Wednesday, December 31, 2008
The Pattie Chronicles: The Style
Throughout most of the sixties, Pattie Boyd was a fashion icon. Her sense of style evolved throughout the decade from her modest skirt suits of the early ‘60s, to her transition from Mod Goddess (or Moddess, if you will) to a happy hippie in the mid-‘60s, ending the decade with a mature, more subdued sense of style that she would carry for the rest of her life. She became muse to legendary designer Ossie Clark and partied with Mary Quant. Not too many other models (or people at all) can lay claim to this. Pattie wore miniskirts (the ‘60s definition of mini – about three inches above the knee) and said that the color of choice for a cocktail dress would be white or pink – knocking the theory of the Little Black Dress’s essentialness for a loop. With evening dresses, Pattie liked to pair her designer gowns with a second-hand black velvet jacket, a high-low combination that would become so popular in the next few years.
Pattie was proud that she never purchased much expensive clothing, instead buying a lot of vintage (her favorite being Edwardian). Though not all of us are international supermodels and are gifted tons of designer clothing, so when it comes to dressing like Pattie, us common people may have to lay out a pretty penny or two. But take the advice from Pattie – the best place to start your wardrobe is in a vintage store. Not only is it usually less outrageously priced than the clothing found in department stores, but there is something quite appealing to buying vintage clothing and pondering what fabulous event from decades past your item was worn to. Perhaps your silver floor-length gown danced with Frank Sinatra in Vegas or your newly acquired Halston Grecian gown partied at Studio 54 with Bianca Jagger and Andy Warhol. At vintage stores, you can find not only Victorian pieces like Pattie loved, but clothing from the 1960s is quite commonplace in most good vintage stores. And if the heavens are on your side, you might even find an Ossie Clark original that Ms. Boyd wore of her own!
Emulating Pattie Boyd’s wardrobe is so much fun because how you go about it depends on your personality. Pattie went through five major style periods during the sixties, and, depending on which one you want to follow, you can interject much of your own personality into it. But whether you decide to follow one of Pattie’s 60s fashion periods or alternate between the five, you will always be well-dressed. And whatever you decide, you won’t be alone in your decision. Sixties supermodel Twiggy confessed that she modeled herself after Ms. Boyd’s early sweet Mod-ish taste in clothing and makeup when the Twig was first establishing a career for herself – and just look at how well that turned out!