The 1960s were by far one of the most iconic and memorable decades in American history. From hippies to miniskirts and go-go boots, many agree that the 60s witnessed everything from revolutionary movements to audacious fashion trends. Here are our favorite ten trends that marked this decade.
Everyone, young and old, had an afro or at least aspired to grow one. The "fro" was by far the hairdo of choice back then for both men and women. The bigger the afro, the better!
The sixties witnessed the birth of the Barbie sensation. Sales of Barbie merchandise reached a whopping $100,000,000 by 1965. Ruth Handler, the creator of Barbie dolls, was inspired to make a 3-dimensional doll after watching her daughter play with her paper dolls. She named them after her daughter Barbara.
Derived from Navy uniforms, bell-bottoms were the fashion statement for hippies, and a trademark of the sixties era. Worn by Elvis Presley as well as Sonny and Cher, these wide-legged pants became very popular with the younger generations.
The British rock group, the Beatles, was a massive hit with kids and teens. Crazed fans would faint at their concerts. Beatlemania was so extreme that some rabid fans would even pass out just from watching them perform on TV!
The go-go boots were created by the leading French fashion designer Andre Courreges, in 1965. They were an instant hit, worn by women at nightclubs all the way from New York to Los Angeles.
Invented in the mid-60s, lava lamps were definitely a decorative novelty in this already colorful era (and perhaps still are, somewhere in the world). People were fascinated with how this lamp made of an illuminated glass cylinder filled with a colorful, wax-like substance, glowed like lava when heated. Lava lamps surely lit up the 60s!
Following the conservative 50s, miniskirts were part of the Women's Liberation Movement of the 1960s. These short dresses reached their peak of popularity in 1967 when they became a sign of rebellion more than just a sassy fashion statement. "Showing it all" was the new trend and the past demure days went flying out of the door.
You would expect the maker of the "smiley face" to have made a six-figure profit for his drawing. Ironically, however, Harvey Ross Ball was only paid $45 for drawing it in 1963, and never trademarked it either. Working for an advertising agency in Massachusetts at the time, Ball was hired by a client of the agency to come up with something that would comfort employees. Amazingly enough, the smiley face ended up soothing the entire world!
Tie Dye T-Shirts
The ancient art of tie dying was at its prime in the 60s, transforming dull white t-shirts to vibrantly colored and boldly designed shirts. With all the fads of the sixties, it is no wonder that hippies wanted to make the trends shine through their clothing. Tie dying still lives to this day.
Worn by many high-profile celebrities like Johnny Carson, Senator Robert Kennedy, Sammy Davis Jr., Steve McQueen and Paul Newman, the turtleneck was at its climax. 1967 was named as the year of the turtle in reference to the turtleneck sweater.
For those who were lucky enough to witness them, the sixties will always stay in our hearts. Hopefully, we might see the return of some of these trends, someday. And if we are lucky enough, others will remain in the sixties, to be remembered and sometimes even laughed about.