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Vintage Maxi Dresses

It is just over 100 years since hems started to scandalously stray above the ankle bone.  The full length dress (or close to it) was once the fashion uniform for western women.  Now, designer maxi dresses are a choice we make from our wardrobes of plenty, and a great one at that. Though they remained de rigour for evening wear and did appear in the decades of the first half of the century for day wear too, it seemed to take the progression up the leg to the mini dress or skirt in the 1960’s which finally brought about a subversive effect, bringing skirts back to earth in the bohemian age with maxi length dresses.

The 1960’s was a decade where many styles and aesthetics rubbed shoulders and while some aspired to geometric shapes and bold colours of the ‘London look’ others harked back to earlier eras to source their clothing and the concept of ‘Vintage’ fashion was born.  Contemporary designers such as Thea Porter and Gina Fratini took inspiration from antique Edwardian sources to create romantic dresses and kaftans.  Other designers such as Emilio Pucci and Ossie Clark with his wife Celia Birtwell were experimenting with psychedelic print and colour and nowhere could these have more impact than the full skirt of a maxi dress.

However, if there is a decade of the 20th century to which the maxi skirt belongs, it is surely the 1970’s.  Carrying forward the riotous colour of the late 1960’s, designers such as Bill Gibb, Louis Féraud, Zandra Rhodes, Yuki London and Yves Saint Laurent (often with ensemble pieces) took up the mantel and played with shape and form.  A long line was in with trouser suits and dinner suits becoming a very popular choice for many women.  The elegance of this form matched a similar aesthetic shift in maxi dresses.  With his silky, plunging and fluid creations, American designer Halston brought the full length dress to a wider, sleeker, more urban audience with dresses designed to wear from day to night.  In his simple and minimalist designs, women could feel like goddesses and certainly his greatest fans such as Pat Cleveland and Bianca Jagger looked like minor deities in them.  Today vintage maxi dresses or, what some might call retro maxi dresses, prove to be great style hits not just for the beach.  A perfect choice for summer, worn with a great platform heel, a neat pair of trainers, a biker jacket and a belt, these dresses can take on a new life.

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Lanvin 1972 Documented Halterneck Maxi Dress Size M

An amazing Lanvin maxi dress from 1972 - what a perfect summer dress!
£1,060.00

Yves Saint Laurent S/S 1980 Vintage Silk Taffeta Peasant Blouse & Maxi Skirt XS

A magnificent Yves Saint Laurent silk taffeta set from Spring/Summer 1980 comprising a peasant blouse and a widely flared maxi skirt.
£600.00

Clobber by Jeff Banks 1970s Diamond Print Vintage Dress

Clobber by Jeff Banks Vintage Diamond Print Knit Dress with Ruffle Cuffs, 1970s
£150.00

Moschino 1990s Vintage "Sewing Pattern" Maxi Dress Size S-M

A fabulous, rare Moschino maxi dress from the 1990s made from a lightweight rayon featuring a striking sewing pattern print against a black background.
£265.00

Moschino 1990s 'Fashion is No More' Vintage Maxi Dress

Moschino "Fashion is No More" Slinky Black Jersey Maxi Dress, 1990s
£250.00

Versus Sleeveless Abstract Print Grey Vintage Slip Dress

Versus sleeveless maxi slip dress with fine straps and a print of fine waving lines of a grey ground
£165.60

Iceberg Silk Matador Printed Asymmetric black vintage Dress

Iceberg Black Silk Matador Printed Asymmetric Dress
£165.60

Loris Azzaro 1970s Rare Cape Top and Skirt Yellow Vintage Dress Set

Vintage 1970s Loris Azzaro cape top and skirt dress set in yellow with a fringe detailing.
£655.50

Valentino Silk Ruffle Aqua Green vintage Evening Dress

Valentino Aqua Green Silk Ruffles Evening Maxi Dress with beading
£358.80

Neiman Marcus 1970s Rainbow Stripe Maxi Dress

Neiman Marcus Mexican Style Kaftan Mexican Rainbow Stripe Maxi Dress, 1970s
£350.00

Gianni Versace 1990s Asymmetrical Evening Gown

A 1990s Gianni Versace Black Double Layered Rayon Jersey Knit Dress
£600.00

Yuki 1970s Grey Kimono Sleeve Evening Gown

Yuki Draped Jersey Monastic Grey & White Kimono Sleeve Evening Gown, 1970s
£600.00

Victor Costa 1970s Red Brocade Evening Dress

Victor Costa Romantica Red, Purple & Green Metallic Brocade Evening Dress, 1970s
£180.00

Vintage 1970s Black & Gold Embroidered Caftan Dress

Vintage 1970s Black & Gold Lamé Embroidered Caftan Maxi Dress
£200.00

Bruce Oldfield Couture 1990s Silk & Organza Black Gown

Bruce Oldfield Couture trompe l'oeil embroidered silk & organza strapless gown
£320.00

Kenzo Draped Silk Chiffon Floral Maxi Dress

A Kenzo Black & White Draped Floral Polka Dot Silk Chiffon Maxi Dress
£250.00

Curiel Couture 1970s Black & Grey Printed Velvet Evening Gown

A Curiel Couture vintage black & grey printed velvet & chiffon evening gown, 1970s
£400.00

Gina Fratini 1980s Black Velvet Evening

A 1980s Gina Fratini Black Velvet & Pleated Fuchsia Evening Dress
£160.00

Zandra Rhodes 1970s Purple Silk Chiffon Vintage Dress

Zandra Rhodes Purple Floral Silk Chiffon Dress with Floor Length Train, c. 1970s-80s
£750.00

Chloe 1980s Ivory Silk Maxi Dress with Jacket

Vintage 80's Chloé sleeveless maxi button front maxi dress with jacket in ivory silk
£620.00

Missoni Grey Cashmere and Silver Lurex Gown

Missoni grey cashmere and lurex knitted long dress from the 2000's
£900.00

Gianfranco Ferre 1980s Long Red Tunic Dress

Gianfranco Ferré 1980s tunic dress with long embroidered buttoned sleeves
£100.00

Gianni Versace Couture 1990s Chiffon Black Vintage Evening Dress

Gianni Versace sleeveless dress with a shaped bodice and handkerchief hem and narrow shoulder straps
£1,299.30

Emilio Pucci circa 1980 Swarovski Crystals Embellished Evening Dress

A spectacular Emilio Pucci couture evening dress, made from a printed silk organza and most opulently embroidered with sparkling Swarovski crystals and sequins.
£5,100.00

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