Body Paint

Painting the face and body became another psychedelic trip of the 60s. Mod model Twiggy added a famous flower eye to her look, and suddenly everyone wanted to use the body as a canvas. This was no slapdash finger-painting, however - Twiggy's flower eye was a careful artistic work, with painted petals and false eyelashes framing her(...)

Boob Tube

It was hard not to stare at the girls prancing around in their spray-can fit designer jeans or satin pants, and that amazing piece of fabric pulled across their midsection, the Boob Tube. If you were a guy, you were in heaven. During the sexual revolution, if going without a bra wasn't bad enough, try(...)

Braces (Suspenders)

Wide - at *least* two inches - braces (or "suspenders" in the USA), generally with rainbows or anything colourful. Clipped-on with cheap metal clips. (Think Mork and Mindy or Annie Hall). When Woody Allen's 1977 blockbuster Annie Hall featured a masculinely dressed Diane Keaton, the 'Annie Hall look' became an overnight trend. Ladies everywhere slipped into men's clothes, adopting the(...)

Brothel Creepers

These thick crepe soled shoes first walked onto the scene when British Teddy Boys adopted the "brothel creeper" shoe style as a part of the teenage rebel uniform. The lightweight design of the stacked sole differed from the flat leather-soled shoe commonly worn, allowing the wearer to 'creep' the floors at night without making the squeaks(...)


Created in 1929 and mass marketed as the first man's hair product, Brylcreem was a greasy hair cream that was run through the hair, slicking each hair into perfect position. Teenage rebels who slicked their hair into pompadour ducktail hairdos were dubbed 'Greasers' after the shiny style, and for their use of copious amounts of(...)

Bullet Bra


Buster Brown Shoes

Buster Brown was a mischievous youngster from the comic strip of the same name - the creation of Richard Fenton Outcault. The little blonde boy with the Dutch bang hair, the wide sailor cap and the big floppy bow collar became mascot to kids feet when he lent his image to the most famous children's(...)

Capri Pants

By the 1950s, Italy had already influenced the short pin curl cut, the stand-up collar on crisp cotton shirts, and now the slim calf-length pants known as capris made their way west to the UK and US. Italy's island of Capri was a popular tourist spot during the 50s, and the traditional mid-calf style pants(...)

Car Coats

The baby boom prosperity provided a streamlined, tail-finned car in every garage, and plenty of spending money to drive into town with. Department stores moved from the urban centre to a suburban location, where parking lots offered convenience and speed. Boulevards and sidewalks were widened, and huge picture windows teased passers-by with product displays of(...)

Carnaby Street

Carnaby Street

By 1965, London had become the fashion capital of the world as far as young people were concerned. At it's centre were three streets - The Kings Road in Chelsea (put on the map by Mary Quant), Kensington Church Street (where designer Barbara Hulanicki ran a boutique called Biba), and Carnaby Street, which not so long(...)

Charm Bracelets

Inexpensive costume jewellery made it possible for all to enjoy the cosmetic display of adornment, and girls loved the jangly, collector-friendly charm bracelet. The concept behind a charm bracelet was to collect and add little "charms" - miniature plastic or metal representations of all the things you treasured in life.   Other forms of bracelets(...)

Chelsea Boots

First appearing in the 1960s, Chelsea boots featured a slim, ankle-high top with a wedge block heel. The boot returned heels to the fashion of men’s boots, which were last seen in the 19th century. The boot was a simple pull-on style, with a slightly pointed toe and a central seam that ran up the(...)


The United States Army utilised the beige cotton twill material for its uniforms, which were made in China. The shipping boxes were stamped "China" but were misread as "Chino" which was interpreted as the name of the super-soft cloth. The name stuck. Chinos moved from workman's closet to rebel ready-to-wear when the Beats paired the(...)

Circle Skirts

No 1950s girl's afternoon would have been complete without hours of sitting on the floor, her skirt pooling around her in a big circle, dreamily listening to Bobby Darin records. This activity was as important as hanging upside down on a chair while talking on the phone, or custom crafting a poodle skirt for the(...)


Originally known as the "poor man's velvet" when invented in the 18th century, Corduroy enjoyed enormous popularity in 1970s men's clothes and was made into suits, blazers, leisure suits, shirts, and jeans ("cords"). Popular colours were tan, brown, burgundy, and bottle-green. The fabric also appeared made into women's skirts, but on the whole it was(...)

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