The Party Dazzlers

1970s, Alana Collins, Anne Turkel, biba, Blades, bus stop, corocraft, cosmopolitan, Dana Gillespie, Deirdre McSharry, edina ronay, Eva Reuber-Staier, Feathers, Fiona Lewis, Hildebrand, Inspirational Images, jeff banks, just men, mary quant, Nancy Bleier, norman eales, Peter Bubb, Peter Finley, platforms, polly peck, Sally McElvin, sandie shaw, Stephanie McLean, terry de havilland, Vintage Editorials, yves saint laurent
Dana Gillespie, the bosomy (43 in., actually) Mary Magdalene in Jesus Christ Superstar, is the most modest of party girls. At the show’s opening night party she turned up in her old gipsy skirt and a t-shirt, happily flashing her gold and jewelled snake rings. “Sometimes I feel like being outrageous – I just wish there were more parties to entice me out. When I was on my own I went to parties to see more people so I wouldn’t be on my own.” Alone only for the picture, Dana wears her snake collection, backed by a velvet dress and jewelled jacket, designed by her friend Sally McElvin. Pop designer Sally makes one-offs only, from £20.

In the words of Noel Coward, every girl ought to be able to say the morning after, “I’ve been to a mah-vellous party.” A little champagne does not go amiss, but this winter the clothes alone will put a gleam in your eye. There are enough sequins, crystal beads and glittering fabrics to guarantee you are the star attraction. To clinch the deal, I’ve asked some of the most stunning party girls around to give their definition of what constitutes a marvellous party and to put the most dazzling party frocks to the test…

Fashion by Deirdre McSharry.

Photographed by Norman Eales.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, December 1972.

Ann Turkel is the 5ft 10in. tall New Yorker who steals the limelight from the stars at film premieres, so parties are just kid’s stuff. “Parties? That’s when I know no other woman in the room can ‘top me’. I make a real effort – my mother has dresses made up specially in New York and ships them over – I never wear the same dress as any other woman. I know I’m a success when the photographers start crowding me. I like a man who appreciates when you are looking great.” Ann, who likes to move in a cloud of Youth Dew by Estee Lauder, comes on diamond bright in sequins and taffeta. Jacket by Biba £20. Red dress by Mary Quant £12.60.
Eva Reuber-Staier is the ex-Miss World turned TV personality who helped present BBC1’s Animal Stars. She’s cool, poised and gregarious. “I love parties, the kind with pretty girls and clever men. I prefer big parties; there’s more of a choice. I got to at least two parties per week.” The best one she says was given by some Cambidge dons. “Clever, but sexy with it, and could they dance!” Would she make the first move if she fancied a man at a party? “Fortunately I don’t have to.” Cleverly draped, sexy dress by John Bates for Jean Varon £36. Roses by Spectrum. Shoes by Terry de Havilland £13.99. Pop singer Gary Hamilton, star of Hair and several horror films says, “It’s the quiet girls who catch my eye.” Gary in satin trousers by Blades.
Alana Collins is tall, blonde and blue-eyed. “At parties back home in Nacogdoches, Texas, the boys used to call me the Duchess because I love to get dressed up. That was the original one-horse town, but in London I still like to cause a stir. There’s such a variety at parties – long and short hair. I go for the man who is paying total attention to one woman. And if you give him all yours, that clicks.” A lady who watches her strategy. Alana is the perfect Cosmo party girl in pink draped jersey by John Bates for Jean Varon £27. Sheos by Yves Saint Laurent £19.50.
Sandie Shaw sings for her supper. Her husband Jeff Banks, designs for his. United on most fronts, the Banks are divided on parties: “I hate them,” she says. “I love ’em,” he leers. Then they go on remember half a dozen great parties they’ve given including one in a char-a-banc to Southend; another on a river boat and a third at Madame Tussauds. “My idea of a good party is mostly fellas,” says Sandie, “but I don’t like him to look posh. The thing is, he loves me dressed up.” Dolled up for “that great party no one ever seems to give,” as Jeff says, is Sandie in a Banks special, suitably glittery in green and gold gauze. Sandie’s hair by Smiles. Jeff’s clothes by Blades.
Nancy Bleier, a bouncing brunette model import from Milwaukee, prefers her parties on the small size. “Just a few intimate friends, a quite dinner and dancing at Tramp or Annabel’s,” says Nancy who keeps her party figure by taking modern dance lessons. Nancy makes her eyes up like Sophia Loren, wears a lot of scent and generally sticks to trousers at parties. “My French boyfriend says: ‘Darling why don’t you ever wear a dress?’ He offered to buy me one – but never did.” Not downcast, Nancy dresses up for Swiss model Reto in a 1000 watt lime glitter outfit from Biba, top £14, skirt £15.25. Reto’s dinner suit from Just Men, £45.
Edina Ronay, the actress and model says: “A good party is when Warren Beatty murmers ‘call me tomorrow’. Actually the best parties are the ones I give myself – straight and freaky, champagne and – uh – cakes. The people look at each other and enjoy the difference. What happens afterwards – that’s what counts about parties.” Edina, who had her hair hennaed in Morocco, gets ready for her Christmas party in crushed pink velvet and feathers. Dress by Biba £15, boa and ‘diamond’ ring by Bus Stop, £6.50 and £1.95. Robert wears sequined jacket by Dior and ruffled shirt by Just Men.
Stephanie McLean, at 5ft 10in., is the kind of status blonde most men hope to meet at parties. And it was at a party where her husband, a photographer who specialises in nudes, met her. Says Stephanie, “Now when we go to parties we separate – otherwise why bother to go out at all? – but I keep my eye on him. I prefer relaxed, informal parties and almost always wear jeans. Sometimes I get dressed up and he says ‘you look fantatic, we’ll go out.'” Looking dressed up in a glittery silver and black taffeta dress by Polly Peck £12.85. Peter Finley the model who prefers parties for two, wears black satin trousers from Blades.
Film actress Fiona Lewis has the sophisticated face of the Seventies, so it’s not surprising that her idea of a party is simple – and expensive. “Lots of drinks and lots of people, never punch which is a bore and bad for your digestion. Simple things like smoked salmon and chilled white wine are best. And I prefer to wear fantasy clothes which I run up myself from scarves. I ask dishy men and tell them to bring their friends.” Fiona adds her own glitter to a black and white taffeta halter dress, Hildebrand about £18.50 and also a floating red chiffon dress aove right, at Feathers £25. Peter Bubb the model wears velvet dinner jacket by Just Men £35.

On the rocks

1980s, harpers and queen, helmut newton, Inspirational Images, Vintage Adverts, yves saint laurent

Saint Laurent Rive Gauche advert photographed by Helmut Newton.

Scanned from Harpers and Queen, March 1983.

Left Bank Flowers

1970s, Bugat, Inspirational Images, Vintage Editorials, Vogue, yves saint laurent
All clothes by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche

Here the Saints go dancing by – bright frills, dotty prints, dancing lengths. Can this be strict Saint Laurent? The only black is a belt, a pair of wedge sandals; all the rest are new summer cottons, crepes, voiles, poppied like so many hay fields, spotted with colour, put with brilliant legs and purple espadrilles.

I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling like this is my default fashion mood for Spring/Summer 2019. Must hunt down red tights…

Photographed by Bugat.

Scanned from Vogue, May 1971

All clothes by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche
All clothes by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche
All clothes by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche

April Flower Evenings

1970s, belinda bellville, bill gibb, Gina Fratini, Inspirational Images, john bates, oliviero toscani, Rayne, Richard Sharah, Sue & Helen, thea porter, Toscani, Uncategorized, Vintage Editorials, Vogue, yves saint laurent, zandra rhodes

April Flower Evenings 6

Primrose silk georgette camisole top and handpainted satin jacket by Bellville-Sassoon.

Delicate flower evening dresses, in silks and chiffons… Beauty far beyond the English flower garden…

Photographed by Toscani. Make-up by Richard Sharah.

Scanned from Vogue, April 1975.

April Flower Evenings 1

Honey coloured silk dress by John Bates. Sandals by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

April Flower Evenings 2

Silk chiffon by Zandra Rhodes. Pink sandals by Rayne.

April Flower Evenings 5

Banana silk georgette printed with apricot flowers by Yuki.

April Flower Evenings 4

Pale peach silk chiffon with sheer sleeves by Thea Porter.

April Flower Evenings 3

Snow orchid chiffon by Sue & Helen. White sandals by Rayne.

April Flower Evenings 7

Drift of frilled white silk organza printed with snowdrops by Gina Fratini. Sandals by Rayne.

April Flower Evenings 8

Blackberry printed organza by Gina Fratini.

April Flower Evenings 9

Cream lace jacket and skirt by Bill Gibb.

April Flower Evenings 10

Palest pink silk chiffon by Bill Gibb.

Go To Blazers

1970s, alistair cowin, bus stop, david montgomery, Electric Fittings, gala, Inspirational Images, lee bender, Vintage Editorials, Vogue, yves saint laurent

go to blazers 1

Heavy red cotton blazer, red bows on white voile shirt, blue check shorts, all by Electric Fittings.

Five looks gone to blazers here, five separate ways to be wearing them all summer through – with baggy Oxford bags, check shorts, short trousers, pleated skirts. Other best things to go with blazers are fake flowers, cloche hats, shady straws, veiling, hair nets, print shirts, a bevy of built up shoes. Go get a blazer.

Photographed by David Montgomery. Modelled by Gala Mitchell.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Vogue, May 1971

go to blazers 2

Long double breasted white cotton brocade blazer, fuchsia velvet cloche, petrol green crepe pleated skirt, all at Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

go to blazers 3

Navy denim blazer, navy, ivory and scarlet plaid seersucker bags, white polka dot scarlet acrylic shirt, all at Bus Stop.

go to blazers 4

Navy denim blazer pin striped extra fine, white with navy stripe trousers, both by Alistair Cowin.

go to blazers 5

Champagne satin blazer in bow print, blue print Chinese alphabet short dungarees, both by Electric Fittings. Sandals and tomato tights at Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

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.

Enigma Variations

1970s, Butler & Wilson, charles jourdan, harpers and queen, Inspirational Images, Packy Cannon, Piero de Monzi, Vintage Editorials, yves saint laurent, zandra rhodes

enigma variations - packy cannon - 1

Dove grey crepe edge to edge jacket. Dove grey crepe mid-calf skirt. Pink silk shirt with finely pleated collar. All by Zandra Rhodes.

Zandra Rhodes has come up with a brand new collection for her brand new shop at 14a Grafton Street, W1. Using crepe and pure silk, in muted colours – grey, black and bois de rose, and always with her characteristic love of detail, she has produced immensely wearable clothes to see you through the day, and into the evening.

Photographed by Packy Cannon.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Harpers & Queen, July 1975.

enigma variations - packy cannon - 4

Bois de rose pleated v-neck top and narrow silk cord tie-belt. Bois de rose wide crepe trousers with one lily type pocket in pleated crepe. Both from Zandra Rhodes. Peach leather sandals by Charles Jourdan.

enigma variations - packy cannon - 5

Cream silk shirt with finely pleated collar. Bois de rose crepe mid-calf skirt with pockets in panels of finely pleated crepe. Both from Zandra Rhodes Sling back wedge sandals by Charles Jourdan.

enigma variations - packy cannon - 2

Black finely pleated crepe v-neck top with cap sleeves and silk cord tie belt. Black crepe ankle-length skirt. Both from Zandra Rhodes. Shoes by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

enigma variations - packy cannon - 3

Floor length black crepe dress with buttoned cuffs. From Zandra Rhodes. Shoes by Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

Startling new goings on…

1970s, brigitte bardot, Chris Clyne, cosmopolitan, Simpson of Piccadilly, Vintage Adverts, yves saint laurent

simpsons 78

Co-starring Leslie Phillips in a shameless ‘let’s stick it to the old guard’ gesture. Intrigued by the mention of ‘Brigitte Bardot’ as a brand name, can anyone enlighten me?

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Cosmopolitan, May 1978.

Black Looks

1970s, bus stop, John Bishop, lee bender, Over 21, Richard Sharah, yves saint laurent

black-looks-over-21-december-75

Black cire top by Lee Bender from Bus Stop. Coin earrings by Rive Gauche.

Photographed by John Bishop.

Make-up by Richard Sharah.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from.Over 21 Magazine, December 1975.

The thin end of the wedge

harpers and queen, Inspirational Images, shoes, Steve Hiett, yves saint laurent

the-thin-end-of-the-wedge-steve-hiett-harpers-and-queen-january-1975Brilliant red patent leather sandal with suede straps thonged in patent. By Saint Laurent Rive Gauche.

Photographed by Steve Hiett.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Harpers and Queen, January 1975.