All the top beauty talent is currently colour-crazy – and we’re very much for it; it’s a fabulous enlivener of the grey winter scene. Your party look could be a variant of any of the gloriously off-beat ideas you see here – and anyone who considers green lips unnatural might dwell, briefly, on the knock-you-down naturalness of bright plum or orange ones.
Vanity Fair, December 1971
Please excuse the daft title. This amazing Annacat dress is so brilliant and ruffled and exotic it can’t help but make me think of the divine Ms. Carmen Miranda. Not that it will immediately make you look like her, I hasten to add, unless you wear some fruit on top of your head. Although you may wish to, and I would certainly applaud you if you did. Anyway, here’s my occasional blog about some new listings of mine. There’s the aforementioned Annacat, a Jeff Banks for Clobber dress, Ann Reeves & Co, Pam Hogg, Janice Wainwright for Simon Massey, Miss Mouse, Joy Stevens, Polly Peck, Kati at Laura Phillips, Paraphernalia, Mary Quant, Petals and Concept by Samuel Sherman. Phewwwww. That’s a lot of gear.
My most recent Lovefilm rental was a film I’ve been dying to see for years: Two for the Road starring Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney. I can safely say that it did not disappoint and I remain baffled as to why it wasn’t more successful at the time, or why it hasn’t been re-evaluated as a classic in the years since. I suppose it is mainly a lack of familiarity; when was the last time it was shown on’t’telly?
One reviewer explained the possible contemporary drawback that Audrey Hepburn was a much more established Hollywood star in 1967, and someone like Albert Finney would have seemed a terrible upstart to have equal billing opposite her. It doesn’t help that his character is a dominant, aggressive, opinionated Alpha male, and she is as delicately beautiful and softly spoken as always. That isn’t to say that her character is a washout, far from it, but in analysing a marriage across its entire lifespan, you will certainly see the worst sides of both parties. And the phrase ‘a bit of an arse’ was created precisely for a man like Mark Wallace.
The rhythm of the film is deliciously undulating and swervy, which is dictated by the fact that it is a road movie and that it switches between several different time periods through its entirety. You see how the couple first meet, how they fall in love, how they survive youthful poverty, pregnancy, the changing fortunes of their lives (and how these, perversely, make them unhappier), their dalliances, how they seem to be falling out of love. In fact, it shows every nuance of a complex relationship in snippy vignettes from several holidays, each involving a long journey across France. You never see their home, but you really don’t notice and certainly don’t need to.
It is also notable for Hepburn’s wardrobe, which is provided by a host of swinging young designers (Foale and Tuffin, Mary Quant, Paco Rabanne, Ken Scott etc…) and perfectly places each time period. You know where you are when her hair is long, and her beatnik jumper is red, or when her hair is perfectly coiffed into a Vidal Sassoon cut and her clothes are mod perfection.
You’ll laugh, if you’re anything like me you’ll cry, and you’ll fall ever more in love with Audrey and Albert. There’s even an early Jacqueline Bisset appearance. Definitely a ‘must see’, in my opinion.
Have you ever had that feeling, that tight feeling in your chest when you think about all the various things you are required to do in a short space of time. It paralyses you, and makes the situation ten times worse. I suffer from this unnamed syndrome. Sometimes it causes me to be a bit behind in updating my website. I would hate for anyone to think that I’m lazy or too busy living some incredible jet-setting lifestyle. I mean, I would like to be doing the latter, who wouldn’t? But the truth is more boring than that.
Anyway, this week has somehow generated a flurry of website listings, and I thought I ought to share them with you. They include: a very, very rare piece of Bus Stop history in the form of a bright pink felt hat, an incredible Annacat prised from my personal collection in an attempt to regain control of my living space (this ambition is perpetually unfulfilled), an adorable printed cotton Horrockses dress, one of the most fabulous John Bates dresses I’ve seen and a super sexy emerald green lurex halter top by Mary Quant. But that’s just the big guns. There’s plenty of other pieces to tempt your tastebuds (I hope).
mid Sixties hot pink and gold shot matelasse shift dress late Fifties floral and stripe printed cotton sundress by Horrockses early Seventies maxi dress with unusual cross-stitch print bodice by John Bates for Jean Varon Late Sixties psychedelic maxi dress by Annacat early Seventies lime green high-waisted flares by Simon Massey
If this were my spring capsule wardrobe, I’d be one very contented lady…
Not only did Mary Quant invent the mini*, the duvet cover*, tights*, make-up*, the bread bin*, hotpants* and pvc clothing*, but I can now exclusively reveal that she also invented…
…the vitamin pill!
From October 1968
*All nonsense in my opinion, but I have only “made up” one of them. I’ll leave you to decide which one…
I’m currently avoiding the cold (and the general public) by working on some gorgeous new listings, including Biba, Janice Wainwright, Marie France and many more, and immersing myself in my beloved clothes, films, tv and music – like some strange, velvet-clad hobbit.
Thankfully, gorgeous people like Laurakitty are on hand to point me back towards the amazing person on Youtube who has access to footage from the German programme ‘London Aktuell’ and a whole host of seriously groovy easy-listening music of the era. I posted about this a while back, but hadn’t realised some new editions had been posted. Utterly droolworthy the lot of them, and containing precious footage of Carnaby Street, the King’s Road and Kensington High Street. ‘Scuse me while I dribble…
One of my favourite Petticoat spreads, from September 1971, which I haven’t scanned in full before (why? I have no idea….). It was photographed at the Hard Rock Cafe in London, and published a mere three months after it opened (June 1971). The Hard Rock was a different beast back then, the memorabilia which would later become such a huge part of its identity was a later addition and quite haphazardly acquired to begin with.
Isaac Tigrett (later to marry Maureen Starkey, whom he would often introduce as “My most authentic piece of rock and roll memorabilia.”) and Peter Morton opened their American-style diner in an old Rolls Royce dealership on Park Lane. It became an instant hit with their musician and music-loving friends. They could come along, post-gig, for a hit of fast food, good company and a relaxed atmosphere. The decor developed from eclectic Americana into iconic music memorabilia, as various musicians donated their old instruments and clothes to their beloved Hard Rock diner.
‘So Clapton got to be friends with the proprietors and asked them to save him a regular table, put up a brass plaque or something. And the young proprietors said, “Why don’t we put up your guitar?” They all had a chuckle, and he handed over a guitar, and they slapped it on the wall.
No one thought much more about it. Until a week later, when another guitar arrived (a Gibson Les Paul, by the way). With it was a note from Pete Townshend of The Who which read: “Mine’s as good as his. Love, Pete.” ‘
From the official Hard Rock website.
This photoshoot is a rare insight into how the Hard Rock would have looked when it first opened and before it acquired its now legendary status and worldwide domination.
It’s also packed full of glam rock, British Boutique goodness and is almost as delicious as a Hard Rock Apple Cobbler….
Shorts have been with us for some time now – “hot pants” making even starlets front page news – but the big question was whether they were here to stay, or were just a gimmick. Increasing sales seem to show that they are really catching on, and now the big stores are stocking them. For those with the youth and legs to enjoy them, we bring the very latest designs.
I can’t believe I’ve never scanned this before. Honestly, the backlog of scanning is ridiculous due to time constraints and the fact that all magazines other than early Honeys are a very Bad Size for my scanner. When will I ever have an A3 scanner? When will I ever have the room?
Anyway, this is an utterly delicious shoot from The Daily Telegraph Magazine, July 1972, featuring some seriously beautiful clothes actually worn underwater in the Bahamas. I must admit that part of me winces at the idea of a silk chiffon Ossie being ruined in the name of a photoshoot. But, then, this is an incredible shoot…and no one would dare do it now, with a vintage piece, so it’s totally unique. I genuinely think that Cherry Twiss is one of the great unsung heroes of British fashion journalism, I’ve always loved the Daily Telegraph Magazine shoots under her direction.
Fashion Editor: Cherry Twiss
Photographer: Flip Schulke
Model: Cathy Shirriff
Also, unfortunately, the Telegraph had a pretty lousy print at times – especially when it came to the small ‘inset’ images. I’ve done my best, but they’re low-res to start with I’m afraid. Still very enjoyable and inspirational though…