70s Fashion: Hippie Hair and Hot Pants
As an era that spawned its own television show in the U.S., the era of 70s fashion is one to be reckoned with. So much so that it keeps popping up every few years in 70s revival fashions, as it has in 2015 and previous years. Before you raid your mom’s keepsake trunk or hunt down your favorite Etsy seller, though, take a look at some of the iconic looks of the decade so you can decide which of the 70s fashions would look best on you.
Hot pants aren’t for everyone. If you want to rock this 70s fashion look, you’d better have the gams to go with them. Shorter than a miniskirt, these ultra-short shorts were worn with everything from knee-high boots to kitten heels, with tights during the winter and with nothing but leg during the long, hot summers.
Bell bottom pants continued their dominance in both jeans and in wildly-patterned designs in screaming bright colors. Close-cropped tops, T-shirts, or flowy, peasant-y blouses in cotton and lace with sleeves that flared at the wrist were worn on top.
In the fall, winter, and early spring, capes and maxi-coats, regular wool coats that went right to the ankle or below were all the rage, as were tops from military surplus in aged khaki, preferably with some authentic frayed patches intact.
Dresses, in their 70s fashion incarnation, were tiny with hemlines mid-thigh, and were made from patterned fabrics in wild, psychedelic flowers, Native American, Mexican, and Indian designs, or were long and flowy, reminiscent of American prairie wear in naturally-dyed cottons or peasant prints, all with plenty of lace.
Skirts followed suit with the dresses and were either flowing maxis, reminiscent of women’s wear a century earlier, or were micro-minis that rivaled hot pants in their length. Accessories emphasized the return-to-nature movement. Handcrafted jewelry crafted from leather, feathers, wood, shells and natural stones were what every well-dressed hippie—and woman—wore during that era. Headbands, ponytail holders made leather and wood, and scarves crafted from ethnic fabric were all popular, as were Earth shoes, clogs, platform shoes, and Birkenstocks.
Later in the era, glitter rock made an impact on the fashion world of the 70s. Denim suddenly sported glittery trim, glitzy tuxedo tops, and Elton John-like spectacles with huge, bug-eyed frames. In a foretaste of the over-the-top blingy ‘80s, late 70s sweaters often included some metallic yarn and sparkling trim. Halter tops and jumpsuits became popular, the latter even making an appearance in men’s fashion.
Women’s hairstyles at the beginning of the decade were usually long, wispy, and flat-iron straight or Afros, for those lucky enough to have the hair type of hair that enabled them to wear such styles. Women with thick, wavy hair not curly enough for an Afro would have to wait until the next decade for their hair to become all the rage. Toward the end of the 1970s, though, long hair cut in a shaggy, feathered look became popular in 70s fashion, thanks to pinup icon Farrah Fawcett, star of the TV show “Charlie’s Angels.”