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Hippies were inspired by the political goings-on of the era, and their clothing was free flowing and colourful to represent an anti-war, peaceful and loving state of mind.On the flip side, there was the disco movement, which was all about tight fitting, shiny and sparkly clothing.Historically, black women have chosen race over gender concerns, a choice that was especially poignant during Reconstruction when African American female leaders, such as Frances Ellen Watkins Harper, supported the Fifteenth Amendment giving black men the right to vote over the objections of white women suffragists.Black women have a long feminist tradition dating back to 19th-century activists such as Maria W.(Donna Summer in a variety of amazing disco outfits, via What the Frock?) Sportswear grew drastically in popularity during this time for both men and women.

As in every decade, the fashions of the 1970s were influenced by the social and political issues of the era.During the early 70s, fashion reflected the anti-war, pro-peace mentality that had begun toward the end of the 60s, and flourished as the hippie look became more mainstream.(photo via LA Times) The 1970s saw a variety of fashion styles, but the most easily recognizable were the hippie style and the disco/glam music-inspired fashions.Blended fabrics became more common during this time, often using different percentages of cotton and polyester blended together.And of course, polyester fabric in general was widely used, and the use of lycra became commonplace (especially in the disco-inspired fashions of the day.) Tie dying fabric and clothing was another 70s phenomenon.

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