Laura McLaws Helms
Often called the “inventor of the mini skirt,” Mary Quant has also, by herself and others, been named the creator of a number of other fashion innovations. Supposedly responsible for fashion tights, make-up, hot pants, PVC clothing and even the duvet, Quant has always been seen to be on the forefront of modern design in the 1960s. The myths surrounding the miniskirts evolution are numerous, and have left the history of 60s fashion in confusion. Seeking to solve the question of the miniskirts’ creation, this paper will look at her work in the context of streetstyle of the era as well as the designs of her competitors for the inventor’s title, John Bates and André Courrèges. Similarly, an in depth analysis will be given to many of the claims made about her career, documenting for the first time the true nature of her contributions. While obviously a talented designer who clearly understood how to tap into the mood of the moment, how many innovations was she truly responsible for? Did she create new styles or merely popularize them?
Undressing the Fashionable Myth SymposiumSaturday May 7th,Robert Lagary Board Room, Marvin Feldman Center 9th Floor, Seventh Ave at 27th street.