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.
After the systemic strip of the West’s liberated women comes a longing for the romance and mystery of the East. The newest clothes reflect this mood with suggestive gauzes and clinging crepes. We took some to Bahrain, where the women are still heavily veiled and pass secluded lives in the harem.
A textbook example of the trend towards ‘exotic’ inspiration in the fashion world of the late Sixties/early Seventies. Most famously by Thea Porter, of course, but also with lesser known labels such as Suliman and Savita. Another strand of the post-Sixties backlash against the minimal and the space-age, along with the period romanticism of Laura Ashley and the more kitschy retro Rock’n’Roll stylings of Glam Rock.
As an aside, I always feel a little uncomfortable posting these ‘location’ shoots when they involve local characters, because it can feel a little exploitative. But at the same time, I don’t want to censor the past and think it’s important to remind ourselves of how fashion needs to be less exploitative and culturally ‘acquisitional’, even now.
I was also very entertained to note that a variation on the first image was used as part of the hilarious series of Smirnoff adverts and that I scanned back in 2015. There are only a few months between the two and I’m fascinated to know whose decision that was!
Fashion by Cherry Twiss.
Photographed by Sacha.
Scanned from The Daily Telegraph Magazine, 2nd July 1971.
Always happy to bring you another ‘lost’ shoot by the late, great Brian Duffy. Since Duffy destroyed his own archive, we are left to piece together a career from what was published in magazines or retained in other people’s archives. I try to scan and share whenever I can… I covet both Alice Pollock pieces in this spread, and love the man’s style. Definitely how all men should dress, always.
Photographed by Duffy. Fashion by Deirdre McSharry. Modelled by Greta Norris and Cyril Hartman.
Scanned from Cosmopolitan, July 1972.
As an aside, apologies for sporadic blogging at the moment. There are a few changes afoot and it is distracting me a little from my usual magazine scouring and scanning. I will tell you when everything, hopefully, falls into place in the next few weeks.
Silk dress by Suliman, crepe shirt by Deborah and Clare.
Jacket by Alice Pollock, shoes by Sacha
Her skirt by Miss Mouse, blouse and scarf at Lucienne Phillips. His shirt by Lord John.
His and hers Harold Ingram sweaters
Her dress by Clobber, hat by Diane Logan and shoes by Samm.
Her top by Crochetta, trousers by Gordon Deighton. His sweater by Harold Ingram and trousers by Tom Gilbey.
T-shirt by Escalade. Hat from Bus Stop
Blue silk ‘intimate’ dress by Alice Pollock with bird print by Frances Ronaldson. He wears an Indian shirt from Crocodile.