such an exciting time for fashion–with dressing becoming increasingly individualistic, fashion-forward and unique. Indeed, many of the silhouettes still so popular today were born out of this decade: think tailored Yves Saint Laurent pant suits, grecian styled dresses, and disco-esque clothing. The 1970s were also the years in which bridal dressing became a business, with the debut of bridal magazines and coveted bridal designers.
The seventies represented the first true fashion trends that came straight from the streets rather than the undercurrents of designer propaganda. This is also the first time in history that women’s pant suits were accepted as stylish day, evening and–gasp!–even bridal wear, with one of the decade’s most famous brides, Bianca Jagger, showcasing the look effortlessly in her 1971 wedding to Mick Jagger. From the exquisitely tailored YSL suit to the romantically veiled hat, this look defined a decade. And it was only 1971.
Elsewhere, wedding fashion was very romantic with a medieval flair. The most famous bridal atelier of the day was Christos who created exquisite wedding dresses, trimmed with hand-clipped lace and beaded pearls. Another coveted wedding dress designer was John Burbidge, who designed gowns for Priscilla of Booston between 1968 and 1985. It was also during this era that many bridal wear designers became successful and desired, including Frank Masandrea and Jim Hjem.
By 1973 most US gowns featured what we call a “dust ruffle”–a country-esque look that features a ruffle that encircles the hem about 12 inches above it. The finishing touch to the look was wide-rimmed picture hats (as worn by Bianca Jagger in her fashion-forawrd ensemble). Think Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With the Wind.
Meanwhile, in the UK brides looked to King Arthur’s Camelot and romantic medieval princess features were incorporated into wedding dresses, including high necks and cascading sleeves.
By 1975 disco surfaced and with it came a whole new fashion aesthetic that was to influence fashion from then onwards. For brides, the disco era signified a move away from structured gowns to the stretch polyester double knit, heralded as the fabric of the future.
Double knit gowns became wildly popular–flowing drop back caplets, batwing sleeves, empire waists and bustled trains. The look was all about giving the appearance of being wrapped like a Grecian Goddess. The look was all about draping. Sound familiar?
Celebrity Weddings, 1970s:
Mick and Bianca Jagger – 1971
Princess Anne and Captain mark Philips – 1973
Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton – 1975
Alana Hamilton and Rod Stewart – 1979