Look Back in Anger

1970s, Adrian Mann, Angela at London Town, Bermona, Bilbo, bus stop, fifties fashion, flair magazine, john kelly, lee bender, Mr Feed'Em, mr freedom, ravel, Sacha, sheridan barnett, simon massey, stirling cooper, Vintage Editorials

Call it nostalgia, admission of defeat, lack of inventiveness or what you will: the ugly fact is that there is a strong trend among designers to dig up the Fifties for a fashion revival. Those were the days of the A-line, the tulip dress, Lurex and pleated skirts. If you are disturbed at a Fifties revival, so are we. We think it a period in fashion terms best forgotten, with one or two exceptions. If you don’t favour the fashion but fancy the authentic ambiance you’ll get the right idea at Mr Freedom’s restaurant, Feed’em, where we photographed. Here, written about in the Fiftie’s style, are some of the up-dated Fifties fashions on sale now.

At the same time as the Thirties and Forties were being raided by British Boutique designers, so were the Fifties (or Fiftie’s as so spectacularly put here) and it’s pretty hilarious to see the cynicism by the writer here (possibly fashion editor Sarah Drummond) – who had presumably been a young woman then. The cyclical nature of fashion is nothing new and nor is the disbelief when it’s happening in your own timeline!

On another note, it’s always lovely to see some new-to-me shots inside the legendary Mr Feed’em restaurant!

Photographed by John Kelly.

Scanned from Flair, November 1971.

Crepe pencil skirt and pure wool knitted top that you can dress up or down as you please with a clever change of accessories. Button through fastening gives the skirt special new back interest. Skirt £6. Sweater, £4.50 both by Stirling Cooper. Seamed stockings 30p by Aristoc. Black suede and red patent peep toe shoes, Ravel, £5.50.
A flamboyant crepe de chine evening number, in an adventurous chintzy print with snazzy flounced skirt, £10.50 by Sheridan Barnett at Simon Massey. Black suede sandals with ankle straps, Bilbo, £7. Red beaded necklace, Corocraft, 49p. Purple and pink Perspex bangles, Adrien Mann, 30p each.
Smart-as-paint coat that captures all the intriguing fashion points of the season; with a generous fullness at the back. Created in a delightful brown and beige wool blanket fabric. Bus Stop £19.95. Brown leather boots. Sacha £8.99.
Neat ladylike costume in carefree Tricel jersey. The swirling skirt is a-flutter with knife pleats and the short fitted jacket has an optional tie. In an opulent new shade of plum and white, by Angela at London Town £20. Burgundy brimmed felt hat, Bermona, £1.70. Mulberry tights, Mary Quant, 75p. Multi strapped shoes, Mondaine, £11.99.

The Soft Touch

1970s, annacat, Ballantyne, Buckle Under, C&A, coopers, cosmopolitan, Deirdre McSharry, Fenwick, Herbert Johnson, Ian Knipe, Inspirational Images, irvine sellars, Janet Ibbotson, Jasper, jean varon, Jenny Harrington, john bates, John Craig, john kelly, Samm, Spectrum, terry de havilland, The Purple Shop, Trille, Turnbull & Asser, Vintage Editorials
Just the jacket, for interviewing the gardener… if he’s as handsome as Ian Knipe. Trille does the Lady Bountiful bit in yellow and a romantic hat. Jacket C&A £9.95, felt hat by Herbert Johnson, pearls by Ciro. Yellow angora sweater by John Craig, £2.10.

There is a licence to touch all the clothes on these pages. There is not a single trad, scratchy, thornproof tweed among any of the frankly tactile silks, angoras and flannels of autumn. Jerseys and pearls and sensible shoes were once the uniform of the WI. Now, (well) kept ladies whose fingers smell of “Cabochard” rather than cabbage, are pressing their flannel bags, having their pearls restrung and are wearing them with shirts so unbuttoned they could catch pneumonia – and heels high enough to rise above the muddiest farmyard. They are taking to pleated kilts, and cashmere sweaters so tight they’d enliven the dullest game of backgammon. Dinner dresses are back in style, and I do mean back down as far as you can go. Properly and provocatively dressed, a weekend in the country might be more fun than you think.

Hair arranged for all pictures by Carl of Molton Brown.

Fashion by Deirdre McSharry.

Photographed by John Kelly.

Scanned from Cosmopolitan, October 1972.

Give into the call of the wild, but come on softly in silk, angora and flannel. Jenny Harrington sends Ian Knipe slightly wild in her silk shirt, £15, flannel bags £16.50 by Annacat, and angora cardigan, John Craig £5. Fish pendant by Ciro. Ian’s camelhair sweater Ballantyne, £11.50. (Inset: The smoothest tweed in the softest shape will make you want to throw away your old trench. A great way to look for opening bazaars – and coping with Mellors. Coat by Coopers £33, hat by Herbert Johnson, £8.95.)
What would the WI say? Trille lolls about in cashmere sweater, skirt and pearls- -and shoes too high for country lawns. Sweater £11, skirt £30, both by Ballantyne. Pearls by Ciro. Shoes by Samm, £7.50.
Who’s for backgammon? Trille and Jenny get down to it (right) in necklines that ought to fetch the men from their port, on the double. Trille in red jersey dinner dress, John Bates for Jean Varon £16.75, shoes by Terry de Havilland £15.95, pearls by Ciro. Jenny in cream satin shirt by Coopers, £8, and pleated plaid skirt, Gor-Ray f11.95. Red shoes by Samm, £7.50.
The sporting life means quick repairs on the run. Jenny puts back the paint, stays ladylike in powder soft suede and silk. Jacket and skirt by Janet Ibbotson; the jacket costs £38, the skirt £33.50. Silk shirt Fenwicks, £11.50. Jewellery and shagreen compact from The Purple Shop. Shoes by Samm, £7.95.
Long weekends can lead to explosive situations – Jenny ignites something in her cashmere and kilt. Sweater by Ballantyne £13.50, skirt by Gor-Ray £11.95, shoes by Terry de Havilland £15.95. Pearls by Ciro. Ian in ruffled lawn shirt, Turnbull and Asser £11.75, check trousers Irvine Sellars £5.95.
By dawn’s early light a lady likes to relax. Ian wears C & A velvet suit £28; Trille in taffeta skirt and blouse, £5.50 each from Spectrum. Rose 84p from Spectrum. Shoes by Terry de Havilland, £12.99.
The softest touch of all is this mohair sweater (right), and a far cry from the clumpy rustic knits we used to wear. Jenny puts the new country clothes together gently—pink sweater, Buckle Under £12, pink wool skirt, Spectrum £6.95, hat by Herbert Johnson £7.50. Ian’s shirt by Jasper £5.50, check trousers £6.95 by Irvine Sellars. (Inset: Soft again —cream flannel blouse and satin trousers whipped up with beads and roses. Jenny’s blouse £5.50, trousers £5.50, flowers 84p, all from Spectrum. Ian’s blue shirt by Mr Harry £7.65.)

Inspirational Images: These Women Are Dangerous

1970s, cosmopolitan, Inspirational Images, john kelly, vivien neves

john kelly these women are dangerous cosmo may 72

Vivien Neves is every man’s idea (at least twice a week) of what a woman should be, and most women’s idea (some of the time) of what they’d secretly like to be, could be, or – in a few cases – actually are. At twenty-three, Vivien is Britain’s top nude model. She’s the one who got everyone going in the electricity ad, sitting at a dressing table in slip and rollers. She’s the one who advertises cigars on television by slopping about in Caribbean waters in a T-shirt. And she’s the one who appeared full-page nude in an advert in The Times, forsooth – “people haven’t stopped talking about my nipples ever since.”.

Talk about Viven’s nipples must have stopped at some point, but that’s stil quite an achievement! This stunning photo illustrates an article about dangerously attractive women, also including Joan Bakewell and Edna O’Brien (just in case you thought it was all about nipples). Neves, who sadly died in 2003, was photographer John Kelly’s girlfriend at the time (they would later marry) and you can tell by the way he’s photographed her so beautifully here.

Photographed by John Kelly.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Cosmopolitan, May 1972

Legendary Beauty

alice pollock, bus stop, celia birtwell, fashion mouse, janice wainwright, john kelly, ossie clark, pre-raphaelite, quorum, seventies fashion, simon massey, vanity fair, wightwick manor

By Alice Pollock at Quorum*, 19gns. The settee is covered in the original William Morris Bird Design.

There’s a marvellously romantic feeling about the Pre-Raphaelite look. It starts with your hair…soft, natural, framing your face in a ripple of tiny waves. It touches your skin…pale, delicate, un-made-up looking. It colours your clothes…crepe, chiffons and satins in rich hues. Start wearing this great, romantic look today – who knows, he might just start being very romantic to you!

Scanned from Vanity Fair, May 1970. Photographed by John Kelly at Wightwick Manor.

*This is a misattribution, the dress is actually an Ossie.

Dress by Simon Massey, £15. Photographed against a Burne Jones tapestry.

Dress by Fashion Mouse, £22. Photographed against the Kempe stained glass windows.

Dress by Bus Stop, £5. Photographed against a painting by Rossetti pupil Treffry Dunn.