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Essences: Vintage ~ 60s ~ 70s ~ Bohemian ~ Wedding ~ Honeymoon ~ Bride ~ Bridesmaid ~ Goddess ~ Indian Summer ~ Eastern Promise ~ Ethnic ~ Oriental ~ Mexicana ~ Egyptian ~ Pre-Raphaelite ~ Ophelia ~ Sensual ~ Boho ~ Free Love ~ Hippy-Luxe ~ Gypsy ~ Flower Power ~ Summer of Love ~ Barefoot on the Beach ~ Midnight Bonfires ~ Bohemian ~ Paris ~ Beatnik ~ Left Bank ~ Beauty ~ Poet ~ Rock Chick ~ Free Spirit...


The sun blazes, spilling over in the sky, too much light to be contained. She catches it, becomes it, and dances on the sand, the vibrant red of her maxi dress Kaftan followed by green, yellow, black, all coming alive and dancing with her. Her vintage Kaftan drapes beautifully on her form, the silky fabric falling with ease, moving freely with her, the feminine neckline complimenting the breathtaking cascade of the kimono-style sleeves. Coming to life like wild tropical birds and butterflies as her arms arc into the sky, her sleeves fall elegantly and lyrically by her side as she becomes still, staring out at the ocean.


Her spirit feeling free she can almost reach out and take the hands of women who have danced here before just like this, to the sound of the sea on the heat of the sand. Bohemians of the 60s and 70s, artists, thinkers, dreamers, every woman who has dared to love, dared to dream, to dance and to face the sun. 


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Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014




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Essences: Vintage ~ Bohemian ~ Irish Boho ~ Wedding ~ Honeymoon ~ Bride ~ Bridesmaid  ~ Ethereal Goddess ~ 60s vintage ~ Forever Timeless ~ Beatnik ~ Jackie Onassis ~ Twiggy ~ Jean Shrimpton ~ Sophia Loren ~ Supermodel ~ Debutante ~ Sophisticated  ~ Elegant  ~ 60s ~ Free Love ~ Hippy-Luxe ~ Gypsy ~ Indian Summer  ~ Flower Power ~ Summer of Love ~ Barefoot on the Beach ~ Midnight Bonfires ~ Bohemian ~ Paris ~ Beatnik ~ Left Bank ~ Beyond Beautiful ~ Angelic ~ Movie Star ~ Red Carpet ~ Cocktails ~ Divine ~ Vamp ~ Diva ~ Sexy ~ Serene ~ Stunning ~ Siren...


In a white haze of daisies, clouds and feathers she stands, clover underfoot, listening to the melody of the stream as it flows steadily across moss covered rocks. The pure white of her vintage 1960s crochet lace dress reflects in the water, like a thousand tiny swans alight. Fitting her natural shape beautifully her knee-length dress brings from the 1960s an understated hourglass elegance and glamour, while the exquisite heavy linen fabric is alive with ornate floral cut out lace, curling up to the high, curved neckline, the genteel edges of lace petals resting on her collarbone.



The scent of Juniper drifts sweetly in the air as she turns to watch two doves circle the sky. She is a vision of Celt-Boho, an ethereal beauty. The naturally ornate lace patterning gently fades into a feminine, delicately edged straight hem, a concealed back zip from neck to waist, a flawless vintage piece, a second skin, a plumage as unique as she herself is. Faces and cameras have turned to her again and again, spellbound, - a bride, a supermodel, film star, or that angelic enchantress who deftly weaves her delight as she picks wildflowers in the meadow. 


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Essences : Very vintage inspired ~ Masquerade ~ Sultry ~ Sensual ~ Mistress ~ Victorian ~ Equestrian ~ Riding ~ Regency ~ Baroque ~ New Romantics ~ Casanova ~ Gothic Beauty ~ Noir Vamp ~ Midnight Tryst ~ Courtesan ~ Dark Romance ~ Rock Chick ~ Steampunk ~ Theatrical ~ Circus ~ Berlin ~ Night club ~ Cabaret ~ Paris Left Bank ~ Beatnik ~ Studio 54 ~ Femme Fatale ~ Diva ~ Dark Decadence...


Dusk is falling. Hazy greys and oranges drift in between branches over her head, softly reflecting across the black satin fabric of her vintage inspired corset backed jacket, highlighting the intricately embossed floral patterning with a subtle skull motif. She will rejoin the crowd soon, she will take the light at the masquerade, Victorian femininity and equestrian sophistication enveloping her form. Her beautifully fitted jacket, with long bell-cuffed poet sleeves will bring night's mystery into the ballroom with her, moon faces turning to watch her, stars precisely placed in every eye. 



The sumptuous corset back with generously long ribbon, will come alive as she moves, a timeless curving, a structure of beauty and knowing, lavishly finishing with long tails hemmed with black lace and satin shirring that echo the flourishes and puffing of the sleeves and lace trims. With no need for a Prince Charming she will be at one with the dance, with the poetry of her movements and feelings, the romance of lace and trailing ribbon, of heroines and trailblazers. But for now she breathes in the quieting air, takes in the fading light. She leaves her mask on the ground and unveiled, to the sound of horses' hooves in the distance, she waits for the mysteries of Night to greet her searching spirit. 


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Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014






Vintage inspired Victorian Regency Gothic Mistress Equestrian small black jacket

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Essences : Very vintage inspired Victorian ~ Equestrian ~ Riding ~ Regency ~ Baroque ~ New Romantics ~ Casanova ~ Mistress ~ Masquerade ~ Gothic Beauty ~ Noir Vamp ~ Medieval ~ Literary Heroine ~ Midnight Tryst ~ Courtesan ~ Dark Romance ~ Rock Chick ~ Steampunk ~ Berlin ~ Night club ~ Cabaret ~ Paris Left Bank ~ Beatnik ~ Studio 54 ~ Diva ~ Dark Decadence...



The thunder rolls gently over the darkening hills. A silvery light falls upon her as she stands in the grasses, watching birds gather in bare trees before the first rainfall. She is easily seen, a graceful figure silhouetted against the roaming plains. An embodiment of gothic sophistication wearing a very vintage inspired black jacket, the beautiful dovetail back bringing Victorian mystery to  the New Romantic flavoured cropped front. Full length sleeves, with opulent bell cuffs, punctuated by 3 brass-like buttons, give a decadently soft and romantic flow against the beautifully fitted lines, seams and minute silver threading of the jacket. The arc of the cuffs fall dramatically from her arms as she raises them to her eyes, shading them from the electric glare of the clouds so she might catch her first glimpse of whom she awaits.


Embroidered knotwork above the dovetail and cuffs gives a creative flourish to her streamlined jacket, a softly contained embellishment set against the wide, expansive curve of the skies. Feature pocket flaps with triple pointed trim, and same brass-like button decoration edge the jacket with Steampunk flare, while the front button and chain fastening weaves a timeless quality into her look, a journey through the ages. The clouds are deepening now, clustering with expectation, the air thick and heady. She waits, before the storm, feeling its power and knowing her own.


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Essences: Vintage ~ Bohemian ~ Honeymoon ~ Goddess ~ Sensual ~ Romantic ~ Boho ~ 60s ~ 70s ~ Free Love ~ Hippy-Luxe ~ Gypsy ~ Fiesta ~ Indian Summer ~ Flower Power ~ Summer of Love ~ Barefoot on the Beach ~ Midnight Bonfires ~ Bohemian ~ Paris ~ Beatnik ~ Left Bank ~ Prairie ~ 18c Courtesan ~ Wench ~ Masquerade ~ Mistress ~ Theatrical ~ Period Drama ~ Ethereal Gothic Beauty ~ Poet ~ Supermodel ~ Free Spirit ~ Beyond Beautiful...


The wings of the night fold to envelop her. She is dancing in black crochet, her feet bare on the moonlit sand. The air is still warm, carrying the scent of jasmine and the refracted light of flickering bonfire flames. In one movement, the hand-made cotton crochet of her black maxi dress greets the wind like crows. Such a delicate bodice with delicately trimmed straps, in full circular and flower motif crochet reaching to the empire waistline, extending down into the breathtakingly full skirt, folds and folds of ornately intricate crochet now circling the sand, a gothic enchantment as the tide laps her toes.



Standing on the shoreline the asymmetric, handkerchief hem brings a fullness to the skirt, its delicate points and falling circular patterning almost shimmers, like an upturned black flame. She holds one point of the skirt in her hand, extending it out fully to her side letting the dress open out bat-like into the smoke. Evoking the freedom and romance of the 1960 and 70s, of poetry, thought and spirit, she knows the night, she knows the power of the flame, and she knows herself. 


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Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014





Vintage 60s 70s beautifully hand-made cotton crochet dress

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Essences: Vintage ~ Bohemian ~ Wedding ~ Honeymoon ~ Bride ~ Bridesmaid ~ Goddess ~ Sensual ~ Romantic ~ Boho ~ 60s ~ 70s ~ Free Love ~ Hippy-Luxe ~ Gypsy ~ Fiesta ~ Indian Summer ~ Flower Power ~ Summer of Love ~ Barefoot on the Beach ~ Midnight Bonfires ~ Bohemian ~ Paris ~ Beatnik ~ Left Bank ~ Prairie ~ 18c Courtesan ~ Wench ~ Theatrical ~ Period Drama ~ Ethereal Gothic Beauty ~ Poet ~ Supermodel ~ Free Spirit ~ Beyond Beautiful ~ Angelic ~ Divine...


The sun catches the edges of her form, making her glow radiantly as she walks though the meadow, her dress trailing behind her like a stream of gypsophila. Summoning the vintage Boho chic of the 1960s and 70s her hand-made cotton crochet maxi dress fits her form beautifully, ornate flourishes of detail to the straps of the fitted bodice , fanning out like an array of small shells. A heady infusion of poetry and Bohemian romance, echoed in the unique crochet embellishments running down the back seam, like tiny white butterfly wings.


From the white crochet bodice the cream crochet skirt cascades to the floor, expanses of floral crochet spanning wide and billowing in the summer breeze. Folds of skirt gathered delicately at the sides of the waistline evoke a prairie chic flavour with a poetic, gypsy flicker, a flurry of crochet like dancing clouds. The long sweep of the skirt to the front and back spills from the folds to delicately trail the ground, a breath exhaling across sun-kissed grass. As she spends her day in reverie, collecting flowers, her ethereal grace could mesmerise birds mid-flight. She is a bride, poet, thinker, dancer, everything she could possibly dream to be.


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Beautiful vintage bohemian nude dress - Kate Moss Topshop

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Fabulous square studding ~ Chainmail ~ Open fronted ~ Statement piece Sold out as soon as it hit the stores a number of years ago and now very sought after indeed ~ seen on many celebrities and models at red carpet events...


Very Rock Chick ~ 60s 80s 90s ~ Very Glamorous ~ 20s 30s Evening Glamour


Essences : Diva ~ Siren ~ Rock Chick ~ Studio 54 ~ Supermodel ~ Vamp ~ Night Club ~ Cabaret ~ Belle Noir ~ Glam Rock ~ Stunning...



The beat moves, enmeshing everyone in the club, holding them in a network of lights and flashes, a sea of faces hypnotised by music and people and art. She walks through them, each face turning her way as she passes, the deep black 100% knitted Viscose of her vintage inspired Topshop Trophy jacket punctuated by a constellation of round and square studded embellishments, her own Universe weaving through the crowds. Open fronted with a beautiful bolero cut shape and long sleeves, her trophy jacket steals the attention of the room, dazzling glimmers of light bouncing off the intricate studwork as she moves, it is a highly sought after piece, stories tell of it selling out immediately after landing in stores. Yet it's the glamour and verve that has enraptured the people in the club, the elegance of a silver screen goddess coupled with a rebellious rock chick edge. The mesmerising lines of beaded gunmetal, silver coloured square studs running down the sides of the long sleeves and aligning across the shoulders, giving way to the more delicately rounded studs across the lower section and sleeve insides, creating a sculpted look, heightened shape, and the revelation that her soul is etched onto her jacket, this blazing spirit, this fearless woman. This trophy jacket, whether worn with a glamorous evening dress or a favourite pair of  jeans, from Blondie to Florence Welch, is an expression not a hiding, a piece for one who knows transformation, the edges of timelessness. For the one who wants to traverse the expanses of her own night skies, infinite starlight navigation. 


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Vintage Genuine Rock n Roll Teddy Boy Teddy Girl unisex 50s drape jacket

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Essence : 1950s ~ Rock n Roll ~ Rockabilly ~ Teddy Girl ~ Teddy Boy ~ Non-Conformist ~ Punk ~ Swing ~ Jive



"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” George Bernard Shaw



Description: She is the brave, the daring, the free. On tarmac, in the fields, wherever her feet touch ground she lets the music take her, a rock 'n' roll heart dancing to its own beat. In her genuine, 1950s, Teddy Boy Unisex drape coat jacket she feels every bit a rule breaker and rule maker as the Teddy Girls were, shaking off their weight of conformity, discarding the brokenness of post-war solemnity to claim a kind of liberation that was theirs, and theirs alone. She wants freedom, she wants expression, the way those girls in their brief but vibrant fragment of fashion history expressed their souls to a delicate world through the clothing they customised and wore. Their long draped coats over rolled-up jeans, flat shoes and slicked back, short hair, redefining any imposed conventions of femininity.  Made from pure new wool, black with deep red velvet trim on the collar, jetted pockets and cuffs and fastening with one red button to the front, wearing this thigh-length jacket she can sing her own song in a contemporary world, she can be Punk and Poet, spirited and bold. A wild, free beauty. When she needs to feel it, when she needs to reignite the spark, she can remember their time, the time when women took to the skies, and when they danced, truly danced, for the first time. 


Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014
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Essence : Victorian Vamp ~ Courtesan ~ Mysterious ~ Russian ~ Equestrian ~ Mistress ~ Tudor ~ Medieval ~ Guinevere ~ Maid Marion ~ Romance ~ Masquerade ~ Noir Vamp ~ 60s Rock Chick ~ Winter Boho ~ Casanova ~ Midnight Tryst ~ Tess of the d’Urbervilles ~ Dark Angel ~ Wicked Beauty... Opulent ~ Sumptuous ~ Heavy ~ Evocative ~ Midnight Black




Description: A sliver of darkness, cut from the map of night, starlight reflecting in shimmers across the deep, black, velvet of her full length coat cradling her form. She is arcane and wise, and she waits. Buttoned from the neck to waist, with four frog fastenings, this vintage Wallis gothic maxi riding coat wraps her in mystery, cloaks her in dark angel wings. She belongs to no one but the Muses, and when they call she will walk out into the moonlight, the full splendour of her seen and marvelled at, her Victorian allure and beauty with twists of Bohemia and rock chick. 


This long splendour of a coat fits to the waist honouring her hourglass shape, flaring out from her waist as she turns and moves, the black velvet falling in folds to her feet, eddying around her like a dark whirlpool as she walks. She is the heroine of every story, the one who is fought for, the one who is empowered to fight, the one who with a wave of one hand can weave enchantments and conjure dreams. An incantation of the soul, she is everything she wants to be...


Excellent vintage condition. Please bear in mind that we offer exquisite vintage and often antique pieces, and vintage items are not shop new ~ we only ever often items in excellent vintage condition ~ and always state any issues except for very minor wear or tiny marks which are expected with vintage items and cannot be really seen in wearing unless you pour over the items looking for them...This beautiful evocative piece is in lovely condition.

Fabulous short pile smooth high quality black vintage velvet ~ fully lined with heavy satin silky fabric in black. Hour glass shape ~ nehru collar ~ ornate frog fastenings ~ pockets ~ very flared skirt ~ extremely beautiful.

Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014
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Essences : Bohemian ~ Wedding ~ Festival ~ Romantic ~ Hippie-Luxe ~ Summer of Love ~ Barefoot on the Beach ~ 40s Tea Dress ~ 40s War Bride ~ Soldier's Sweetheart ~ Tea Dress ~ 60s ~ 70s ~ Hippie-Luxe ~ Day or Night ~ Adorable...





Description: Her bare feet softly take her across the sand, the setting sun kissing the nude fabric of her beautiful dress, both boho and 40s tea dress, easing her effortlessly from a care-free day to a music and mystery enriched night. The elegant beauty of this sought after Kate Moss @ Topshop dress is punctuated by the crochet lace inserts, with their ornate and intricate designs, like a scattering of flowers across an expanse of sunlit sand. 


This woman feels a competence at dawn or dusk, like the strong women of wartime years, their resilience, their grace, meeting the Bohemian festival woman, the unleashing of a free, creative spirit from within. Soft nude/peachy pale and with a very slight puffing on the shoulders, fronted with a full length sturdy zip, lightly shirred elastic at the waist, this dress knows how to envelop the strength in beauty, it knows how to hold hands with women throughout time, a WWII soldier's sweetheart, a bride or bridemaid, a timeless carefree spirit, it knows love and tides and it knows liberty. And the woman who wears it knows no limits.


Vintage inspired 60s 70s boho for the day or dressed up at night ~ or a 1940s tea dress style ~ this sought after dress by Kate Moss is ABSOLUTELY STUNNING ~ Ideal for a bridesmaid or as a wedding guest, just add a beautiful wide brimmed hat...GORGEOUS!!!


Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014



Links ~  Bohemian style clothing

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Vintage 70s 60s absolutely stunning cotton crochet cream/white hi-low dress


Essences : Vintage ~ Wedding ~ Honeymoon ~ 60s ~ 70s ~ Indian Summer ~ Romantic ~ Dreamy ~ Adorable ~ Honeymoon ~ Boho ~ Bride ~ Bridesmaid ~ Festival ~ Flower Power ~ Summer of Love ~ Hippy-Luxe ~ Barefoot on the Beach ~Midnight Beach Bonfires ~ Bohemian ~ Paris ~ Beatnik ~ Left Bank ~ Prairie ~ Gypsy ~ Supermodel ~ Beauty...



Description: The scent of every beautiful summer floats by on the breeze, stirring memories of long, care-free days filled with music, sun and love. Still overtaken by the sensations of the scent, you see her. Infinitely beautiful in this shape-honouring white/cream crochet dress, with the symmetry of its V neckline to the front and cross over straps at the back, glowing with Boho spirit and 1970s chic. She will have her fun, the front of the dress short and playful, but with its long length at the back, scalloped hem and delicate cut out patterning, beauty and poetry sing the loudest song.


You imagine her to be a visionary, a fountain of ideas and creativity, leading the poetic dance by firelight. Then you see her as a bride, captivating, entrancing, Titania incarnate, Gypsophilia and wildflowers entwined in her hair as if they grew there. As if Nature itself wanted to unfold its splendour through her. A white butterfly lands on her hand, and together they dance.


Excellent vintage condition.

No fabric labels ~ Cotton crochet, very beautiful with natural stretch to the crochet.

Bohemian beauty ~ Ideal as a wedding dress ~ lovely for so many occasions...

Hi-low style, cross over back straps, fabulous crochet and with gorgeous scalloped hem front and back. Can be worn fitted or slightly looser, looks fabulous both ways. A really beautiful dress ~ looks really stunning on...Sensual, elegant, sexy, lovely, wild, free, very beautiful...

Words / Copyright © Theatre of Fashion Ltd ~ 2014
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Long white lace dress ~ Long white maxi dress

Posted by on in Colour





White : Perfection, Light, Summer Lace, Weddings...



“Black is the absence of all colour. White is the presence of all colours. I suppose life must be one or the other...”

~ Mary Balogh, Then Comes Seduction



“Women think of all colours except the absence of colour. I have said that black has it all. White too. Their beauty is absolute. It is the perfect harmony.”

~ Coco Chanel, Chanel



White is the colour of snow, that endless cold white which covers winter landscapes... it is the colour of polar bears, and icy glaciers, of milk, of bridal gowns, and the colour of the clouds in the sky, and the colour of purity.



In heraldry white depicts faith ~ and in religions, angels always wear white.White has always been with us, forever, from the beginning ~ and it has become a colour strongly associated with all beginnings. The Queen traditionally wears a long white maxi dress when she opens the new session of Parliament; in high society, debutantes traditionally wear a long white lace dress, or white silk, or white taffeta, yet always white, for their very first ‘coming out’ ball; and a new project is often described as beginning with the white of a ‘blank page’.


Historically, white was one of the first colours used by the Palaeolithic artists ~ they used lime white, made from ground calcite or chalk, sometimes as a background, or as a highlight, in their early cave paintings. The beautiful mystical, pure white unicorn was a common subject of Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, paintings and tapestries and was strongly considered to be a symbol of purity and grace. In ancient Egypt, white was connected with the goddess Isis, and the priests and priestesses of Isis dressed only ever in white linen. In Christianity, a white lily represents the Madonna. In Greece and other ancient civilizations, white was often associated with mother's milk ~ and in the Talmud, milk was one of only four deeply sacred substances, along with wine, and honey, and the rose. The ancient Greeks saw the world in terms of darkness and light, so to them white was a fundamental colour, not an abstract, nor an absence of colour. Although considered universally to be a colour without variation, the Japanese have six distinct terms to define whiteness, which confirms the different layers of whiteness which the colour white can have.


 Symbolically and historically, the colour white is the opposite of the colour black, and often represents light, or enlightenment, in contrast with darkness. According to surveys in Europe and the United States, the colour white is most often associated with innocence, with perfection, the good, honesty, beginnings, the new, neutrality, lightness, and exactitude. It holds within it the feeling of safety ~ and a white flag in wartime is universally recognized as a symbol of truce...and the white dove is an international symbol of peace.



In clothing and fashion, white has held much significance throughout the generations. White was the universal colour of both men’s and women's underwear, and of sheets for the bedchambers, in the 18th and 19th centuries. It was absolutely unthinkable to have sheets or underwear of any other colour, as you will find when buying antique and vintage under garments, bed wear and linens. The reason was simple: the manner of washing linen in boiling water caused colours to fade. When this linen was worn out, it was collected and turned into high-quality paper. This link is still with us to this day. A ‘white paper’ is an authoritative report on a major issue by a team of experts; a government report outlining policy; or a significant official treatise, and by association with the colour white we signify these documents to hold unbiased information and ‘clean’ facts...a remnant from the days of washed and boiled white linens, cleaned of any dirt, and turned into pure pulp for paper making.


Colours and their meanings have many interwoven connections, and these associations evolve with the passing of time and are also strongly shaped by generational traditions. The colour white has had different meanings, significance, and uses, at different times in history, and still today has varied meaning and uses in different parts of the world. We see this very clearly with many colours, yet especially with the colour white and its central and very special relationship to bridal gowns and weddings themselves (or the ‘white wedding’), that significant day which marks a rite of passage, that special moment in time, of change, for both the bride and the groom and their families.


Unusually for those in the western world who have for so long associated white with weddings and black with funerals, the colour white in many cultures throughout history is strongly associated with mourning. Historically, the colour of deepest mourning among medieval European Queens was white rather than black ~ and this tradition survived in Spain until the end of the fifteenth century. It was the long held custom for the Queen of France to wear ‘deuil blanc’ or ‘white mourning’ ~ and still today, white is the colour of mourning in China and in Africa.


Whereas today in the West brides will choose a long white maxi dress, in many eastern cultures, brides often choose red to symbolize prosperity and good fortune. Many wedding dresses in China, wedding saris in India and Pakistan, and the bridal form of the traditional Ao dai in Vietnam are scarlet red, the traditional colour of good luck and promise. However, in the Western world nowadays, and in Japan also, white has the strongest association with weddings and wedding dresses.



A ‘white wedding’ is a traditional formal or semi-formal occasion originating in Britain. The term first came from the white of the wedding dress, which first became popular with Victorian era elites, after Queen Victoria wore a long white lace dress at her own wedding to Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg in 1840. Although only stemming from the white colour of the dress itself at the time, the term has now come to encapsulate the entire Western wedding routine, especially in the Christian religious tradition, which generally includes a ceremony during which the marriage begins, followed by a reception...and, of course, where the bride wears a long white maxi dress.


Prior to Queen Victoria’s wedding, the first documented instance of a princess who wore a white wedding gown for a royal wedding ceremony is that of Philippa of England, who wore a tunic with a cloak in white silk in 1406. When Mary, Queen of Scots, married her first husband, Francis Dauphin of France in 1559, she wore a white wedding gown for no reason of historical significance except that it was her favourite colour, although at that time white was the colour of mourning for French Queens. However, this choice of white for bridal gowns and ceremonies was not a widespread trend, and prior to the Victorian era, a bride was married in any colour, black being especially popular for wedding dresses in Scandinavia.


Royal brides before Queen Victoria very often chose heavy brocaded gowns embroidered with white and silver thread, with red being a particularly popular colour in Western Europe more generally. European and American brides had been wearing a plethora of colours, including blue, yellow, and practical colours like black, brown, or grey. So Queen Victoria’s influential white wedding gown played a significant part in changing the traditions which had surrounded colour choices for bridal wear, not only for royalty, but for everybody in the western world and this has filtered through to many other cultures also.


On February 10, 1840, Queen Victoria married her cousin Albert and she established this lasting bridal custom of choosing white by wearing an off-white, silk-satin gown. Electing to wear this beautiful long white lace dress was considered a very radical decision at the time, especially for a royal wedding dress of such significance. It is said that Victoria had wanted to incorporate into her bridal gown some lovely white lace she dearly prized and that the dress in its entirety was tailored around this lace...and so the white wedding dress, which would influence brides for hundreds of years to come, and throughout the world, was created.


The official wedding portrait photograph of the royal couple was widely published, and after this many brides stated to opt for white in accordance with the Queen's choice. As accounts of Victoria's wedding spread across the Atlantic and throughout Europe, society elites followed her lead. Due of the limitations of laundering techniques at that time, white dresses provided an opportunity for conspicuous consumption and acted as a representative symbol of wealth and social standing. A white wedding dress was favoured as a way to show the world that the bride's family was so wealthy and so firmly part of the affluent class that the bride could choose an elaborate dress of such a pale and unpractical colour, which could be ruined by any sort of work or spill, and that this had no bearing on her choice whatsoever. At this time, and in the same way that white was chosen by the affluent for weddings, white was also the colour society debutantes were required to wear when they were presented at court for the ‘season’.


Since Victoria’s seminal wedding dress approximately 170 years ago, the colour white grew steadily and rapidly in popularity as the bridal colour of choice, not only for society weddings, but for everyone...and this was further underscored through the ensuing years by designers through the eras, and by the film industry who had enormous influence on fashion, trends and culture, including weddings.


The designer Coco Chanel, who is considered to be one of the most influential fashion designers of the 20th century, was a very powerful force behind much change and innovation in women's fashion. She was the one who officially introduced the short wedding dress in the 1920s: a white knee length dress worn with a long train ~ and again, as with Queen Victoria, Chanel’s standing and popularity saw her use of white for her wedding designs further cement white as the universal colour of the wedding dress.


It was of course the movie industry of the 1930s and 40s which had one of the biggest effects on wedding fashion, communicating, as films did, to people in such huge numbers. The portrayal of weddings in Hollywood movies, particularly immediately after World War II, helped crystallize and homogenize the white wedding into a normative and universally sought after form. Think of Claudette Colbert in her stunning luminescent silk satin white wedding gown and long veil in the 1934 film ‘It Happened One Night’. Or Katherine Hepburn in the romantic comedy ‘The Philadelphia Story’ (1940) where, in the final wedding scenes, she wears a luxurious floor sweeping organza white. And, just to name a few, remember...Ginger Rogers in the 1945 movie ‘It Had To Be You’ wearing a long white maxi dress in satin and with a stunning halo headdress ~ and of course, Audrey Hepburn in the enormously famous 1957 ‘Funny Face’, where Hepburn wore that classic 50s style ballerina-length wedding gown with very full skirt and tightly fitted bodice and layer upon layer of tulle...and all in wonderful white!!!


In more recent times, the white wedding style was given another hugely significant boost in 1981, when three-quarter billion people ~ one out of every six people all around the globe ~ watched Charles, Prince of Wales marry Lady Diana Spencer in her elaborate white taffeta dress with a 25-foot-long train. Valued at the time at £9,000, it became one of the most famous dresses in the world, and this royal wedding is generally considered the most influential white wedding of the 20th century.



Today most brides wear white, with many choosing a long white lace dress or white crochet, especially for Summer weddings, vintage style weddings, and for both formal and beach weddings.



Crochet, once a hippie-associated trend, has had a refreshing new look and feel that’s so beautiful and elegantly stylish...always sexy and, either dressed up or down, very versatile. The fashion revival of crochet ~ reintroduced from the popular 70s style  ~ has been gaining much popularity with designer's recently as a result of the bohemian allure which it offers, giving a simple yet chic vibe to any outfit. There is evidence that crochet dated from the 1800s, possibly from even earlier. It was Queen Victoria again who famously boosted the popularity of Irish Crochet Lace when she purchased some ~ she even learnt to crochet herself! The popularity of crochet hit a peak between 1910 and 1920, with Edwardian fashions calling for more complex stitch patterns, primarily using whites and creams. However, it was in the 1960s and 70s that crochet took on a whole new meaning ~ and after a long history, crochet items are now gaining in popularity once again and are gracing our couture catwalk shows. Seen on many celebrities and models, crochet is a beautiful look for many occasions ~ and in whites, or off white and creams, looks stunning as a wedding dress or bridesmaid's dress for bohemian, gypsy or hippie-luxe weddings. Crochet pieces may have hippie inspirations, but today the aesthetic is always luxurious with a modern sense of elegance and refinement and an easy way to achieve that sexy and bohemian look.

Beautiful white lace and up to the minute white crochet have both garnered a lot of attention on the catwalks this season and in previous seasons also, with designers such as Ralph Lauren, Pucci, Valentino, Dolce & Gabbana and Gucci showcasing chic fashion-forward dresses, from mini dresses to long maxi dresses in a multitude of new designs in these fabulously hand made fabrics with intricate cut out and delicate patterns. Valentino and Dolce and Gabbana have given us some of the most stunning white lace dresses over the years ~ and although these designers are out of most people’s price range, there are many fabulous vintage white lace dresses to be found which match these couture designs in their uniqueness and ethereal beauty. The same is true of Emilio Pucci and his beyond fabulous long white maxi dress in white crochet ~ again, Pucci is beyond most people in price, and yet there are the most beautiful vintage crochet dresses to be found, both long maxi and mini, which offer the wearer a one off and gorgeous alternative.



High street hot spots, including Topshop, the barometer of London street fashion, featured white crochet in their recent collections, recognising its popularity, its beauty, and versatility ~ all interwoven with that laid back, easy to wear, carefree, Boho style. Kate Moss has featured white Bohemian lace and crochet in her brand new 2014, much anticipated, and now total sell out and very sought after premium collection for Topshop ~ and Kate herself has been seen very often wearing white crochet and lace, as have numerous celebrities and models, especially wearing white lace and crochet dresses for red carpet events. ...and many brides to be are now choosing white lace or white crochet for their beautiful big day, because of its sexy and elegant, 30s or Bohemian, and always timeless, appeal.


White is an ancient colour, full of meanings and significance ~ and still to this day, always modern and essential. Whether we love it and wear it to mark the significance of our wedding day, or on the beach to contrast and accentuate our sun kissed tanned skin, or because it is so cooling in the heat, or so beautiful in the snow in winter, or elegant and stylish, sophisticated, sexy, peaceful, white has so many meanings for us.




It holds within it the essence of the endless. It is the colour of beginnings, and yet has always been with us, never ending. White, it is simply, always, beautiful.....






White on Pinterest ~ Dark purple dress The colour Red ~ Red dresses ~ long sleeve red dress 

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A beautiful vintage fashion film

Posted by on in Styles

A beautiful vintage fashion film by ELLE.....




Searching, exploring, dreaming..... Vintage but is timeless....

“Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.”

― André Gide

“If you don't take risks, you'll have a wasted soul.”


― Drew Barrymore 


Bohemian style clothing ~ Boho clothing

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Dark purple dress ~ Light purple dress

Posted by on in Colour

dark-purple-dress-purple-homecoming-dresses.jpgPurple ~ Royalty, Bohemia, Profanity and Biba



“Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple...” ~ Regina Brett


A colour that combines the calm stability of blue and the fierce energy of red, purple is traditionally and most notably the opulent colour of royalty: ‘It is the colour of luxury and passion, of princely robes and papal vestments, dazzling gems and florid prose...’ (Vogue 2012-13). Purple was one of the first colours used in prehistoric art ~ and down through the ages, it has come to symbolize power, nobility, luxury, and ambition. Purple conveys wealth and extravagance. It is associated with wisdom, dignity, independence, creativity ~ and not forgetting, amidst its rich hues, mystery and magic.


Throughout history, purple robes were worn by royalty, aristocracy and people of authority or high rank. Many believe this to be because of the rare occurrence of purple in nature and this rarity made it, not only have sacred meaning, but also one of the most expensive colour dyes to create. Through the ages, purple has been the colour worn by Roman Emperors and magistrates, and later by Roman Catholic bishops. In Thailand, it is the colour of Saturday. And according to surveys, almost 75 percent of pre-adolescent children prefer purple to all other colours.



Historically, purple was only worn by the elite few. A quick glance through images of medieval nobility and royalty and one is instantly met with images of beautiful queens and princesses in long purple cloaks over a dark purple dress. Think of maid Marion, or Guinevere, or a medieval handmaiden to the Queen’s Court, or a high-born woman of the Tudor aristocracy, and the sumptuous velvets of their long dresses come to mind...maybe a light purple dress with ornate gold embroidered borders, draping in soft folds as they move through the corridors of power and influence. This is the origin of purple in fashion ~ it has breeding, wealth and luxury interwoven into all its many shades: violet, plum, lavender, lilac, thistle, mauve, magenta, amethyst, wine, mulberry...all the myriad purples.


Since those early cave paintings, purple has been essential to artists. At the turn of the century, purple was a favourite colour of the German painter Gustave Klimt, who flooded his pictures with sensual purples and violets amidst luxurious golds. The pre-Raphaelites also favoured rich dark colours, purple being one of the most evocative. John William Waterhouse, an English pre-Raphaelite painter, most famous for his paintings of female characters from mythology and literature, used the dark rich colour in his famous ‘Boreas’ which shows a young woman in a windswept landscape with her thin wind-blown draperies of dark purples with blues.


Jane Morris (1839 - 1914), who was a model and muse to the pre-Raphaelite artists William Morris, whom she married, and Dante Gabriel Rossetti, epitomised, probably more than any of the women associated with the pre-Raphaelites, an unrestricted, flowing style of dress which, while very unconventional at the time, would be highly influential at certain periods during the 20th century. And the dark hues of the thin drapes and diaphanous fabrics so often seen in Pre-Raphaelite paintings remind us so much of the later (roughly 120 years later!), 1960s and early 1970s, Indian gauze cotton dresses, (flowing, floaty, just like those worn by Jane Morris), which were made by Indian dress makers such as Phool and Adini, and again very often in lilacs, purples, mulberries ~ and combined with that touch of gold, as with Klimt, except here the gold is Indian gold ink, block printed over the dark floral or paisley fabrics. These semi sheer, floaty, and very sensual, care free, bohemian 70s Indian pieces ~ a light purple dress, a dark purple dress, their rich purples mixed with maroons and blues and touches of gold ~ are now very sought after vintage pieces, evocative, as they are, of a bohemian hippie idyll and a free gypsy spirit which so many people hanker after as an expression of their true, and unconventional, selves.


So purple has connections to royalty, the church, and also to 70s hippies...all using purples in their clothing to express something of themselves in their own ways. Interestingly, although traditionally very strongly linked to the papal and royal establishment, the colour purple also has links with alternative thinking, the unconventional and social change. We noted earlier the connection of purple to hippie clothing ~ perhaps a reflection of the fact that purple has over the years become increasingly associated with a new age spirituality. However, even before this, in the early 20th century, it was linked to societal change when purple, along with green and white, were the chosen colours of the Women's Suffrage movement, which fought to win voting rights for women...and again was later associated with the Feminism of the 70s, and the psychedelic drug culture of the 1960s. During the 60s and early 70s it was also associated with counterculture and musicians like Jimi Hendrix with his 1967 song Purple Haze, and the English rock band Deep Purple which formed in 1968. And again, a far cry from the purple velvet robes which signified the historical and traditional power and piety of royalty and bishops, the colour purple is also used to describe profanity and bad language as in the expression “purple speech”.



Purple’s association with the unconventional and with bohemian living creates many tapestries, interwoven throughout the years. In modern usage, the term ‘Bohemian’ is applied to people who live unconventional, usually artistic, lives. It is a description of freedom and free living outside of the boundaries of convention which has been applied to many artists and groups and was used to describe the ‘Bloomsbury Group’ of the early 20th century, of which Vanessa Bell and Virginia Woolf were an integral part, among other artists, writers and thinkers. Before them, during the 1860s the term was associated in particular with the Pre-Raphaelite movement, that group of artists and aesthetes of which Dante Gabriel Rossetti was the most prominent ~ and Jane Morris his muse, painted in her free flowing robes of purples and magenta and amethyst...


The connections, and colours, continue to entwine as we move through the years...



dark-purple-dress-purple-homecoming-dresses-01.jpgFiona MacCarthy, a biographer of the pre-Raphaelite Edward Burne-Jones (1833 - 1898), noted that, in 1964, when the influential Biba store was opened in London by Barbara Hulanicki, the "long drooping structureless clothes", though sexier than the dresses portrayed in Burne-Jones paintings, such as The Golden Stairs or The Sirens, nevertheless greatly resembled them. Biba clothing was not only often very similar in style and shape, but Hulanicki also used the same dark rich colours the pre-Raphaelites loved and used...the dark purples, browns, blues...So here again we see fashion connections linking different artists and designers, often with years and years between them.



Barbara Hulanicki says of herself and her work that she was always “living in the past and redesigning into the present”. She has always acknowledged that when she created Biba, the clothing and the store, that she was greatly influenced by the pre-Raphaelites, just as Fiona MacCarthy noted. She says that the face of Biba, the famous pale face and dark lips in browns or dark purples, which was a new vision and radical concept at the time and became known as the ‘Biba look’ or the ‘Biba girl’, was very strongly influenced by the pre-Raphaelite painters especially Rossetti’s ‘The day dream’ (1880), a painting of Jane Morris, who at the time was married to William Morris and having an illicit affair with Rossetti. The interior of the Biba store itself has been described as having an atmosphere that "reeked of sex” ~ an old-fashioned, Edwardian style of forbidden sex with its feather boas, potted palms, bentwood coat racks and dark lighting. It has been quoted as being designed to look like a bordello with its purple, scarlet, black and gold plush fitments. Purple here again, defining the famous store, and again the exotic colour chosen by Hulanicki for so many of her Biba dresses, and the colour painted dark and seductive on the mouths of the Biba girls, as if they had been eating crushed purple berries with their fingers and the colour had spilled, and stayed, staining their lips. Barbara Hulanicki, describing the impact of the Biba look in her book, 'From A to Biba', said of the ‘Biba girls’: 'Wherever the girls went there was silence. Elly was completely blue: blue make-up, blue clothes, blue cap and blue curls. Eva was all green, Del all violet. Some girls were all in black... in their full regalia looking as if they had just left a Fellini set.'



So Del wore all violet, and probably a light purple dress to match her eye-shadow, or a dark purple dress and soft suede purple knee high boots...and Biba was beautifully fabulous, with its roots firmly planted in the pre-Raphaelite’s history of unconventional lives and sensual colours...and both a long way from the princely purple robes and vestments of the traditional church and conventional court.



Purple has many meanings, many meanings as it has meandered through the ages and eras ~ and like Lavender, orchid, lilac, and violet flowers which are considered delicate and precious plants, purple is a special and exotic colour in the palette of our fashion history and our lives, and has been for hundreds and hundreds of years. To paraphrase Barbara Hulanicki: purple has lived in the past and has redesigned itself again and again into the present.



“I was a punk before it got its name. I had that hairstyle and purple lipstick.” ~ Vivienne Westwood


“The sky is already purple; the first few stars have appeared, suddenly, as if someone had thrown a handful of silver across the edge of the world.” ~ Alice Hoffman, Here on Earth


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The colour Red Fashion and Colour ~ Blue ~ Light blue dresses 

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New ad features the 'society of elegant persons of the Congo' otherwise known as the 'Sapeurs', a group of everyday heroes from Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo.



And.... A Short Documentary.



A documentary Illustrating the brightly coloured and social affairs that bring the 'Sapeurs' together. Their bold choice to live an unexpected lifestyle is a source of celebrated originality and positivity. Their life is not defined by occupation or wealth, but by respect, a moral code and an inspirational display of flair and creativity. The Sapeurs show that whilst in life you cannot always choose your circumstances, you can always choose who you are.

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“Of the colors, blue and green have the greatest emotional range. Sad reds and melancholy yellows are difficult to turn up. Among the ancient elements, blue occurs everywhere: in ice and water, in the flame as purely as in the flower, overhead and inside caves, covering fruit and oozing out of clay. Although green enlivens the earth and mixes in the ocean, and we find it, copperish, in fire; green air, green skies, are rare. Gray and brown are widely distributed, but there are no joyful swatches of either, or any of exuberant black, sullen pink, or acquiescent orange. Blue is therefore most suitable as the color of interior life. Whether slick light sharp high bright thin quick sour new and cool or low deep sweet dark soft slow smooth heavy old and warm: blue moves easily among them all, and all profoundly qualify our states of feeling.”  ~  William H. Gass


“The sky grew darker, painted blue on blue, one stroke at a time, into deeper and deeper shades of night...” ~  Haruki Murakami, Dance Dance Dance


The quintessential ‘cool’ colour, blue relaxes the senses, most notably due to its deep connections with nature ~ it is after all, the colour of the sky and the ocean.“There is a reason people look outside each morning knowing the sky is out there and hoping it’s blue...” ~ Eisman. It is also commonly associated with ice, cold, and sometimes with sadness.


b2ap3_thumbnail_light-blue-dresses-long-blue-dress-02.jpgAlthough considered a ‘female’ colour in China, and despite being considered a ‘masculine’ colour in western culture, blue is the most favoured colour equally for both men and women. And let us not forget that in fashion terms also, blue denim jeans are of course the most popular clothing for both women and men alike. Yves Saint Laurent isfamously quoted as saying: “I have often said that I wish I had invented blue jeans: the most spectacular, the most practical, the most relaxed and nonchalant. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity - all I hope for in my clothes...” More generally in fashion terms, blue is typically worn by those people, both women and men, looking to create their own aura of serenity.


Blue was a late comer among the colours, used in art and decoration, as well as in language and literature. Reds, blacks, browns, and ochres are found in cave paintings from the Upper Paleolithic period, but not blue. Blue was also not used for dyeing fabric until long after red, ochre, pink and purple. This is probably due to the difficulty of making good blue dyes and pigments. The earliest known blue dyes were made from plants ~ woad in Europe, indigo in Asia and Africa, while blue pigments were made from minerals, usually either the extremely costly lapis lazuli, or azurite.



light-blue-dresses-long-blue-dress-03.jpgWhile red is the more physical colour, blue is the more cerebral, representing depth, stability, wisdom, confidence and intelligence. As a result of its calming affects, fashion consultants worldwide recommend wearing blue to job interviews because it symbolizes loyalty, and it is for this reason that police officers traditionally wear blue. In Mexico, blue is the colour of trust and serenity. In Thailand, it is associated, unusually, with a day of the week: Friday. And blue has very often been a favourite colour of artists, especially the Impressionist painters, who used it not just to depict nature, but to create moods, feelings and atmospheres. Pablo Picasso had a ‘blue period’ (1901–1904), where he used blues predominantly, with some green, and hardly any warm colours, to create a melancholy ambience to his work. And Matisse recognised the power of blue when he wrote, "A certain blue penetrates your soul."


With such strong symbolic connections to stability, loyalty and wisdom, it is no wonder the colour blue also has a significant link to marriage. What could be prettier than bridesmaids in light blue dresses as the bride’s ‘something blue’, and not forgetting the iconic pale blue of the famous jeweller’s Tiffany box, creating a strong visual connection with engagement rings, a traditional symbol of loyalty and stability.


Aside from weddings, this season blue has been seen a lot on the designer catwalks and runways as well as on the high street, particularly dresses in summery hues; think light blue dresses with bright accessories or a long blue dress with vivid pink shoes. It is all about making an impact whilst retaining a little serenity and calm, and what better colour to choose than dreamy blue. Valentino has created many a beautiful long blue dress in intricate lace, and some stunning light blue dresses in a duck egg shade created entirely in macramé type crochet, a fabric which is everywhere this season and fabulously versatile for both casual and more formal occasions. Valentino’s version will set you back about £3,000 ~ however there are some delightful and really gorgeous vintage blue crochet pieces to be found.



light-blue-dresses-light-blue-dresses-022.jpgAnother designer, whose vintage pieces especially, are now very sought after, is Laura Ashley. Laura's love of all things Victorian led to the longer length silhouette which would become the company's trademark and was right on trend at the end of the 1960s when fashion turned from the mini to the maxi ~  a trend that has since returned with force, emphasising Laura Ashley's timeless quality. She designed many fabulous blue dresses in numerous shades from the darkest midnight blue to the softest palest blue, and in a myriad different patterns and prints, from florals to mythical animals ~ dresses which often evoked a rural, 19th century feel, characterised by romantic designs and the use of natural fabrics, and which reflected quality, subtlety and nostalgia adored by modern brides and bridesmaids.


b2ap3_thumbnail_light-blue-dresses-light-blue-dresses-09.jpgThe dresses were made from the textiles printed by the company, and the designs were mostly modern interpretations of antique prints (influences included English Medieval, William Morris, Chinese and Egyptian). The 20s and 30s were also brilliantly referenced with ‘Gatsby’ inspired sailor
dresses with iconic styling, in the loveliest, most lightweight cottons and linens and very often in blues ~ polka dot blues, and striped blues, and in all manner of hues which echo the sea and seaside on a summer’s day, or which evoke English cottage gardens with colours such as cornflower blue, or the regal blue of tall delphiniums, or the many shades of sweet smelling hyacinths. Indeed, with these modern versions of fashion from times gone by, Laura Ashley had hit upon a "brand new version of the past”, and these vintage dresses have become very sought after and are typical of Laura’s love of classic lines, beauty and nostalgia which evoke a very particular part of English heritage.


b2ap3_thumbnail_light-blue-dresses-long-blue-dress-00_20140509-033343_1.jpgCurrently, the desire to reference vintage style in fashion has returned and vintage fashion is now extremely sought after everywhere, boosting the popularity of Laura Ashley’s vintage pieces which are now being exhibited in vintage collections and coveted by collectors worldwide. Laura Ashley's significant place in British fashion history was further cemented in Summer 2013 with the first major retrospective of the designer held at Bath’s fashion museum and the Bowes museum in Co Durham. These exhibitions showcased over 70 vintage dresses, including fabulous examples of vintage blue dresses, including a long blue dress of the darkest navy blue with cream Victorian style open work crochet which was representative of Laura Ashley’s earliest styles, and a number of light blue dresses which so perfectly depict Laura Ashley’s characteristic look of the 60s and 70s which inspired a generation of young women to dress as their romantic heroines such as Thomas Hardy’s milkmaid from Tess of the d’Urbervilles, or Cathy from Wuthering Heights searching in vain across the northern moors for Heathcliff. Laura Ashley is famously quoted as saying: "I reckon that women looked their best at the turn of the century..." ~ and women today often agree, seeking out as they are, over fifty years later, Laura’s beautiful and rare vintage designs, especially for bridal dresses or for bridesmaids for vintage themed or bohemian weddings.


b2ap3_thumbnail_light-blue-dresses-light-blue-dresses-98.jpgWhether you are looking for contemporary dresses, or vintage pieces, or you love to live in your favourite pair of old adored fraying Levi jeans, blue is a colour which remains a popular and versatile choice for women everywhere. From bright dazzling cobalt, to duck egg, blue has a shade for everyone and as such is a delightfully popular colour for designers to use in collections season after season, whether it be light blue dresses for bridesmaids, summer evening soirees or a day out at the races, or a long blue dress for the opera or special evening occasion, this beautiful colour, in all its shades, will leave you anything but blue!



“One of his tears fell in my mouth, where it became a blue sapphire, source of strength, source of strength and eternal hope.”  ~ Anita Diamant, The Red Tent


“I saw a picture of Elvis in blue lame, and thought that if I could recreate that suit and walk down the King's Road in it, someone might pick me up and take me off on a crazy adventure...” ~ Malcolm Mclaren


b2ap3_thumbnail_light-blue-dresses-long-blue-dress-07.jpg“There is no blue without yellow and without orange...” ~ Vincent Van Gogh


“I have often said that I wish I had invented blue jeans: the most spectacular, the most practical, the most relaxed and nonchalant. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity - all I hope for in my clothes...” ~ Yves Saint Laurent


And if you pardon me

I'd like to say

We'll do okay

Forever in blue jeans, babe

And long as I can have you

Here with me I'd much rather be

Forever in blue jeans, babe


~ "Forever In Blue Jeans" ~ Neil Diamond 


Click to buy beautiful blue vintage clothing...


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Click to buy beautiful vintage Laura Ashley ~ The colour Red ~ Red dresses 

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Red", I write "is the color of life. It's blood, passion, rage...Beginnings and violent end. Red is the color of love. Beating hearts and hungry lips. Roses, Valentines, cherries. Red is the color of shame. Crimson cheeks and spilled blood. Broken hearts, opened veins. A burning desire to return to white...” ~ Mary Hogan, Pretty Face


Click to buy beautiful red vintage dresses 


I love bright red drinks, don’t you? They taste twice as good as any other color.”  ~ L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables



“And whenever I'm in a situation where I'm wearing the same as 600 other people and doing the same thing as 600 other people, looking back, I always found ways to make myself different, whether it be having a red lining inside of my jacket, having red shoes, it hasn't changed.” ~ Jeremy Irons



If fashion is a language, colour is one of its main means of expression...” (Veronica Culatti), and this could not be any more apparent than the colour red in fashion.


The colour red garners the most powerful and provocative reaction of all the colours. So stimulating, it can increase the heart rate ~ red is passionate, vibrant, intense and the strongest of all the ‘warm’ colours. It is associated with energy and strength and danger ~ and also has erotic undercurrents which very often manifests in fashion and films and femme fatales as red lipstick accentuating the mouth, or bright red painted nails, and of course the show stopping move stars in red maxi dresses. It is the colour of scandal, and of rage, and also, especially in ancient heraldry, used to indicate courage.


red-maxi-dresses-long-sleeve-red-dress-67.jpgb2ap3_thumbnail_red-maxi-dresses-long-sleeve-red-dress-87.jpgToday, in Western culture, red is associated with sexuality, whilst in the East, it is a celebratory colour and a symbol of love, with both a short or a long sleeve red dress worn by brides in much of Eastern culture. Red has always been strongly associated with love, thus, red and it’s lighter shade pink, have become the symbolic colours of St Valentine’s Day. And think of the famous love song by Chris de Burgh, ‘Lady in Red’...which he wrote as a love song about his wife Diane.


Without a doubt red gets noticed, whether indicating VIP status on the red carpet, or signalling drivers to stop, our brains are trained to pay attention to red. Socially, red most symbolically represents power. This can often mean, among other things, sexual prowess ~ as has consistently been portrayed in pop culture and popular fashion. For instance, Jessica Rabbit, who famously wears a body-hugging red dress in her cartoon manifestation of powerful and overt sexual allure, or more recently, the most famous of all the contemporary  red maxi dresses, the attention grabbing and gorgeous red chiffon dress designed and worn by the famous, independent and successful model and now business woman, Kate Moss at the preview to her premium fashion collaboration with Topshop.


red-maxi-dresses-long-sleeve-red-dress_20140507-061705_1.jpgDuring the 1950s, many fashion designers looked to Spain for inspiration, and the rich ruby red adored by the passionate Mediterranean cultures became the colour very often worn by movie stars wanting to be centre stage. Brigitte Bardot, Liz Taylor, and Ava Gardner all chose myriad red dresses ~ and in the 1953 box office hit Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell wore the unforgettable and famous sequined red maxi dresses ~ with matching red lipstick! In the 1957 film Funny Face, the fabulous Audrey Hepburn glides down the steps of the Louvre in a show-stopping silk confection by Hubert de Givenchy ~ another of the very iconic red maxi dresses made famous by film stars throughout the decades.


Whether channelling Maid Marian in her medieval long sleeve red dress in rich opulent velvet or wearing the more contemporary bias cut red maxi dresses, in luxury silks and satins, red has had us transfixed for generations. In divine red lace or soft red chiffon by
 Valentino, or in rich red with ornate brocade embellishment by Galliano for Christian Dior haute couture, or wearing the ever contemporary and sought after, sell out, maxi red dresses by Topshop or other high street hot spots, all women love to wear
red...sometimes, often, always. Worn by a beautiful bride or bridesmaid, to a masquerade ball or an evening soiree, to a red carpet event, or for a Valentine’s Day, or night, liaison...the colour red, and red maxi dresses especially, have the power to entice,b2ap3_thumbnail_red-maxi-dresses-long-sleeve-red-dress-01_20140507-062103_1.jpg inspire, seduce and provoke...and it is certainly a colour we just adore it with a never ending passion. 


“Your red dress,’ she said, and laughed.


But I looked at the dress on the floor and it was as if the fire had spread across the room. It was beautiful and it reminded me of something I must do. I will remember I thought. I will remember quite soon now...”  ~  Jean Rhys, Wide Sargasso Sea


“Designers want me to dress like Spring, in billowing things. I don't feel like Spring. I feel like a warm red Autumn...” ~ Marilyn Monroe


“I want to be different. If everyone is wearing black, I want to be wearing red.” ~ Maria Sharapova


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ossie-clark-1970s-fashion-70s-clothing-5_20140503-001338_1.jpgHigh on the list of designers past and present who had, and continue to have, a major impact on fashion, especially on the 1960s and 1970s fashion scene, is Ossie Clark ~ arguably the most gifted British designer of his generation and renowned for his vintage 60s and 70s clothing by present-day designers all over the world. 



As a major figure on the 1960s and 1970s fashion scene and an absolute innovator of those decades’ style, he flew the flag for designs which were smart, beautiful and desirable, producing the most fabulous designs in collaboration with print designer Celia Birtwell. The partnership with Birtwell would last for almost all of Clark's fashion career and in addition to being his undoubted muse (and later, his wife), it was her designs that he used to create his.


When Alice Pollock's exclusive boutique Quorum featured his designs in 1966, Ossie Clark quickly got noticed. Quorum was part of the new London boutique culture. This new and radical retail concept of the ‘boutique’ had a huge impact on the way 1970s fashion was sold ~ and these boutiques, such as Quorum, produced unique and innovative clothing which was often romantic and dreamy while endorsing an identity of individuality, freedom and rebellion which reflected the tastes of the owners and designers alike.


b2ap3_thumbnail_ossie-clark-1970s-fashion-70s-clothing.jpgClark’s design style in the mid 60s was heavily influenced by pop-art, Bridget Riley’s Op-art, David Hockney (whose iconic portrait ‘Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy’ hangs in London’s Tate Gallery) and Hollywood glamour ~ and he’s undoubtedly renowned for his vintage 70s clothing: exquisite, flowing maxi dresses in fabulous colours and bold flower prints, smocks in chiffon, and sleek halter-neck dresses, bold and pain or in stunning patterns. His love of blissful, muted colours and moss crepe fabric was also well known ~ and adored ~ as was his fondness for Fortuny-style pleats on dresses and coats. (Fortuny was an early 20th century Italian designer, experimental and innovative, who hand-crafted pleats of fine silk which held their shape and flowed on the body. No one has been able to recreate pleating as fine, or dresses that have held their shape so perfectly, for many years. Indeed, Fortuny’s dresses are now seen as skilled works of art ~ as are Clark’s designs ~ and many survive, still pleated, in museums and personal collections all over the world.).


In the late 60s and especially in the early 70s, Ossie Clark hit a rich vein with his flamboyant 60s and 70s clothing. Dubbed "The King Of King's Road", his clients were beautiful and famous and adored his exquisitely tailored and sensual pieces, and Ossie’s list of clients featured such iconic peers as Julie Christie, Twiggy, Penelope Tree, Marianne Faithfull, Talitha Getty, Mick and Bianca Jagger, Jean Shrimpton, The Beatles, Elizabeth Taylor, Liza Minnelli, Marc Bolan and Jimi Hendrix ~ to name but a few. He dressed, in the most beautiful and flamboyant 70s clothing, the rich and famous who inhabited the ‘beau monde’ of late 1960s and early 1970s London, while his popularity also extended to New York cool and Paris chic.




b2ap3_thumbnail_ossie-clark-1970s-fashion-70s-clothing-1.jpgIn 1967, Clark presented his first fashion show under the patronage of Radley, a seminal turning point in the history of fashion shows ~ his initial London collection was the first British fashion show to feature black models. In1968 he designed the first of many diffusion lines for Radley. The label ‘Ossie Clark for Radley’ would make his coveted late 60s and early 70s clothing available to a high street clientele and here he found another very appreciative audience who again adored his 70s outfits with as much desire as his couture clientele.


ossie-clark-1970s-fashion-70s-clothing-4.jpgAside from the obvious attraction and desirability of his sought after creations, his genuine appreciation of the female form ~ and an inherent understanding of how women wanted to look and feel ~ gave an enviable yet admired credence to his work and played a huge role in the popularity of his 70s outfits, from his sensual maxi dresses to his languid trouser suits.  His great idol was the famous dancer Nijinsky, and his love of dance inspired his clothes to be free moving and unrestrictive to the female form, a style that became very popular in 1970s fashion thanks largely to the esteem and influence of Clark's clothing.


ossie-clark-1970s-fashion-70s-clothing-3_20140503-002455_1.jpgThe sense of idealism, optimism, innovation, experimentation and revolution, in all spheres of society, and which permeated the 60s and 70s, was enhanced by an explosion of creativity and brilliance, and never more so than in fashion. Changing attitudes gave rise to a new-found sense of freedom as society discovered colour, flamboyance and style which liberated a multitude of groundbreaking fashion trends ~ and which translated into innovative 70s outfits which an eager audience of women craved, wanting something different which reflected their desire for new freedoms. Ossie Clark was among the shining lights of 1960s and 1970s fashion designers who left their mark and their legacy with a glorious imprint of definitive dressing that continues to inspire, excite, innovate and endure. His influence can be seen in collections by Marc Jacobs, Prada, Gucci, Anna Sui, Tom Ford and Manolo Blahnik, to name but a few, and his original and collaborative collections remain highly regarded and desired, while the label and its caché continues to thrive. Clark’s glorious fashions fit the contemporary mould while still evoking a particular style idyll reminiscent of revolutionary fashion shapes that typified the all-conquering ‘swinging London’ scene and, as such, are now more favoured and sought after than ever. Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell, among other red carpet celebrities, are among those often seen in his exemplary designs, especially wearing his vintage 70s outfits and vintage evening dresses which are snapped up whenever they are offered for sale, not only to women who want to wear them and feel beautiful, but by collectors as well.


In 2003/04, London’s V&A museum showcased the extraordinary brilliance of Ossie Clark, a designer’s designer who not only dressed the beautiful people beautifully, but whose enduring influence simply can’t be overstated. To quote Judith Watt ~ writer and fashion historian: "He was not just a man of his time...his work stands with the greats”.


Ossie Clark on Pinterest


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designer-leather-jackets-1.jpgMichael Hoban ~ North Beach Leather


Click to buy beautiful vintage leather


“What everybody else calls fashion, I’ve been in forever...” ~ Michael Hoban


Michael Hoban, the founder and designer of North Beach Leather, was one of the first designers in the 1960s to introduce counterculture leather clothing and designer leather jackets to Hollywood’s celebrities. 


Having grown up in 1950s Boston as leader of the Warriors, a teenage street gang, he would later use the gang’s clothing of the time as inspiration for many of his designs ~ (his nickname of ‘Hobo’ found its way into the designs or labels of much of his first sportswear clothing line and some of his designer leather jackets).


Having failed to find any leather bellbottoms in the early 60s, Hoban made his own pattern ~ prompting him to start working with leather ~ and further production of custom-only leather garments led Frank Morgan, his later business partner, to persuade Hoban to open a shop. Soon Hoban was creating entire leather outfits which he sold at his boutique in Los Angeles. In 1967 the small shop moved to San Francisco's North Beach district, from which they took the company name. Another shop then opened in Berkeley, California and as a centre for counterculture in the 1960s, Berkeley provided the perfect atmosphere for Hoban's designs. 

b2ap3_thumbnail_designer-leather-jackets-70s.jpgdesigner-leather-jackets-80s.jpgAs his custom business began to expand, so did his clientele ~ early devotees of his work included luminaries such as Sammy Davis Jr, Frank Sinatra and Jackie Kennedy-Onassis, while Elvis Presley once spent $38,000 on an order of leather capes, trousers and designer leather jackets in one visit. Hoban also made clothes for the Black Panthers and he counted Hell’s Angels among his most prized customers.


He was soon designing custom leather ensembles for the likes of The Rolling Stones, The Beatles, Diana Ross, Elton John, Cher, Paul McCartney and Tina Turner and indeed, it seemed that half the celebrities in the pop and rock world sought the artful biker leather chic he pioneered. As no self respecting rocker’s wardrobe was complete without an obligatory and sexy, leather collection, Hoban’s fabulous designs were ideal for the celebrities of the music and fashion scene of the 60s and 70s. He remained popular with the changing decades and into the 1980s, and his pieces were perfect for the ubiquitous 80s look of big hair and big shoulders and were espoused by celebrity glam rockers and the underground club scene.


The iconic supermodels of the day ~ including Cindy Crawford, Paulina Porizkova, Linda Evangelista, Christy Turlington, Karen Mulder and Tatjana Patitz ~ graced the covers of North Beach Leather advertisement campaigns, and Hoban worked with top photographers from Skrebneski and Herb Ritts to Philip Dixon and Bensimmon, who assisted in creating edgy, targeted and memorable campaigns ~ all of which reflected North Beach London’s position as the largest privately owned leather company in the US.

designer-leather-jackets-60s.jpgNorth Beach Leather's designer leather jackets are bright, bold, beautifully crafted and justifiably expensive, often displaying graphic images in intricate patterns and detailed designs that incorporate such techniques as patchwork, insertions and appliqué. The leather used is always of the highest quality, soft and supple, and the pieces are brilliantly designed and beautifully tailored. This visionary designer not only changed the course of fashion history by inventing elaborate concepts to shape into leather, he also promoted the American leather industry and was significant in encouraging improved methods of manufacture to produce better quality leather in a broad range of colours ~ while continuing to search for ecologically sound ways of refining the raw material to make leather a mainstream fabric within the garment industry.


In the ever-changing world of fashion, Hoban’s style has transcended trends and vintage North Beach styles remain a huge hit with the fashion elite. The vintage military and tuxedo dresses, the biker jackets and the bold and striking bustiers are particularly sought after, while his designs continue to inspire the collections of Michael Kors, Luella et al.


Hoban's vintage pieces have now become very rare to find and are extremely sought after, and just like they were when they were first created, they are still worn and adored by celebrities, rock stars and supermodels to this day... 


Follow Theatre Of Fashion's board Michael Hoban on Pinterest.


Vintage leather jacket ~ Bikers and leather jackets ~ Best Winter Jackets  

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Bohemian style clothing ~ Boho clothing

Posted by on in Styles

Boho ~ Beautiful, Beguiling and Back on Trendbohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing.jpg


Click to buy beautiful vintage BOHO fashion 


The term ‘bohemian’ has gone through many evolutions since its earliest inception (the original Bohemians were travellers from central Europe), and from the adherents of the Bloomsbury Set in the early 20th century to the modern ‘boho’ lifestyle, this term has applied to those who live an unconventional, non-conformist and often artistic lifestyle. It has been attributed to the Pre-Raphaelites, the bobbed hair and cross-gender styles of the 1920s and, of course, to the more recent incarnation that defined the counterculture of the 60s and 70s.


The modern interpretation of the bohemian lifestyle and boho fashion is a continuation of the ethic and the expression which permeated these decades, arising from an era of upheaval to deliver a new-found sense of freedom in fashion trends, mirroring the social movements and the flourishing festival scene of the time. This sense of empowerment and liberation led to a counterculture that was reflected in the mood, the music and the bohemian style clothing. As a lifestyle, it was in such marked contrast to anything that had gone before, and it sat cross-legged and defiant in the midst of an ever-increasing consumerist society and has remained there ever since.


It’s easy to see why the bohemian lifestyle and boho clothing endures in today’s society ~ its core values represent a freedom of spirit; a thirst for knowledge; exploration and discovery through travel; opening up of the mind and body to holistic therapies; being in tune with art, nature and alternative ideologies; a sense of emancipation from the constraints and mores of modern conventions and obligations ~ and a love of loose, beautiful and unrestricted clothing which reflects a look that’s always been at the heart of the hippie vibe.



b2ap3_thumbnail_bohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-7.jpgb2ap3_thumbnail_bohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-6.jpgGorgeously gregarious and bohemian style clothing comes in so many shapes and styles and, whether contemporary or true vintage, its character is unmistakeable: relaxed, casual and often loose and flowing. The bohemian style can be seen in cool, simple whites to explosions of colour and vivacity, and it follows its forebears with tunic tops and tie-dye, vests and waistcoats, kaftans, peasant blouses, flares and culottes, gypsy skirts and magical maxis, scarves, sandals, headbands, beads, fringes and flowers ~ in bursts of clashing prints and patterns; the coolest of cottons, cheesecloth and crochet; vivacious velvets; fabulous florals; Indian prints and ethnic patterns; flowing silks, chiffon and gauze ~ a wonderful boutique of boho clothing which continues to charm and captivate each new generation.


bohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-3.jpgThis homage to a more carefree existence is also expressed in ways that complement boho clothing ~ from espousing multi-culture and travelling (VW camper vans optional!) to the current fashion for 70s retro in terms of décor, interior design and all things vintage ~ this is a lifestyle that continues to thrive. For those unable to immerse themselves completely into a world of bohemian style clothing or are unable to escape the restrictions of the ‘nine to five’, festivals and gigs provide the perfect excuse to embrace your inner hippie and bring out your boho side. The choice is endless ~ from the exoticism and eclecticism of Benicassim, Burning Man, Coachella and Shambhala, to our own home-grown fabulous festivals big and small, nowhere is the phrase ‘anything goes’ more apt when it comes to the most eclectic array of boho clothing. Glorious Glastonbury ~ that annual altar of mud, music and mayhem, sunshine (sometimes) and spirituality ~ sees rock royalty and pop princesses rub shoulders with a cast of thousands in a fashion parade that’s beautiful, bohemian and bizarre...revellers rock in leather, leggings and lusciously long layers of marvellous maxis and cool crop tops, piled up with jewellery and worked with wellies and biker boots. Fabulous!


Many couples are also now favouring bohemian weddings in place of traditional church weddings and opting to wear bohemian style clothing instead of modern wedding attire ~ for an alternative yet natural way of joining together, whether at home or abroad. Imagine beginning your new adventure together at an intimate gathering on a beautiful beach, in a magical woodland setting or under a blanket of sparkling stars...the joy of a bohemian wedding is that there are no rules, and ceremonies often mix themes and cultures, eras and styles and the current desire to wear a vintage inspired dress or a gorgeous original piece as a unique wedding gown is extremely fashionable. From luscious, long bias-cut 30s silk to exquisitely crafted and beaded 20s flapper dresses, to cool, chic crochet creations from the 70s ~ wearing a vintage wedding dress, in classic white or ivory or in beautiful bohemian colours, will make you look and feel magical.


b2ap3_thumbnail_bohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-5.jpgb2ap3_thumbnail_bohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-2.jpgThere’s little doubt that with fashion now looking back to the bohemian era, 70s retro and boho clothing in general has made a celebrated return to the catwalk and the modern wardrobe, and continues to impact on current trends. Designers such as Jill Sander, D&G, Stella McCartney, Pucci, Isabel Marant, Erdem and Alice Temperley have all incorporated bohemian style clothing in recent collections, while Paul Smith has focused on designing the most lust-worthy crochet pieces to bring the original, homespun, and nostalgically adored, hand knitted ‘granny squares’ into the world of couture.


The trend for owning and wearing true vintage pieces continues apace ~ original paisley and Indian prints in sheer cotton gauze and sensuous silk are so sought after, yet these coveted creations fit so well with today’s vintage and bohemian-inspired pieces that have themselves become a very modern trend. Florals are always in, as are fabulously flattering and 

flowing maxi dresses and skirts ~ a classic bohemian style in a timeless shape that will always be aesthetically pleasing. Crochet is big news on the high street this season and spearheaded by fashion hot spot and trend setting Top Shop ~ the behemoth of bohemian style clothing which continues to extol the vintage vibe.


b2ap3_thumbnail_bohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-9_20140501-224443_1.jpgbohemian-style-clothing-boho-clothing-1.jpgA carnival of colours in patterns and prints, from silks to cottons, chiffons to tapestry, wearable art to wallpaper, embroidery to ethnic jewellery, the bohemian influence is now seen on maxi dresses, billowing blouses, scarves, hobo bags, textiles, furniture, crockery and cakes ~ and everything and everyone in between who’s ever been inspired ~ from Florence Welch, Kate Moss, Sienna Miller and Pearl and Daisy Lowe to Annie Sloan and Farrow and Ball.


The bohemian lifestyle (and boho clothing in particular) remains an integral and essential part of modern life. It may have been reworked and reimagined through time and evolution but its original essence and its desire to be different remains. This is a lifestyle and a look that will always be at heart, unconventional, individual, free-spirited and timeless...they say boho is back ~ but for many, it never went away. 





70s outfits ~ 70s clothing ~  1960s Fashion – The Sounds and Styles ~ Bohemian style on Pinterest ~ Wiki

Tagged in: Boho Hippie Summer
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