(May 1 - June 30, 2010)
2nd floor of the Dacotah Prairie Museum was alive with the fad, fun, colorful fashions of the 1970’s. For the months of May and June, the Museum hosted hippies, flower children and those glitzy disco guys and girls of the “polyester decade”!
Coming on the heels of the swinging ‘60s, the 1970’s were dubbed by writer Tom Wolfe, “The ME Decade.” This attitude carried over into the fashion world. Clothing became a way of expressing oneself, thus the 1970’s were associated with a variety of “LOOKS”. Fashion Magazines of the time declared, “Anything goes!”
Some looks went so far as to be classified as “anti-fashion.” Experimentation was the rule and styles changed quickly. Synthetic fabrics were big for the first time and clothes became “drip-dry” and were easy to care for. Demand for everything polyester grew steadily, including the quintessential “70s leisure suit.
Polyester could be made to imitate other fabrics, like cotton, satin, fur, etc. which required more care. It was first commercially produced in the United States in 1953, and thanks to advances in fabric dye, could be made in a wide variety of colors and patterns. To illustrate its popularity, in the 1960s there were 4 companies making polyester, by 1980 there were 23 companies producing it. The 1970s could truly be called the Polyester Decade!
Some of the most popular ‘70s styles include:
- Jeans with Bellbottoms (for both men and women)
- Glitzy Disco Clothes
- Leisure Suits
- Hippie Looks
- Platform Shoes
- Halter Neck Tops
- Tube Tops
- Pantsuits for Women
- Skirts of all lengths – Mini, Midi & Maxi
- Polyester Print Shirts
- Earth Shoes
- Everything Designer!
To view past exhibits, click here.