60s Fashion Trends: A Style Revolution

60s Fashion Couple Yellow
Here’s your guide to 1960s fashion. Photo: Shutterstock.com

When it came to 1960s fashion, it was a decade that saw the rise of style, music, and culture. It was an era of change and revolution that changed the world forever. The 60s fashion scene was full of vibrant colors, whimsical designs, and bold styles.

The 1960s were a time of rebellion and experimentation for many people—especially women who were tired of being told what to wear. The new freedom gave rise to a whole new era of style that would influence fashion for decades to come. From short 1960s hairstyles to higher hemlines, it was all about rebellious looks.

Hepburn Inspired Outfit Bright Colors
Bold colors were a stand-out of 60s fashion. Photo: Shutterstock.com

60s Fashion Overview

The decade began with a focus on classic shapes: A-line skirts and pencil skirts were popular for their flattering lines, while high necklines and full sleeves were seen as very flattering for women’s figures. However, by the end of the decade, these trends had waned somewhat and were replaced by more free-flowing shapes like bell bottoms and miniskirts for 1960s outfits.

These shifts in silhouette were accompanied by changes in materials—synthetic fabrics like polyester which had previously been seen only in utilitarian clothing like work uniforms were favored by young designers on everything from dresses with bold prints to outerwear.

Designer Mary Quant Mini Skirt Stamp
Mary Quant is credited with being one of the first designers to make the mini skirt. Photo: neftali / Shutterstock.com

1960s Fashion Designers

If you’re interested in the fashion of the 1960s, it’s important to know who was designing at that time. The designers of this era created an exciting mix of old and new ideas that would help shape the future of fashion.

Famous names from this period include Paco Rabanne, Mary Quant, Emilio Pucci, Pierre Cardin, and Yves Saint Laurent. Still, some lesser-known designers should be noted for their contributions to the decade’s style.

60s fashion became synonymous with innovation and a change in style toward a relatively modern look. For example, women wearing pants has become more acceptable than before. Likewise, the overall style of 1960’s fashion focused on casual wear with the popularity of jeans and simple silhouettes. The space age gave rise to sci-fi-inspired styles like Paco Rabanne’s metallic chainmail dresses.

Mini Skirts 1960s Style
The mini skirt was a major trend during the 1960s. Photo: Shutterstock.com

Mini Skirts

Mini skirts became popular in the mid to late 1960s. There is much speculation as to when the style was invented, with some sources stating that it was as early as 1960. During the early years of their existence, mini skirts were worn by celebrities like Twiggy and Brigitte Bardot.

The rise of these garments coincided with a period of sexual liberation for women. They then felt less pressure to adhere to conservative dress codes.

As their popularity grew, so did their length; designers such as Mary Quant and André Courrèges popularized even shorter versions of the mini during this time period. British designer Mary Quant also became well-known for creating hot pants.

The 60s fashion trend was eventually adopted by mainstream fashion industry houses like Christian Dior and Yves Saint Laurent before becoming a staple part of modern wardrobes around the world—and it remains there today!

Hippie Fashion Trends

Hippies were a counterculture movement that emerged during the 1960s for men and women. The hippie subculture was associated with peace, love, and drugs. Male hippies were known for their long hair and beards (they were also referred to as “freaks”), which they often wore in an unkempt manner; then there were also those who kept their hair short but grew out their sideburns—the “burnouts.”

Hippies also commonly wore colorful clothing such as tie-dye and brightly colored patchwork designs that reigned supreme. They favored loose-fitting garments made from natural fabrics like linen or cotton over stiffer synthetics like polyester—and they were not afraid to mix patterns together!

Hippie fashion was typically casual and informal yet still stylishly fashionable; it could range from bohemian style to more rock-influenced, depending on the hippie’s own personal style preferences.

Twiggy 1960s Model
Twiggy was one of the top models in the fashion world during the 1960s. Photo Credit: Allstar Picture Library Limited. / Alamy Stock Photo

Famous 60s Models

Some of the famous models of the 1960s were Veruschka, Twiggy, and Jean Shrimpton. These models were the celebrities of their day, as well as some of the first supermodels. Jean Shrimpton became well-known for her work with photographer David Bailey, appearing on magazine covers like Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.  She also modeled the mini skirt and helped it become a major trend.

Known as the successor to Jean, British model Twiggy became associated with 1960s fashion thanks to her short hairstyle, waif figure, and large, expressive eyes. As one of the most famous short models, Twiggy stands at 5’6″.

Veruschka is a German model who rose to fame in the 1960s and has some of the fashion photography world’s most famous images. She has the distinction of appearing on Vogue covers for the US, Italy, France, and UK editions throughout the decade. 

Mod Fashion Colorblock Dress
A color block dress evokes the modern designs of the decade. Photo: Shutterstock.com

Mod Fashion

Mod fashion was a British movement that emerged in the early 1960s. It was influenced by Italian and French styles and featured a love of simplified shapes like geometric dresses, bold colors, and youthful exuberance. Mod is short for modernist. Mod fashion is most closely associated with London’s Carnaby Street during the swinging sixties.

Mod men’s fashion was known for slim-fitting suits or cardigans paired with skinny ties or scarves around their necks (called drape scarves). The men wore narrow-legged trousers that tapered down to shoes.

The women’s style mimicked this look but often included short skirts instead of pants. In general, mod clothes were designed to make you look young and fresh while seeming like you didn’t care about your appearance—it was all about attitude for the swinging London scene!

Audrey Hepburn Breakfast Tiffanys Print
Audrey Hepburn is one of the 60s top fashion icons. Photo: Lucian Milasan / Shutterstock.com

60s Fashion Icons

Many of today’s biggest fashion icons came from this era, including Twiggy, Audrey Hepburn, Diana Ross, and Jackie Kennedy. The freedom to express yourself through your clothes was at an all-time high during this time period, and it showed with 1960s fashion.

Jackie Kennedy is one of the most iconic women in history. When she became First Lady, Jackie Kennedy changed American style forever by bringing French fashion back into popularity. Her classic charm and elegance inspired many women in her day—and still is today! Jacqueline Kennedy was known for wearing skirt suits, glamorous evening wear, and pastel colors.

Audrey Hepburn’s signature style was very simple but also very elegant—and that’s precisely what drew people to her in droves! She was known for wearing all kinds of classic silhouettes with lots of black and white hues, as well as for mixing prints in flattering ways. She worked closely with the French fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy.

Shift Dress Colorblock 1960s
Shift dresses were a leading trend of 60s fashion. Photo: Lucian Milasan / Shutterstock.com

Signature Style – Shift Dresses

The shift dress has been around since the 1920s, but it really came into its own as part of 1960s fashion. The shapeless shift dress is a simple dress that typically hangs about knee-length, with no waistline, and typically has no sleeves. It’s made from cotton or polyester fabric (though sometimes silk or satin), and it looks the same on everyone because it has no waistline.

So why did this simple dress become so popular during this time period in 60s fashion? Well, first off: it was easy to make. Additionally, shift dresses are easy to accessorize with boots, jewelry, hats, chain belts, and more bold accessories. These mini dresses could do a lot!

1960s Fashion Floral Print Dress
The bold prints of the 1960s can be seen in modern designs. Photo: Shutterstock.com

1960s Fashion Style Inspiration Today

Fashion trends are cyclical. What was popular in the 1960s can still be seen today. For example, 1960s color blocking which was inspired by pop art has become a timeless trend. In addition, the chainmail dress has made a comeback.

Women’s fashion has changed a lot in the last 60 years, and you can still see plenty of trends today that were popular during this time period—like miniskirts and go-go boots!

Conclusion

The 1960s is a timeless fashion era that many designers and fashionistas have emulated over the years. It’s easy to see why this period in history has such a lasting appeal: it was an incredibly unique time with some of the most iconic looks in history, from mini skirts to mod dresses and hippie blouses. If you want to take inspiration from this era, then look for 60s fashion trends that can easily be worn in modern times.

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