Flat Power

1970s, Barbara Carrera, cosmopolitan, Elyse Lewin, interior design, interiors

You might be short on space, but that’s no reason to skimp on imagination in doing up your own place. “Studio flat, one bed, kitchen and bath, ch, pleasant aspect.” That’s the kind of accommodation most of us want when we look for somewhere to live in the big city. And the metal windows, featureless walls and skimpy dimensions are liable to be standard whether you call it a flat and you’re in London, or Liverpool, or it’s pronounced “apartment” and the address is Beverly Hills, Los Angeles. Case in point is the one-bedroom pad, shown on these pages, of Barbara Carrera, Nicaraguan-born model and actress. The plethora of ruffled pillows, jungle of greenery and vast coffee table indicates the Hollywood influence, but you don’t need to be Liz Taylor to aspire to mirror tiles on your wall to expand a poky bedroom. The Californian passion for pale colours, low sofas and casual arrangements of objects suits the English climate, too. Wicker mania is also rampant here in the UK, hence the boom in shops that sell basketware of every kind. Barbara must have bought a job lot of laundry baskets which she mounted in two tiers. These now hold her TV set, record player, art books and some of the jungle greenery. The mirror walls make the basket shelves look double the amount, but the initial investment in six strong cane baskets is a fraction of shelving bought by the yard. Bonus: you can take the baskets with you when you decide to move elsewhere.

Barbara is celebrating her first part in a film—she plays Victoria in Embryo opposite Rock Hudson—hence the purchase of the wall-hanging “TAKE ME TO YOUR LEDA” seen over her bed. But if, like Barbara, you can handle a paint brush, why not splash out your own abstract art like Barbara’s picture hanging over the sofa ? Most working girls don’t have the space for a dining area. Barbara gives intimate dinners—never more than four—in the corner of her living-room where two peacock chairs flank a small round table. Make one yourself from a round plywood top balanced on a metal plinth finished off with fabric skirt.

The all-over printed batiks have the freshest look in printed fabrics with the correct ethnic feeling. Models like Barbara who jet round the world can pick up Indonesian sarongs, embroidered Greek cushions and Navaho rugs in the Country of origin at airport shops as well as in the authentic souks and bazaars. Happily, anyone with a day ticket can find the same merchandise in the clutch of ethnic shops in Pimlico, Covent Garden and Hampstead. Beautiful kangas, batiks, or baskets, shells. Oriental china and wall-hangings can be seen at one of the newest sources, Rain (late Klong and Roots and Shoots), Pimlico Road, London SW1. A wind-bell to tinkle at the window and a dozen or so green plants (don’t forget a decorative watering-can and plant mister are available at Conran, Draycott Avenue, SW3, which also stocks handsome cane furniture) will complete your private Oriental fantasy. We can’t all be movie stars, but we can all afford some of the comforts of Hollywood.

Photographed by Elyse Lewin.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, November 1976.

The night before

1970s, cosmopolitan, lingerie, loungewear, miss selfridge, Vintage Adverts
Looking great, feeling fine. In soft, silky nightdresses exclusive to Miss Selfridge.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, November 1974.

“Whatever she selects has taste…”

1970s, alice pollock, british boutique movement, cosmopolitan, ossie clark, quorum, Random Ossies in Adverts, Vintage Adverts

Obviously I do not condone the message as regards the product being advertised here, but what an amazing, ephemeral capture of the Quorum boutique window with Ossies on both the model and the mannequin (‘Bridget’ and ‘Cuddly’ respectively). I also think that might possibly be the ghostly figure of Alice Pollock in the background.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, November 1973.

In The Mood

1970s, charnos, cosmopolitan, james wedge, lingerie, Sarah Moon, Vintage Adverts

Stunningly photographed advert for one of my favourite lingerie brands Charnos, who collaborated with Ossie Clark and Sally Tuffin on ranges in the Seventies.

Photographer sadly uncredited but I’d say James Wedge or Sarah Moon are likely candidates.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, November 1976.

I’ve crossed a few bridges since I discovered Smirnoff

1970s, cosmopolitan, smirnoff, Vintage Adverts

It is now my life’s ambition to find all of these! See more here. I’m particularly enjoying the ostrich feather and vaseline-smeared lens scenario of this one.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, August 1974.

Had any good dreams lately?

1970s, cosmopolitan, Illustrations, John Walsh, mild sauce

Illustration by John Walsh.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, July 1975.

Clothes that help you hang on to your money

1970s, Alex Chatelain, Ambalu, Browns, Burtons, bus stop, Butler & Wilson, chelsea cobbler, cornucopia, cosmopolitan, Elle, Flight Studios, janet reger, jap, John Craig, Joseph, kangol, Kickers, Knitcraft, lee bender, mr freedom, mushroom, Pattie Barron, Shelana, Spectrum, stirling cooper, Vintage Editorials
Chinese satin top and pants by Ambalu. / Thirties lingerie set by John Craig. Satin panties by Janet Reger. Necklace from Butler and Wilson.

First-job salaries can present problems when you’re not used to juggling the rent around a new skirt or sweater. But there are ways—as you’ll see on these pages—of looking not just good, but positively great on a tight budget. Learn the rules of the “looking-good-on-a-little” game . . . remember that one pair of pants at £10+ will outlive two pairs that split whenever you sit down; that washable fabrics mean you’ll have no cleaning bills. Learn how to bleach and dye, starch and press properly—so you’ll be able to match vest tops and T-shirts to your new longer flowery skirts and keep them looking fresh. Invest in beautiful leather shoes: they last and look good if polished every day. Spend more on accessories —sometimes—than a new dress. Build your wardrobe around two or three colours—as crazy as you like—and find jolly extras to pull it all together. . . . This may be the summer you always wear a hat. Here is my choice of nine outfits . . . chic, very wearable and all cheap at the price. That’s fashion knowhow.

Fashion by Pattie Barron.

Photographed by Alex Chatelain.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, July 1974.

Crepe de Chine suit at Bus Stop. Vest from Browns. Hat at Jap and Joseph. Flowers and shoes from Elle. Bag from Flight Studios.
Crepe de Chine suit at Bus Stop. Vest from Browns. Hat at Jap and Joseph. Flowers and shoes from Elle. Bag from Flight Studios.
Skirt and top by Stirling Cooper. Aran cardigan from John Craig. Raffia wedgies from The Chelsea Cobbler. Kangol beret.
Knitcraft top. Shorts by Stirling Cooper. Shoes by Kickers. His outfit from Burton’s.
Vest by John Craig. Shelana skirt. Shoes by The Chelsea Cobbler. Hat from Spectrum.
Crepe dress by Mr Freedom. Ostrich feather boa from Cornucopia. Man’s suit from Jap and Joseph.
Candy stripe cotton halter dress by Mushroom.
Stripey top and plain trousers from Bus Stop. Beret from Kangol. White leather bag from Flight Studios.

He was a very civil servant

1970s, cosmopolitan, smirnoff, Vintage Adverts

Thought I’d treat you all to my new favourite in the legendary series of Smirnoff adverts. As today is my birthday, and we’re still in lockdown, a recreation of this will have to take place at home tonight rather than on holiday as I’d hoped. Cheers!

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, July 1974.

Some Like It Cluttered

1970s, cosmopolitan, david bowie, interior design, interiors, kevin whitney, Lorenz Zatecky, luciana martinez de la rosa
It takes more nerve than money to achieve this level of decorative clutter: Kevin and Luciana at home.

Contessa Luciana Martinez dela Rosa and Kevin Whitney, Esquire don’t sound like your average suburban couple. So it’s not sur-prising that they don’t live like one. And unless you share their passion for flea market decor, feathers around as well as under the bed, lace curtains that make for romantic gloom, and a bed that is bigger and obviously better used than the kitchen, you might not fancy their life-style either. You cannot but admire it, though. This talented couple clearly thrive in the hot-house atmosphere; they are not married, though Kevin couldn’t be more domestic : “He’s the cleaning lady,” says Luciana firmly. Better still, he also does the cooking.

Kevin, a painter, has exhibited in Turin and New York, as well as in London; his pictures are in a vivid, realistic style which fetch approximately £1,500 each. The subject is, as often as not, Luciana; her portrait, ranging from life- to poster-size, is the focal point of every room.

Luciana designs in beads which she makes into shimmering mermaid hats, wigs and exquisite pictures. She also draws in a strong style of her own. “Kevin works in oils, I work in pastels,” she explains. Two people with such a definite life-style clearly have a great deal in common. Kevin says: “We’re each other’s best inspiration.”

Luciana, as the model-in-residence, can pose at a moment’s notice; her walk-in wardrobe of flea market and second-hand clothes is hung in racks with gloves, scarves and hats carefully arranged on top. Black stockings tangle with lace shawls on the testers of the brass bed. “I wear black or red, turquoise in the summer, and when I’m tanned I’ll wear my purple silk Scarlett O’Hara crinoline gown. I like feathers and poppies in my hair, adore hats, and ‘Thirties satin nightgowns, but I don’t bother with underwear.”

Each room is carefully arranged around its use. Luciana’s museum of clothes forms a shifting collage in the blood-red bed-room (Kevin says: “She woke up one morning and said I’m going red—I got up a ladder . . . and we did”). They have a studio each and the materials of their work are laid out in patterns. On one wall is pinned the front page of the Daily Express showing them making a stylish entrance to an Andy Warhol party.

Everywhere there are notes, scraps and photographs of their almost equally decorative friends; David Bowie, for instance, who is a chum as well as patron. A shell on a shelf, the placing of a peacock feather, the way a length of silk is thrown over a lamp makes a statement. Even when claustrophobia sets in, the eye is caught by new ways of presenting objects. The flat has been put together on a modest budget; Woolworth’s kitsch co-exists with arts deco and nouveau. Nothing costs more than a few pounds, except for the bed which cost £50.

Although Luciana explains the enclosed atmosphere (the lace that keeps out the views of West London) with the remark that she doesn’t much like the world outside, there are times when they long to escape the trendy gloom and clutter. Then they go. He to New York or Italy, she to the Seychelles. Says Luciana: “I need some tropicality in my life. When I’m away I love the out-doors, riding a motor-bike, lying in the sun. But I always come home . . .” Home is where the dust is, even for this exotic pair.

Photographed by Lorenz Zatecky.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, May 1976.

Portrait-in-progress of Luciana dominates Kevin’s studio.
Luciana’s hats double as decoration.
..and her brass bed displays her shawls.
Hot-house living-room with arch, poppies and shawl – all in red.

Create a Tropical Heatwave

alkasura, Ara, Baltrik, Browns, Buckle Under, cosmopolitan, Deirdre McSharry, Dorothy Perkins, Emesse, Inspirational Images, jean varon, john bates, Laetitia, Lida Ascher, mic mac, norman eales, oliver goldsmith, outlander, Park and Warriner, Sacha, Vintage Editorials
Lime knit jacket by Outlander. White crêpe trousers by Ara. Ascher cotton scarf.

Oh to be out of England now that April’s here, and whether you are planning on Majorca, the far-flung Bahamas or the Isle of Wight this year, now is the best time to shop for holiday clothes. And having just stepped out of a QANTAS jet that took Cosmo island-hopping via Bermuda to the Bahamas, I have a slight tan and a strong feeling that summer’s fashions will be as refreshing, bittersweet and highly coloured as that tropical drink, Planter’s Punch.

Oh to be anywhere but home, quite frankly. I shall have to recreate these styles on the balcony and dream of even going as far as the Isle of Wight…

All jewellery by Adrien Mann. Fashion by Deirdre McSharry.

Photographed by Norman Eales.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, April 1973.

Sundress by Mic Mac. Scarf by Ascher.
Vest from Dorothy Perkins. Trousers by Alkasura. Sunglasses by Oliver Goldsmith.
Striped cotton outfit by Buckle Under. Shoes from Sacha. / Cotton separates by Baltrik.
Dress by John Bates for Jean Varon
Lemon yellow knit dress by Park and Warriner.
Cheesecloth outfit by Laetitia at Browns.
Top by Emesse. Trousers by Ara.