Fashion Items That Were Popular in the 70s

The 70s was a hip and groovy era that had colorful outfits and home décor items. When people think about the 1970s, the first thing that would come to mind for most of them is the fashion trends during that era. While the fashion items that were trendy during that time may be outdated in today’s era, they should never be forgotten since they helped shape the history and culture of that particular time period. Here is a list of fashion items that were popular in the 70s.

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Bell-bottoms, also known as flare pants, is a type of fashion item that is flared from the knees to the feet, which means that the width of the pants widens until it produces a bell-like shape at the lower portion of the pants. Bell-bottoms became a fashion trend when the then-husband-and-wife duo Sonny Bono and Cher wore them frequently in their own show called “The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour.”

Flare pants skyrocketed further into popularity when an iconic actress named Farrah Fawcett would often wear a pair of flare jeans while playing a starring role in the first season of the TV show titled Charlie’s Angels. Bell-bottoms were also worn by popular bands and musical artists in the 1970s. Led Zeppelin is one of the bands that were known for wearing flare pants. If you want to get Led Zeppelin vinyl albums or other 70s-themed gifts, you can read our Nostalgic 70s Gift Ideas.

Oversized Collars

a woman wearing an oversized collar shirt

Button shirts with oversized collars were also quite popular in the 1970s, especially in the nightlife disco scene where almost anyone is wearing colorful shirts with oversized collars. What’s interesting about oversized collars is that they were worn by both men and women during the 70s, so it is one of the most iconic unisex fashion items. Besides button shirts, you would also see people in the 70s wear leather jackets and printed blouses that have oversized collars.

Tie-Dye Shirts

Tie-dye shirts and other tie-dye fashion items were worn by the hippies during the 1970s, as these items have colors and patterns that best represent what they are seeing or experiencing whenever they take LSD or hallucinogenic drugs. These tie-dye shirts would eventually become a fashion trend outside of the hippie culture.

In order to create a tie-dye shirt, the shirt would first have to be crumpled, folded, or twisted in order for the dye to only hit and stick to specific sections of the shirt. The process would be repeated if a person wants to have two or more colors or patterns on the shirt. The folding, twisting, and manipulation of the shirts for dyeing is often called resist dyeing. These dyeing techniques would experience a resurgence in popularity during the late 2010s, as tie-dye shirts were trendy again.

Kaftan Dresses

Kaftan dresses, which were derived from a robe or tunic that originated in Asia, were worn by many women during the 1970s because of their looks and comfort. The kaftan is not just an ordinary robe, as it is adorned with elaborate designs and details that are usually gold in color to make the robe look more elegant. The hippie culture of the 1970s eventually adopted the kaftan robe as one of their fashion pieces that were derived from ethnic styles. Some of the celebrities that made the kaftan dress popular included Elizabeth Taylor, Barbara Hutton, and Babe Paley. These celebrities were mostly socialites that influenced the fashion trends of various decades.

Aviator Glasses

aviator glasses

Aviator glasses are a style of sunglasses that were originally popular among pilots, hence the name. The aviator glasses are believed to have been developed by Bausch & Lomb, a company that makes eye health products and is based in Ontario, Canada. However, the most popular iteration of aviator sunglasses is made by Ray-Ban.

The original aviator glasses were developed to be worn under pilot headgear. After World War II, aviator glasses were produced to be sold to the public. It was in the 1970s when aviator glasses reached their peak in popularity. Aviator glasses were also featured in numerous movies in the 70s, including Jaws, a movie directed by the legendary director Steven Spielberg. If you are currently looking for Jaws movie posters and other 70s home décor items, check out our Nostalgic 70s Home Décor Ideas.

Over-the-Knee Boots

over-the-knee boots

Over-the-knee boots, often referred to by its acronym OTK boots in the 1970s, are a style of long boots that go above the knees. This style of boots has been around since the 15th, although it was originally designed for men as a riding boot. By the 1970s, over-the-knee boots were worn more by women because of their extravagant appearance. The most popular over-the-knee boots in the 1970s were produced by a London store called Biba, which manufactured OTK boots that are made of suede or canvas.

Sun Hat

a woman wearing a sun hat

The sun hat, also known by some as the floppy hat or harvest hat, is a type of soft hat that is designed to protect the face, neck, and shoulders from harsh sunlight. The sun hat would usually have a wide brim that is semi-rigid. The sun hats that were worn by women in the 1970s were typically made of straw or straw-like materials, which would then pair well with kaftan dresses. Because of how useful sun hats are in protecting different parts of the upper body against sunlight, they are still fairly popular today, especially on beaches and tourist spots that are frequently visited during the summer season.

These are some of the most popular fashion items in the 1970s. Even though most of the items we have mentioned above have fallen out of trend, you still have the choice to wear them if you are not the type of person that follows current trends.