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Vintage Mini Dresses

Mini dresses are, alongside mini skirts, a fashion piece of controversy. Pioneered by British Designer Mary Quant andAndré Courrèges in France (the former who described the short hemline as “a way of rebelling”), mini dresses became a fashion must-have in 1964. Closely associated with the Chelsea pack of London’s Kings Road, the mini dress was named after Quant’s favourite car, the Mini, and though she has often been credited for inventing the decade-defining piece, André Courrèges was experimenting with shorter hemlines in Paris at the same time and began to show space-age dresses with skirts ending well above the knees. Twiggy is, many would say, the unrivalled mini dress muse, though above-the-knee dresses and skirts were endorsed by flapper girls already in the 1920s – most memorably by Josephine Baker and her mini skirt made of bananas. Other historical mini dress events to note are the launch of Yves Saint Laurent’s Mondrian dress in 1965; and the (not-so-virgin-like) white tulle mini dress worn by Madonna at the 1984 MTV Video Music Awards.

Today, mini dresses have been cemented as party wear – particularly for clubbing and for the festive period, though they are frequently revisited by contemporary designers as daywear.

OfV says: Often made with stretchy materials or in A-line shapes, mini dresses are surprisingly flattering and versatile. At Open for Vintage we firmly believe that there is a mini style for all, and our edit of vintage mini dresses is there to prove it. The section spans rare vintage statement pieces like 1960s psychedelic printed mini dresses; contemporary pre-owned pop colour party dresses; and a vast array of classic LBD’s – all from some of the most coveted dress designers in history including Prada, Dior and Versace. Nod to the mod girls of Kings Road with a 1960s retro dress and a hard-cover plastic vintage box bag; lift a pre-owned designer party dress with an embellished clutch bag and a pair of peep toe Louboutin stilettos; or do the LBD the subtle way with barely-there ballerinas and a figure-flattering black blazer. Trending kitten heels and a rare designer patent tote bag will give your little black dress up-to-date fashion appeal.


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Renato Balestra 1960s Metallic Silver Shift Dress

A vintage 1960s silver lurex shift dress by Renato Balestra

Chanel White Wool Dress and Fringe Dress

Chanel short sleeved dress in ivory textured woven wool with a long fringed front panel

Louis Vuitton Cream Knit Dress

Louis Vuitton knit dress with short sleeves and V neck

Gianfranco Ferre 1970s Blue Tunic Dress

Gianfranco Ferré 1970s blue unic dress with a double row of gold tone buttons

Michael Hoban North Beach 1980s Leather Bright Red Lace Up Mini Dress

Michael Hoban strapless mini dress in bright red leather with a laced up front

Michael Hoban North Beach 1980s Leather Black Pig Skin Dress & Jacket Set

Black leather mini dress and jacket set with a fitted strapless mini dress and a zip front jacket

Blumarine Fantasy Floral Print Blue and White Mini Dress

Blumarine mini dress in a large blue and white floral print with a wide shoulder neckline

Dolce & Gabbana Red Black Floral Cotton & Silk Embroidered Dress

Dolce & Gabbana dress in red and black floral embroidered silk.

Courreges 1970s Vichy Cotton Light Blue Vintage Dress

1970s Gorgeous Courrèges cotton vichy blue & white vichy dress featuring back white snaps opening, center front Courrèges logo, front pockets.

1990s Helmut Lang Multicolored Silk Dress

1990s Helmut Lang printed silk dress mixed with contrasted black jersey details.

Vintage 1980s Hawaiian Print Blue Shirt Dress

1980's short shirt style dress with white flowers in a dark blue ground

Vintage 1980s Pink & Olive Green Dress and Coat Set

1980s sleeveless dress with spectacular green and gold shot silk pleated bodice and a high collar coat in a pink Paisley / Ikat fabric line with green and pink striped fabric

Versace Pink Cotton Blend Runway Mini Dress

Versace mini dress in pink cotton with a sleeveless design. Runway piece.

Versace Multicolor Print Cotton & Silk Sheath Dress

Versace sleeveless sheath dress in multicoloured cotton and silk with a print.

Versace Jeans Couture White Stretch Dress

Versace Jeans Couture sleeveless stretch dress in white.

Versace AW07 Grey Bustier Dress

Versace bustier dress in grey from the AW07 collection.

Geoffrey Beene 1960s Orange Babydoll Mini Dress

A rare and uber-cute Geoffrey Beene mini dress from the 1960s featuring a sleeveless fitted bodice with a decorative button panel and a beautifully constructed mini skirt that falls in extra wide pleats.

Angelo Tarlazzi 1980s Black Silk Cocktail Dress

An amazing Angelo Tarlazzi cocktail dress made from beautifully draped black silk taffeta, with a row of bows on one side.

Louis Feraud 1960s Graphic Printed Black Dress

A gorgeous Louis Féraud dress from the late 1960s with a stunning four-leaf clover graphic print and the original belt.

Nina Ricci 1970s Jacquard Pink Silk Dress

A very charming little Nina Ricci dress made from a fine jacquard silk in the most luscious pink.

Emanuel Ungaro 1980s Printed Silk White Cocktail Dress

A gorgeous Ungaro cocktail dress from the 1980s, a very representative piece of his work. It is made of a fine white silk with a stunning floral print in pink, blue and green.

Elizabeth Arden 1980s Sweetheart Gold Jacquard Puff Sleeve Dress

Elizabeth Arden mini dress with puff sleeves and skirt in gold herringbone fabric and a textured sweetheart neckline bodice

Vintage 1980s Diamond Sequin Black Velvet Mini Dress

1980s strapless mini dress in black velvet and covered all over with a pattern of diamonds in gold tone sequins

Victor Costa 1960sLace Corseted Cocktail Mini Dress

Strapless bustier cocktail dress in black lace over a cream lining and a black fox fur trim hem

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