Tuesday, December 8, 2015

How to Dress Like a 70s Superstar!

This outfit was 1970s inspired from tip to toe. If you want to be a fabulous, 1970s superstar like me, you need only three key elements, and the ability to play with a few extras and, presto: superstar!

Linda Ronstadt and Dolly Parton
Looking at Linda's outfit here, can you name at least one of the three elements? Sure you can!

You're right! A 70s funky outfit staple is pants tucked into brown, beige, or caramel high boots.

Soul Train
Could this couple be any cooler? I think not!

The pants-in-boots look was cool on men ...

... and women alike.

And it was the absolute best if the pants were corduroy. This is the second key element to dressing like a 70s superstar: corduroy.

Pants: Reitman's; Boots: Ecco; Shirt: boutique; Coat-cape: London Fog; Triangle ring and earrings: Birks; Necklace: a gift; Rafael ring, Sarah Coventry ring, sunglasses, brooch, and purse: vintage
Am I not undeniably cool with my corduroys tucked into my boots? Of course I am!

God invented corduroy for the 1970s.

Everyone knows that.

Every sharp dressed man ...

Jaqueline Smith
... and woman wore corduroy, preferably from head to toe ...

... or at least to boot-top.

Three out of four Swedes did it. Is that not proof enough?

Now that you have mastered the first two elements of dressing like a 70s superstar, you are ready to tackle the third: the artful combination of orange and brown.

Women wore it.

Stevie Wonder
Unutterably cool men wore it.

The cast of Welcome Back Kotter, with a very young John Travolta, second from left
Not so cool men wore it (along with corduroy, as you see on Mr. Kotter here).

Walls and chairs and carpets and all manor of furniture wore it.

Even placemats wore it!

It was just that cool. Mix in a little mustard yellow or tomato red and: tres groovy!

The Jackson Five
Put it all together and you have disco perfection, as demonstrated by the musical young gentleman on the far right.

Now that you know all three essential elements to dressing like a 70s superstar, let's get down to some of the extras, like accessories. Be sure to extend your browns and oranges into your jewelry choices, as I have done here with my rings ...

... and my necklace, an orange garnet pendant. 

Remember that bronze, the metallic cousin of orange, is a great addition to any 70s outfit.

Farrah Fawcett
Same goes for glorious gold. Pile it on, drip with it, roll in it. This is the 1970s, baby. Restraint is so old-fashioned.

Shine for the world, gorgeous!

And let it shine right back at you! 

Cher, Elton John, and Diana Ross.

Shine and glitter and sparkle ...

Even on your eyes, here with a little bronze and gold ...

Just like Cher in a barely there, Bob Mackie masterpiece.

Hoopy earrings are good too, especially in textured gold.

Pam Grier
Though shiny gold is great too.

Linda Ronstadt
Basically, big gold hoops in general are just all round good.

Next step: let your hair down, both literally and metaphorically.

Crystal Gayle
Really really let it down, man!

Outside Studio 54
Now tuck those pants into your boots and head down to Studio 54. Don't worry: if you've followed my instructions, you'll get in ...

Studio 54 by Tod Papageorge

... to the land of the gilded glitterati, where disco reigns supreme.

Studio 54 by Tod Papageorge
You will see things you've never seen before. Heck, you might even do things you've never done before.

Photo by Todd Papageorge
And, if you party as people tend to do there ...

Studio 54 photo by Tod Papageorge
... hard and with the assistance of copious amounts of coke and poppers, among other things ...

If you do all that, you may feel just a tad under the weather the next day ...

... and in need of sunglasses. No problem!

You've got that covered too ...

Cher and Elton John
... like all the superstars ...

Robert Redford
... brightly shining ...

Jo and Blair from Facts of Life. Note Blair's corduroy blazer. Why didn't these two ever just kiss and make out... I mean make up?
... or dimly glowing.

You're already a superstar, but, if you'd like to shine even more brightly, you can add some folk elements to your outfit. Try a little embroidery.

You just can't go wrong.

Pile on the rings.

... like Cher!

Or perhaps your chosen folk element can be a really great cape ...

... or even a cape coat ...

... that does odd, unexpected things ...

... in chocolate brown.

Go forth now, you sly superstar, you! Your path to 1970s decadence lies before you all shining and golden.

You are good to go!

The world will meet you, brown for brown and orange for orange.

And remember, you have not created just one outfit. Oh no, not you. Now that you know the basics, try mixing and matching all the elements and extras for a dramatic, disco-licious groove.

Have fun. Play.

What could possibly ...

... go wrong?

The Brady Bunch
Absolutely nothing, that's what!

After all, you're a superstar!

Just like me.



  1. Oh yeah baby! Love the buckles on your boots, and the robot!!
    You have such a way with history. Thanks for that little walk in amongst orange and brown :-) xo Jazzy Jack

    1. There you are, my friend! I was missing you. I love my boots too. Unfortunately, they don't love my back much; I'm always in more pain when I wear them.

      Cultural history is my thing, well, one of them anyway. It's fun to approach history through the arts: literature, painting, and fashion!

  2. Oh Charlotte. That was incredible. I feel like I just watched my high school and college years pass before my eyes. Yow. All those earth tones. Well done.

    1. That's so fun! I was born in late 1970 so my memories of the 70s aren't as vivid as yours. I'm pleased I did a good enough job to make you feel like you were time traveling. It was pretty fun putting it together.

  3. You look wonderful in your Autumn 1970s inspired outfit, Charlotte! And you're in such a fashionable company here too. Aren't those two dudes cool in their plaid and fur and tall boots? It seems that era drew so much from the medieval fashion - capes, bell sleeves, pants in boots...

    1. That's an interesting point about the Medieval elements. It probably started in the 60s with all those ruffles and velvets and capes. It was a move away from the stuffy, coiffed nature of the 50s, for men and women alike. And, yes, those two dudes are way cool. Understatement was certainly not the name of the game in the 70s.

  4. The orange! Forever seared into my memories of the '70's! Why, oh why, was there so much stinkin' orange? Especially with PINK? hee hee

    1. Oh dear, have I scarred you for life? :) I actually love orange because it so suits my colouring. As I did research for this post, I noticed all that pink with orange. Some of it is in this post and, no, it's not the best combination, is it? Notice that I neither wore it nor promoted it.

    2. If I looked as good as you do in it, I would love it too! Unfortunately it's one of my personal worst colours :)

  5. I love 1970's fashion also. This was so much fun! (Nice cape)

  6. Yes! You are undeniably cool. And thanks for all the fabulous memory-making photos. ABBA, how I loved you. Thanks for linking, xox


  7. I was born in the 70s and love your outfit inspiration from the era.

    Thank you for being a part of TBT Fashion link up and hope to see you soon!