The Airbrushed Room

1970s, airbrushing, Illustrations, interior design, interiors

Airbrushed mural decoration in an apartment belonging to the Tubes pop group.

Photographer and artist both uncredited.

Scanned from The Airbrush Book by Seng-gye Tombs Curtis and Christopher Hunt, 1980.

In a Little Spanish Town

19 magazine, 1970s, Bermona, Brosseau, bus stop, Dolcis, Feathers, Foale and Tuffin, Ian Batten, Inspirational Images, Jean Charles Brosseau, John Bishop, Jolly Boy, kensington market, lee bender, ravel, Rosie Nice, Sacha, Sujon, terry de havilland, Tony Berkeley, Tony Berkley, Vintage Editorials, Willy van Rooy
Long creamy cotton dress by Foale and Tuffin. Blue cotton paisley blouse and skirt by Foale and Tuffin. Embroidered woollen belt around head by Rosie Nice in Kensington Market.

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…

Blonde model is Willy van Rooy.

Photographed by John Bishop.

Scanned from 19 Magazine, July 1970.

Black velour towelling dress by Lee Bender for Bus Stop. Shawl by J. C. Brosseau from Feathers. Green and red snakeskin shoes by Terry de Havilland from Jolly Boy in Kensington Market. Belt bought locally.
Black and white cototn printed skirt and top by Tony Berkeley. Shawl from J. C. Brosseau. Shoes by Sacha.
White cotton skirt, blouse and bolero all by Annie for Rosie Nice in Kensington Market. Bright red and green dress by Foale and Tuffin. Black fishnet shawls by J. C. Brosseau from Feathers.
White towelling hat by Bermona. Dress by Sujon. Shoes from Ravel.
Dress by Tony Berkeley. White patent shoes by Sacha.
Dusty pink skirt and blouse by Ian Batten. Brown felt hat by J. C. Brosseau from Feathers.
Both outfits by Tony Berkeley. Both pairs of shoes by Ravel.
Dress by Foale and Tuffin. Snakeskin shoes by Terry de Havilland at Jolly Boy. Belt bought locally.
White midi skirt by Lee Bender for Bus Stop. Red and white silk rayon blouse by Annie for Rosie Nice. Mock snakeskin shoes by Dolcis.

Lose Your Head to Scent

1970s, Erté, Illustrations, Vogue

We asked Erté to draw for us his notion of the essence of scent, its evocative powers, and its sensations. The picture arrived with a note ‘Enclosed my design ‘Un parfum à perdre la tête‘ “. Every bottle must lose its head, for you to lose yours.

Illustration by Erté.

Scanned from Vogue, June 1973.

How Original!

19 magazine, 1970s, Antiquarius, biba, british boutique movement, Chelsea Antiques Market, Christian Larroque, Emmerton and Lambert, Essences, Essenses, Hair and make-up, Inspirational Images, jenny kee, MEE Designs, Ricci Burns, Sacha, susan marsh, van der fransen, Vintage Editorials

In this age of mass-production, finding clothes that have an individual look is becoming more and more difficult. But a few enterprising minds in London have got round the problem by buying old clothes, in beautiful prints that one doesn’t see these days, and remaking them in today’s styles. Though the styles are repeated, the materials are different and each garment is quite unique. If you don’t live in London, don’t despair. Look around for a clever seamstress who can copy the styles for you. Then, it’s a matter of combing jumble sales, or looking among granny’s cast-offs, for unusual prints. Don’t, however, cut up clothes in good condition. You’ll get a good price for these in London markets. And if you do come to London, go round the markets instead of the stores and boutiques – there’s a lot to be picked up!

An extraordinarily styled and photographed editorial featuring Van der Fransen, Emmerton and Lambert and Essences, all of whom were trailblazers in the world of vintage and recycled fashion.

This shoot also manages to answer two of my most frequently asked questions: what is your favourite editorial and what do you think the future of fashion will be. The former is probably a moveable feast, although this one is definitely up there with my other favourite, but the latter is still something I believe strongly. Especially in a post-pandemic landscape, I am not sure (and definitely hopeful) that we will ever see the same levels of mass production post-2020. Not for want of desire by the high street shops, but because people have maybe recognised that, actually, they don’t need armfuls of cheap synthetic, single-use garments. Perhaps the aesthetics and principles of these recyclers of the Sixties and Seventies will finally be adopted as our default? We could stop producing new clothes and fabrics right now and probably never reach the end of the piles of recyclable materials. And that’s not even taking wearable vintage garments into account. Do you feel your shopping habits have changed permanently?

Red wig by Robert at Ricci Burns.

Photographed by Christian Larroque.

Scanned from 19 Magazine, July 1972.

Beautiful old sun dress in rayon crepe and silk from Van der Fransen. Tights and shoes from Biba.
Navy and white smock in various prints of rayon crepe and skirt both by Van der Fransen. Tights and shoes by Biba.
Intricate patchwork dress and long skirt from Emmerton and Lambert. Green tights and mauve shoes from Biba.
Jenny Kee of Emmerton and Lambert at Chelsea Antique Market, wearing a Chinese kimono and trousers from a selection at Emmerton and Lambert. Model wears a blouse made up of old scarves in satin and silk from a selection at Emmerton and Lambert. Gingham shoes from Biba. Photographed at The Terrace Cafe, Chelsea Antique Market.
Slinky cross cut dress in various printed crepes and crepes de Chine from Essences. Blue tights and mauve shoes both from Biba. Scarf from Essences.
Patchwork dress of old printed fabrics from a selection at Emmerton and Lambert. Tights and gingham shoes from Biba. Plastic dragonfly at neck from Susan Marsh.
Spotted two piece from Essences. Tights from Biba. Shoes from Sacha. Lovely old shawl from Essences.
Navy blue and white print smock with contrasting sleeves by MEE Designs. Jeans from Browns. Clogs by Sacha. Photographed at MEE Designs at Antiquarius.
White satin Twenties style dress by MEE Designs at Antiquarius. Tights and shoes from Biba.

Peasant in the Sun

1970s, Bata, Bermona, biba, Britannia Land of Plenty, Buckle Under, chelsea cobbler, clobber, Diane Logan, Elliott, hampstead bazaar, Inca, laura ashley, Marielle, mary quant, miss mouse, Pamela Dennis, petticoat magazine, rae spencer cullen, ravel, Richard Green, Roger Charity, Russell & Bromley, Souk, Splinters, Sue Hone, van der fransen, Vintage Editorials
Mary Quant pinny worn over cheesecloth dress at The Souk. Britannia Land of Plenty silver armband. Buckle Under hat. Ravel shoes / Cheese cloth shirt and matching skirt by Richard Green. Woolworths hairnet. Buckle Under hat. Russell and Bromley shoes.

Summer’s peasant clothes come in brightly frilled cotton or in soft layers of cheesecloth with a bazaar of sunny straws and beads.

Fashion by Sue Hone.

Photographed by Roger Charity.

Scanned from Petticoat, 6th June 1972.

Souk pinny. Calico shirt with starry ribbon trim from Splinters. / Embroidered smock at Inca. Richard Green cheesecloth skirt. Waistcoat from Inca. Ravel suede sandals.
Miss Mouse seeksucker dress. Diane Logan boater. Biba false flowers. / Miss Mouse gingham dress. Bermona straw boater. Chelsea Cobbler wedge sandals.
Embroidered dress by Souk. Buckle Under Bowler. Britannia Land of Plenty shoulder bag. Elliotts sandals. / Midi skirt and cheesecloth dress at Souk. Inca wool belt. Buckle Under crochet cap. Bata sandals.
Long embroidered skirt with gathered waist from Hampstead Bazaar. Cheesecloth top by Clobber. Embroidered beret from Britannia Land of Plenty. Elliotts sandals. Straw bag from Inca. / Long checked cheesecloth dress by Marielle. Glass flower brooch from Van der Fransen.
Laura Ashley skirt. Calico smock by Pamela Dennis. Forbidden Fruit belt. / Laura Ashley top and skirt. Silk shawl from Britannia Land of Plenty. Shoes by Ravel.

Flora Exotica

19 magazine, 1970s, Adrian Mann, David Anthony, Ferrer Y Sentis, Inspirational Images, Ivory, jap, Joseph, kenzo, Lo Roco, Mrs Howie, Sacha, stirling cooper, Taramina, Vintage Editorials
Floral print dress with lace-up front by Stirling Cooper. Pink shoes by Ivory.

Floral prints are bursting out all over. Add these to crepe de chines, cotton and cotton jerseys and, suddenly, you have the most colourful summer of all.

Photographed by David Anthony.

Scanned from 19 Magazine, June 1977.

Floral print dress with lace up sides by Lo Roco. Gold shoes by Sacha.
Palm print one shoulder t-shirt dress by Ferrer Y Sentis from Joseph.
Shocking pink and yellow bikini by Mrs Howie. Floral skirt by Taramina. Blue shoes by Ivory.
Floral printed lace up dress by Lo Roco. Bangles by Adrien Mann.
Yellow broderie anglaise t-shirt and bright pink floral skirt. Both by Jap at Joseph. Pink shoes by Ivory.

Last Tango in Tijuana

1970s, antony price, che guevara, Dinah Adams, Dolcis, gillian richard, granny takes a trip, Herbert Johnson, Honey Magazine, Ian Batten, Inspirational Images, jean junction, Martha Hill, miss mouse, polly peck, rae spencer cullen, Roy A. Giles, Russell & Bromley, Samm, Spectrum, stirling cooper, Vintage Editorials, wallis

If you can’t tango, simply steal into the spotlight in these flamboyant rumba dresses. The slipped shoulder strap, the bared midriff and the full-blown flouncy skirts all spell out the sexiest numbers for summer.

The main difference between the content of a magazine like Honey, as opposed to Vogue or Queen, is that the designers tend to be the more intriguing and less well-known of the period. If you want names like Miss Mouse, Granny Takes a Trip or Antony Price, these magazines should always be your first port of call. This shoot alone features one of my Holy Grail pieces by Granny Takes a Trip: the ruffled tie front top and skirt ensemble designed by Dinah Adams. Previously a designer for two other cult London boutiques, Mr Freedom and Paradise Garage, painfully little is known about Dinah Adams (misattributed as ‘Diana’ in the original credits). Which is why it’s always lovely to see her work represented anywhere.

Also shown here is a frothy, frilly delight of a frock by Miss Mouse, a.k.a Rae Spencer-Cullen. A personal favourite of mine, the Miss Mouse aesthetic is precisely why this early Seventies period is my favourite for fashion. Her work was heavily Fifties-inspired, quite ahead of the curve in the scheme of things, but always with a novel twist. Spencer-Cullen is yet another designer whose life remains something of a mystery, despite being a part of a hugely influential circle which included artists Duggie Fields and Andrew Logan. It seems that this anonymity was (at least initially) intentional, as an article from the Glasgow Herald in 1976 declared.

“At first, six years ago, when presenting her quirky designs on fashion, she seemed shy and utterly retiring. Miss Mouse could not be contacted easily by the press. She was elusive, hazed in shadows, a real mouse about publicity in fact. The only evidence of her entire existence was her clothes.”

In a world where we are so used to having information at our fingertips, there is something quite enchanting about this; tiny scraps must be stitched together to create a flimsy silhouette of a creative genius.

Photographed by Roy A Giles.

Scanned from Honey, July 1973.

(Please note – this blog originally appeared in 2016 on Shrimpton Couture’s ‘Curated’ blog project which has since been removed. It seemed a shame to let the posts disappear completely so I hope to eventually repost all my work here.)

Rose-strewn wrapover cotton bolero and long frilled skirt from Spectrum. Raffia and cotton tie belt by Herbert Johnson. Right: Tightly ruched off-the-shoulder top and long skirt with deeply riched waistband from Wallis.
Ritzy ruffled satin bolero top with frilled skirt by Dinah Adams for Granny Takes a Trip. Wavy leather sandals by Samm. Right: Slinky spotted Tricel dress by Ian Batten at Stirling Cooper. Crackly taffeta long flounced skirt by Antony Price for Che Guevara. Wooden and patent sandals by Russell & Bromley.
Flouncy black and white gingham off-the-shoulder dress printed with orange and lemon flowers by Gillian Richard. Canary yellow sandals by Samm. Embroidered cummerbund by Herbert Johnson.
Swirling striped cotton skirt by Jean Junction. Off-the-shoulder pleated blouse by Martha Hill. Polished leather boots from Dolcis.
Black cotton ruched and flared rumba dress printed with multi-coloured flowers and birds by Miss Mouse. Apple green shoes by Russell & Bromley.

Left: Crisp cotton gingham blouse and flounced skirt both by Martha Hill. Oval bead choker and bangles by Paul Stephens. Right: Ruffled cotton check blouse and tiered skirt by Polly Peck. Cummerbund by Herbert Johnson. Shoes by Russell & Bromley.

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.

Calico Futures

1970s, Adrian Mann, Andreas Heumann, Averil B, Badges and Equipment, bus stop, chelsea cobbler, Colette Nivelle, Corinne Bricaire, Country Casuals, Crochetta, Dorothy Perkins, Dunhill, Edy Lyngas, Fiorucci, French Connection, Inspirational Images, Ivory, jap, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, jeff banks, Joseph, Kasparian's Contracts, Kenneth Grange, Lawrence Corner, Leah Hertz, lee bender, Midas, Mulberry, Pierre D'Alby, Sacha, Steve Rothholz, Sun and Sand, Vintage Editorials
Woven waistcoat ,cotton trousers and towelling lined calico jacket, all by Corinne Bricaire from Browns. Necklace from Adrien Mann. Belt from the Mulberry Company. Flat canvas sandals from Sacha. Headphones from Leisure Sounds of Wigmore Street.

The time: mid-morning coffee-break The place: The Post Office Confravision Studios, Euston Tower* The clothes: At last, working gear (you’ll be delighted to see) to cope with both formal and permissive working environments. The fabric: calico, strong and hard-wearing, cotton-based, so it’s comfortable for over-heated offices. Add a dash of towelling, team it with crocheted string vests, scarves, tights and bags for a little wit. The colour: cream—soothing and harmonious for worn executives. Enliven it with a touch of colour here and there (and to pick you out from beige office walls — remove if you need the camouflage).

* One of five office studios provided by the Post Office for its conference-by-TV service. Designed by Kenneth Grange of Pentagram.

An incredibly apposite photoshoot featuring the Post Office’s futuristic ‘Confravision’ studios. To read an original brochure, click here.

Photographed by Andreas Heumann.

Scanned from Over 21 Magazine, April 1976.

Cream short sleeved shirt, quilted waistcoat, cream jacket and trousers from Country Casuals.
Cream skirt and jacket by Jeff Banks from Averil B, Fulham Road. Scarf by Edy Lyngas. Canvas espadrilles from Sacha.
Calico jumpsuit by French Connection. Vest from Lawrence Corner. Leather bound hessian purse by Lee Bender for Bus Stop. Belts from the Mulberry Company. Stack of chairs from Kasparian’s Contracts Ltd, 288/290 Euston Road.
Strapless shorts suit by Jean-Charles de Castelbajac from Joseph. Silver table croquet game from Dunhill.
Cream tube dress by Leah Hertz from Crochetta. Trousers by Jap from Jap & Joseph. Chelsea Cobbler shoes. Cigars from Dunhill.
Cream sweater by Ivory from Roberta, 94 Golders Green Road. Cream calico tabard by Colette Nivelle from Elle. Calico trousers from Dorothy Perkins. Suede espadrilles from Midas. Bracelets by Adrien Mann. Gilt soda syphon by Dunhill.
Cream short sleeved t shit by Sun & Sand from Conspiracy, 170 Kensington High Street. String vest from Badges & Equipment, The Strand. White shorts from Laurence Corner. Calico jacket by Pierre D’Alby. Clear plastic braces by Steve Rothholz from Fiorucci. Watch by Trafalgar.

Smell-a-Vision

1970s, Honey Magazine, Illustrations, Lynn Gray

Illustration by Lynn Gray accompanying an article about smell.

Scanned from Honey magazine, May 1975.