70s inspiration on the runway from Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Missoni, Naomi Campbell at the Emilio Pucci and Chanel Spring 2015, Getty Images.

70s inspiration on the runway from Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Missoni, Naomi Campbell at the Emilio Pucci show and Chanel Spring 2015, Getty Images.

That 70s show

Whether you want to dance in a halterneck dress or land that job in a flared suit, take your cue from the freewheeling 1970s – the decade’s fashion is a prime inspiration this season.
March 12, 2015

The perfect embodiment of the season? A surprise appearance by Naomi Campbell at the Emilio Pucci show. Strutting out on the catwalk, the supermodel was in a billowing halterneck maxi dress, and its multicolored tie-dye fabric, along with a turned-up Fleetwood Mac soundtrack and Campbell’s leisurely yet confident pout, said it all: 1970s swag is officially back. 

Emilio Pucci wasn’t the only label taking a trip down memory lane. Etro channeled the hippie movement with a collection of billowing dresses, ponchos and beaded jewelry. So did Missoni, where the colors of those signature knits were washed out and jumbled together in a retro mix-and-match that included turbans and flowing skirts. At Gucci, Frida Giannini was thinking less “wild child” and more 1970s chic with her line-up of smart tailored suede dresses and halterneck shifts. 

The 1970s was a decade that saw dress codes dispelled and clothing for day-to-day life dominating the trends. Owing to the current obsession with the decade, denim is once again being elevated to high-fashion status, from indigo wash jeans at Louis Vuitton and Chloé to jumpsuits at Sonia Rykiel and Stella McCartney. Wide 1970s flares are also back in mode. 

But the 1970s were also a time of political awareness and freedom-loving youth rebelling against the conformity of traditional society to the sounds of rock guitar and disco beats. 

This influence became apparent as the retro redux traveled beyond Milan to Paris. At Chanel, the 1970s came in the form of psychedelic prints (hand-painted by Karl Lagerfeld himself) and a staged protest on the runway. Saint Laurent’s 1970s siren was Marianne Faithfull crossed with Iggy Pop – the platforms and turbans would have been perfect at the hedonistic New York club Studio 54. 

It seems the collective consciousness of fashion designers (and their fans) are full of dreams of free love, far-out experiences and a better world for all. Sounds like a trend that will be difficult to resist!