Ossie Vamps it Up – But Superbly

1970s, celia birtwell, flair magazine, Inspirational Images, kari ann muller, manolo blahnik, ossie clark, Peter Rand, quorum
Long dress with side pleats and sash tie at back, in black marocain flower print, red poppies at the neck.

OSSIE CLARK, twenty-nine, designs clothes that would be right up the street for the woman whose profession is the oldest in the world. There’s nothing Woman’s Lib. here, thank you. His twelfth collection is outlandishly, gloriously and candidly tarty. But tarty in the ’40s and early ’50s sense of dressing: brazen, glamorous, passion-ately female. The cut of the clothes is masterful. The old black magic is there. Jazzy sequins. Star insets. High wedge heels. Ankle straps. Bias cut crepe. Oodles of pleats. Blowsy tulips and full-blown poppy prints. Plus black, and lots of it. You name it—it’s there, superbly executed.

Fabrics include new prints on marocain by Ossie’s wife, Celia Birtwell. Hairdos evoke memories of Rita Hayworth & Co. And contours are as they should be: breasts (bra-less), waists, hips and bottoms are all back in their rightful place — and proud of it. Ossie’s new clothes are as scarlet womanish as they are beautiful and witty. When you wear them you automatically adopt a Monroe wiggle.

Top price for a frock from his collection is £150, but around a fiver will buy you a printed crepe shirt. You may not be able to take this look seriously — but it will probably influence the way you dress next season. For Ossie’s secret as a designer is that his tarty vamps keep chic and never look cheap, jaded, or just plain common.

Photographed here are a selection of Ossie’s new clothes.

All enquiries for stockists and prices to Quorum Wholesale, 6 Burnsall Street, SW3.

Modelled by Kari-Ann Muller.

Hair by Richard at Maximillian.

Shoes by Manolo Blahnik for Zapata, 49 Old Church Street, SW3, from £17.75.

Photographed by Peter Rand.

Scanned from Flair, August 1971.

Red and green strawberry embroidery on black crepe Oxford bags, matching waistcoat and jacket and red blouse.
A Long, black, marocain dress side pleats, printed with pink and green begonias.
A black marocain multi-coloured flower print dress with suede halter bib trimmed with ric-rac.
Red, blue and green poppy and daisy print on black marocain hour-glass dress.
Red crepe off-the-shoulder dress (with strawberry embroidered 11″ jacket, not shown).

Shades of Autumn

19 magazine, 1970s, art deco, celia birtwell, francois lamy, Hair and make-up, Ingmari Lamy, Inspirational Images, karl lagerfeld, Make-up, ossie clark, quorum, Revlon

We’ve tried to capture the golden richness and mellow nuances of a well-preserved old oil painting, and create our October face with the new Moody Hues make-up from Revlon’s Natural Wonder collection. Face tone should be warm and tinged with a hint of tan, and we used foundation colour ‘Bisque Beige’, 66p., dusted over very lightly with translucent pressed powder in the ‘Medium’ shade, £1.02. We rouged the cheeks with Cheek Shine in ‘Red’, £1-32. Pursuing the same rustic-toned theme we chose ‘Soulful Plum’ mascara and lashed it on both top and bottom lids, 85p. Eyes are a muted melange of ‘Tortoiseshell’ Eyeshadow Stick, 66p., and the same shade in Lid Lights, the powder version, fading to complementary ‘Minty Green’ powder shadow just under the brows, £1.10 each. We dabbed over the eyelids with ‘Brown Shine’ cream blusher for extra gloss and softness, £1.32. Lips are outlined in ‘Bracken Brown’, 62p.

Model is Ingmari Lamy.

Make-up was applied by visagiste Jean Duval of Revlon, Paris.

The beautiful décolleté dress with huge winged sleeves is in black with a yellow, red and blue feather print, from Quorum, £24.

‘Forties-style hair was dressed by Tina of the Jean-Louis Davide Salon in Paris.

Photographed in the apartment of Karl Lagerfeld, the designer, by Francois Lamy.

Scanned from 19 Magazine, October 1971.

Summer at Source

1970s, biba, celia birtwell, Emmanuelle Khanh, gerald mccann, Herbert Johnson, ingrid boulting, Inspirational Images, norman parkinson, ossie clark, Suliman, Vintage Editorials, Vogue
Tiger lily silk dress 31gns at Biba.

Following Gaudi’s thought “to be original, return to the origin”, following it down to Lacock Abbey in Wiltshire where William Fox Talbot invented the camera, Norman Parkinson photographed eight dresses conjured from pure air and gauze.

This is like an album where every song is a certified banger. From the model, to the frocks, to the photographer, to the photographer he’s referencing, everything is flawless. Except that I don’t own all these dresses.

Photographed by Norman Parkinson.

Modelled by Ingrid Boulting.

Photographed at Lacock Abbey.

Scanned from Vogue, July 1970.

Silk gauze in pale straw with green and mauve. By Ossie Clark, Celia Birtwell print, about 25gns.
Silk chiffon dress in Celia Birtwell print by Ossie Clark, £40. Cap at Herbert Johnson.
Flower garden dress of crisp muslin. By Gerald McCann, £16 5s. 6d.
Black printed Indian cotton dress 10gns at Suliman.
Blackberry on black Indian cotton dress by Gerald McCann, £16 5s. 6d.
Silk chiffon dress in Celia Birtwell print by Ossie Clark, £40.
Fish finned cotton dress by Emmanuelle Khanh, about £30 to order.

Maudie James in Ossie Clark

1960s, barry lategan, celia birtwell, hair, Inspirational Images, maudie james, ossie clark, quorum, vidal sassoon, Vogue

Maudie James in an Ossie Clark for Quorum silk chiffon dress with print by Celia Birtwell.

Illustrating ‘The New Hair Colour Story’ with hair by Christopher of Vidal Sassoon.

Photographed by Barry Lategan.

Scanned from Beauty in Vogue, 1969.

WHAT KIND OF GIRL ARE YOU?

19 magazine, 1960s, alistair cowin, annacat, biba, bus stop, celia birtwell, Daniel Hechter, Foale and Tuffin, fulham road clothes shop, guy and elizabeth, hung on you, Inspirational Images, jean varon, john bates, Lawrence Corner, lee bender, liberty, liberty's, lilley and skinner, Maxwell Croft, ossie clark, Pierre D'Alby, quorum, ravel, Roger Nelson, Ronald Keith, sally levison, Stephanie Farrow, Susan Handbags, sylvia ayton, wallis, Weathergay, zandra rhodes
Cancer: Long Victorian styled dress with high neck in coffee cotton lace trimmed with white, by Annacat, 25gns.

Whether you believe in star signs or not, this lovely editorial is certainly fun to browse. Pretty happy with my Cancerian Annacat dress, modelled by Stephanie Farrow, but greatly envy the Aries and Scorpio threads.

(Also, please don’t shout at me about the furs. I don’t like them either but it would be weird to leave out Leo and Aquarius. Just pretend they’re fake…)

Photographed by Guy and Elizabeth

Scanned from 19 Magazine, January 1969.

Leo: Red fox knee length coat by Maxwell Croft, 259gns. Red wig from Beyond The Fringe.
Virgo: White jersey dress with brown snakeskin shoulders and belt by Sylvia Ayton and Zandra Rhodes, approx 8gns. Mottled chiffon scarf from Liberty. Brown leather boots by Lilley and Skinner, £6 19s. 6d.
Libra: Long brown crepe dresswith medieval claret-coloured velvet sleeves by Roger Nelson at 94, 9gns.
Scorpio: Metallic blue leather jacket with zip front by Ossie Clark for Quorum, 25gns. Chiffon scarf by Biba, 18s. Red jersey trousers by Wallis, £3 19s 11d. Leather boots by Lilley and Skinner.
Sagittarius: Fake horse jacket with leather elbows and trim, by Daniel Hechter for Weathergay 15gns. Herringbone trousers by Alistair Cowin at Grade One, £3 19s. 6d. Beige ribbed sweater 4½gns. Matching beret, 39s 11d. Both by Sally Levison Originals.
Capricorn: Beige rayon crepe trouser suit by Foale and Tuffin, 20½gns. Pink chiffon scarf by Biba, 18s 9d. Brown leather brogues by Ronald Keith, 6gns.
Aquarius: Maxi fur coat by Barbara Warner for Fab Furs, 150gns. Black hat by Biba, 25s. Worn underneath, black maxi jersey dress with snakeskin waistband by Sylvia Ayton and Zandra Rhodes, approx 8gns.
Pisces: Beautifully cut white raincoat by Foale and Tuffin, 16½gns. Boots to order by Ravel Studio, 19gns.
Aries: Brown suede fringed waistcoat, £7, with matching printed moccasins, £2. From Hung On You. Deep red satin blouse by Biba, £2 15s 6d. Brown cord trousers by Alistair Cowin at Grade One, 5gns. Narrow headscarf by Celia Birtwell for Quorum, 1gn.
Taurus: Blue rayon georgette, high-waisted dress with baby ribbon trim by John Bates for Jean Varon, 13gns.
Gemini: Green army surplus hat, 9s. 9d., and beige jacket, 11s. 9d., both from Lawrence Corner. Beige gabardine knickerbocker suit, by Pierre D’Alby, 14gns. Brown stockings from Mary Davies, 35s. Brown leather brogues by Ronald Keith, 6gns. Shetland Fair Isle beret, 25s. and scarf, 29s. 11d. by Lee Bender at Bus Stop. Leather shoulder bag by Susan Handbags, 7gns.

Ossies in Adverts: Babycham

1970s, babycham, celia birtwell, cosmopolitan, Inspirational Images, ossie clark, Random Ossies in Adverts, Vintage Adverts

Another in my [very] occasional series, Random Ossies in Adverts.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, July 1974

Be Wilder Still

1960s, alice pollock, celia birtwell, Illustrations, ossie clark, petticoat magazine, quorum, Richard Evans

be wilder still

Ever been to bed in satin or gone to work in lizard, looked through chiffon or wore a cardigan to your knees? Well we haven’t either, but Grandmother might have. The Ossie Clark and Alice Pollock Autumn Collection was full of these new things from old. Quorum clothes have a habit of being way ahead of their competitors and you always have to pay for originality. Even if you can’t afford to buy there they point the way ahead so look hard. There were maxi-length tweed coats in pinks and greens, long suede suits with lizard insets. Skirts and trousers were long and flowing, blouses were in flouncy chiffon or giselle. There were butterfly dresses in flimsy chiffon, with streams of flowing scarves tied to the ankles or wrists. There was a mass of creamy satin made into long quilted coats or glamorous trouser suits. There were satin dressing gowns with matching pants and bra. Also flowing crêpe suits with satin trimmings, tight-knitted jumpers flecked with stripes of bright colours. And more and more….

Sadly some of the prices were wild too but the ideas are yours for the copying.

A perfect example of why the demise of the illustrated fashion editorial was so unjust.

Words by Sue Hone. Illustrated by Richard Evans.

Scanned from Petticoat, November 1968.

Crêperie

1970s, Adrian Mann, Bata, Boobs, bus stop, celia birtwell, Honey Magazine, Inspirational Images, lee bender, Linda Warren, manolo blahnik, mary quant, moss crepe, ossie clark, quorum, radley, ravel, Rose Bradford, Roy A. Giles, Uncategorized, universal witness, Vintage Editorials, zapata

creperie1

Poppy field morocaine dress with drawstring neck by Ossie Clark for Radley. Plaited suede sandals by Bata.

Flirty little crêpe dresses so irresistibly feminine you’ll never be alone for long.

Anyone who knows me at all will know that *I* cannot resist crêpe, never mind what a fella thinks. This is a stunning editorial, with a model I’m not sure I recognise from anywhere else – so do comment if you can identify her. Featuring two covetable dresses by Ossie Clark but also featuring two by the mysterious ‘Boobs’ boutique label (by designer Linda Warren). I have found mention of a ‘Boobs’ boutique in Edinburgh, but I think it might just be coincidence. Again, holler if you know anything!

Photographed by Roy A. Giles.

Scanned from Honey, November 1971.

creperie2

Daring slash necked lemon and lime striped Dicel crêpe dress with paste brooch by Linda Warren at Boobs. Suede plaited shoes by Bata. Tights by Mary Quant.

creperie3

Chocolate brown Dicel crêpe dress with wide accordian pleated sleeves gathered into deep buttoned cuffs by Linda Warren for Boobs. Scarlet and black scalloped shoes by Ravel. Red art deco compact from Universal Witness.

creperie4

Skimpy jet black halter neck bonded moss crêpe dress with pink and black polka dot fluted bolero jacket by Rosy Bradford for Quorum. Scarlet glacé leather peep toe shoes from Zapata. Flocked red cherries by Adrien Mann.

creperie5

Button-through bow-scattered gently flaring crêpe dress from Bus Stop. Black sude sandals by Bata.

creperie6

Slippery satin dress with palm tree printed bodice by Ossie Clark for Radley. Scarlet leather peep toe shoes by Zapata.

Clothes to raise his temperature

1970s, Adrian Mann, Andre Ledoux, Bernshaw, celia birtwell, christian dior, cosmopolitan, Electric Fittings, jeff banks, ossie clark, Russell & Bromley, Suliman, Uncategorized, yves saint laurent

Clothes to raise his temperature 7

Playsuit and skirt by Ossie Clark for Radley. Shoes from Russell and Bromley.

An incredible editorial, photographed in and around Nice. I dream of returning to Nice with a wardrobe full of these frocks…

Photographed by Bill King.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Cosmopolitan, November 1973.

Clothes to raise his temperature 1

Cire raincoat by Andre Ledoux. Peeptoe shoes by Saint Laurent. Sunglasses by Dior.

Clothes to raise his temperature 2

Forties dress by Jeff Banks. Perspex shoes from Russell and Bromley.

Clothes to raise his temperature 3

Dress by Bernshaw. Fur coat by John Bates for Austin Garritt. Shoes from Russell and Bromley.

Clothes to raise his temperature 4

Lurex dress by Mary Quant. Shoes by Saint Laurent.

Clothes to raise his temperature 5

Tie back jumpsuit by Electric Fittings.

Clothes to raise his temperature 6

Silk dress and jacket from The Suliman Shop.

Honey, you’ve gone too far!

1960s, celia birtwell, Francis Ford, Honey Magazine, Inspirational Images, James Moncur, John Craig, Michael Berkofsky, ossie clark, quorum, Steve Hiett, steven hiett, Susan Barry, Trille, Vintage Editorials

honey you've gone too far 1

The gist of this editorial seems to be that only the tinest breasted ladies can wear the Ossies, but I have to respectfully and fundamentally disagree. The Ossie tunic on the cover was, along with some matching trousers, later chosen as The Fashion Museum‘s Dress of the Year 1969.

Blonde model photographed by Mike Berkofsky.

Brunette model photographed by Steve Hiett.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Honey Magazine, November 1968.

honey you've gone too far 2

Fluffy frilly blouse by Quorum.

honey you've gone too far 3

Tunic by Ossie Clark.

honey you've gone too far 4

Red chiffon blouse by John Craig.

honey you've gone too far 5

Ruffled black dress by Francis Ford.

honey you've gone too far 6

Low, plungey-neck dress in red satin by James Moncur.

honey you've gone too far 7

Black crepe sleeveless dress by Susan Barry.