The clothes of the Thirties were capricious, narcissistic and extravagant — the jazz of the Twenties turning soft, like swing – but with the wartime Forties they necessarily became austere and functional.
To compensate, the details kept their extravagance – shirred waists, sweetheart necks, floppy sleeves, Veronica Lake hair.
On this and the following pages we have a minor Forties revival – minor because these clothes are strictly 1968, when women want to dress both practically and frivolously.
I do not endorse this copy, because I would not agree about the clothes of the Thirties being ‘narcissistic’, but I do endorse the photos and the clothes.
It looks as if England has lost Jane Birkin forever … she is firmly entrenched in Paris with baby Kate, nanny and the lovely Serge Gainsbourg, living in sombre luxury in their newly acquired house. The interior is stark and dramatic, every room is decorated in black and white, with white doors and black marble floors or carpet. The furniture is also black and white—there’s a big black shiny piano in the lounge, and a black mink cover adorns the bed which is raised off the floor on a black perspex dais. Weekends are usually spent at a quiet retreat in the country, making a sharp contrast to the busy social life that they lead during the week. Since Jane landed in France she has never stopped working. Film after film has been completed and the success of the record she made with Serge, which was also written and composed by him, Je T’Aime … Moi Non Plus, has led to an LP also written by Serge. Her life is chaotic and busy, it seems as if the telephone never stops ringing. People phone her every day with offers of interviews and films, the next of which is still a closely guarded secret. It was whilst she was making her first film in France, Slogan, that she met and fell in lovewith Serge, an event which seems to have altered her life but through it all she remains the same—a waif of a girl, tall and lanky, in pullover and jeans, serving tea out of her treasured English teapot. Her wardrobe is noticeably small, consisting mainly of casual clothes like pullovers, T-shirts and jeans; with the occasional gipsy-type dress reserved for the evening and worn with gold chains, loop earrings and gipsy belts. She acquires most of her clothes by chance buying, rarely by intentionally setting out on a spending spree. Usually she just spots something she likes in a shop window and ends up by going in and buying it. In London she shops mainly at Countdown, Foale and Tuffin, and Quorum. She buys her jewellery from the Chelsea Antique Market. In Paris she favours the more trendy designers like Mia and Vicky or Jean Bourquin. Jane is perfectly happy spending hours hunting about in antique shops for interesting little knick-knacks, like the 18th-century doll’s house which she gave to her Serge for Christmas.
Sunny Spain conjured up visions of hot summer days in picturesque surroundings, ideal settings for 19’s summer fashions. And we had a fantastic oppotunity when 4S Travel arranged a trip to Malaga and Torremolinos. We flew BUA Super Jet to stay at the Hotel Al Andalus, within easy reach of the mountains overlooking the Costa del Sol. Here we discovered quaint villages, sun-drenched and white-washed, their customs and dress crystallised in the past. No cars to be seen, only mules and donkeys. Our clothes echoed the feel of these places – colours stark black and white, brightened with touches of gayer hues, clean hot printed cottons, soft peasant blouses, sandals, light fishnet shawls, casual sun hats. The garments are easy to take care of, and enhance a tan – midi skirts that button to above the knee and give alluring glimpses of brown thigh, and large brightly printed squares of fabric which can be used as shawls, or skirts tied at the side.
Making me yearn for a proper holiday. The closest I’ll get is looking at this editorial whilst sitting on the balcony, trying to avoid all humans for the time being. I hope it brightens your day as well…
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…)
Rich renaissance colours in velvet, lace and crepe reflect the mood for Christmas. Emphasis is on the shape of the body – necklines plunge, backs are bared, and skirts are slit in a demure, but wanton, fashion.
Black panne velvet hat from Feathers. Exotic black floor length beaver-look Borg fur fabric coat by Ossie Clark at Quorum.
The title of this editorial reminds me of being in Dublin earlier this year. Just arrived, walking along trying to find our hotel, I was wearing a Seventies brown nappa leather trench coat (it was February and freezing). A girl strode past and without pausing to wait for a reaction or looking me in the eye she just said ‘Great coat’ and carried on walking. I decided I loved Dublin right there and then.
This spread features the stunning Charlotte Martin and was photographed in Austria. I’m still in love with my brown leather trench coat but I wouldn’t say no if any of these coats (particularly that Quorum stunner above) were to land in my lap this winter…
Photographed by John Bishop.
Scanned from 19 Magazine, December 1970.
Black panne velvet hat by Feathers. Long chocolate jersey top with tight buttoned cuffs. Grey and rust mock Gonk shoulder cape. Both from Biba.
Hat from Feathers. Dark brown and black Forties-style mock chipmunk jacket with self tie belt. Black wool pants with turn ups. Both from Biba. Wet-look boots from Dolcis.
Plum Borg-lined jacket with leather elbow patches and trimmings by Daniel Hechter of Paris. Green barathea midi skirt by Gladrags. Tan leather leace up boots from Russell and Bromley.
Plum felt hat from Feathers. Pure wool shirt. Skirt in different prints panels of pure wool. Pure wool paisley printed waistcoat lined with fake fur. All by Foale and Tuffin. Browny-plum wet look lace-up boots from Dolcis.
Brown felt hat from Feathers. Brown Borg zip-front coat with tie belt by Marielle. Brown lace up boots by Dolcis.
Mock hamster pull on hat from Biba. Chocolate Shetland sweater by Hogg of Hawick. Suede gauchos from Bus Stop. Mock hamster wrap over coat from Biba. Lace up boots from Dolcis. // Mock hamster pull on hat from Biba. Black crepe shirt by Poole at Shape. Mock hamster belted jacket from Biba. Black velvet gauchos from Bus Stop. Lace up boots from Dolcis.
Mid brown Shetland sweater by Hogg of Hawick. Chocolate Borg-backed fly fronted jersey jacket with hood, cuffs and patch pockets by Weathergay. Black jersey knickerbockers with bootslace ties by Angela at London Town. Brown wet look boots by Dolcis.
Brown panne velvet hat from Feathers. Chocolate Shetland poloneck sweater by Hogg of Hawick. Suede gaucho pants from Bus Stop. Brown striped hooded floor length wool coat lined with fur fabric by Foale and Tuffin. Belt from Bus Stop.
Wonderful in white… snowy crepe, sleeves long and ringed with Irish thread work. By John Bates at Jean Varon. Jewellery by Adrien Mann. Man’s shirt to order from Thea Porter.
Photographed by Paul Orssich.
Scanned from Vanity Fair, November 1968.
Glamorously Grecian… pure white crepe, beautifully braided. By Young Ideas at Rhona Roy. Jewellery by Adrien Mann. Man’s black braided suit is from Just Men.
Beautiful in black seductive plunging rayon jersey. By Foale and Tuffin. Jewellery by Adrien Mann. Shoes by Lilley and Skinner. Man’s evening suit and shirt all from Take 6.
Stunning in satin… timeless dress as bewitching as a glimmer of midnight. By Bernard Freres. Man’s velvet jacket from Take 6. Man’s be-ruffled shirt from Kleptomania.
Perfect in pink… sugared almond crepe falling soft to the wrist and waist. Designed by Anne Tyrrell at John Marks. Jewellery by Adrien Mann. Man’s red velvet jacket and silk scarf from Trend at Simpson.
Reassured in red. Skimmy shaped wool crepe party-goer cut away at the shoulders. By Sujon. Jewellery by Adrien Mann. Man’s evening suit and polo shirt both from Club 92.