About Joyatri

Avid thrifter and vintage clothes wearer. Love 1960s and early 1970s styles. Partial to Art Nouveau, Pre-Raphaelite, Victorian, Renaissance and Medieval art. Former art historian. Current packrat. On a continual quest for good-looking, comfortable vegan shoes. Bhangra dancer since 2002. Fascinated by all things Indian. Vegan and animal advocate. 

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Words I like:

"She was dressed, as usual, in an odd assortment of clothes, most of which had belonged to other people." 

Excellent Women by Barbara Pym (1913-1980)

 

 

“I said "Somebody should do something about that." Then I realized I am somebody.”

 Lily Tomlin

 

 

 

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« Rock, roll (and recuperate) | Main | Christmas in July »
Monday
Aug052013

King's Row anyone?

Darn you, eBay.

Since they added the ‘here’s some listings from your recent searches” on the home page, I’ve been sucked into perusing 1960s and 70s dresses that I have no business looking at. Well, I bought one. It fit but I just didn’t like it on me. So the dress is headed for Etsy.

I have a weakness for fabric-covered buttons and psychedelic prints.

I was intrigued by the label, King’s Row, which, of course, sounds similar to ‘King’s Road’ in London, home to 1960s avant-garde boutiques like Granny Takes a Trip. But which company issued the King’s Row label? By searching the RN number, it was revealed that the manufacturer was Puritan Fashions!

Puritan Fashions, a Boston company that had been around since the beginning of the 20th century, helped introduce British mod fashion to the U.S. Aided by Paul Young, a British entrepreneur, Puritan launched the Youthquake label in 1965 bringing in designers like Mary Quant, Sally Tuffin and Marion Foale and fostering young American talent like Betsy Johnson. At this time London had a number of forward-thinking boutiques, but the U.S. fashion industry was fairly staid in its approach to the youth market. So, the establishment of Youthquake led Young (who was inspired by Biba in London) and Puritan’s CEO to open Paraphernalia in New York, a ‘happening’ store that brought together music, fashion, art and popular culture to give American youth their own shopping experience.

I own a metallic knit Youthquake dress that I bought decades ago, which I used to wear to art exhibition openings in London in the early 1990s. It was far too short for me to consider wearing in Boston. Note that the delightfully flouncy sleeves are as long as the dress.

I love the label.

So it seems that Puritan also had the King’s Row label (again capitalizing on British fashion), but I can’t find out when or why. The King's Row clothes for sale online appear to cover the early to mid-1970s. If anyone knows more about this label, please let me know.

Like the ice-blue dress in my last post, I seem to be finding lots of 1970s vintage at the thrift store (I’m guessing no one else wants it). Since I have a dearth of short sleeves in my wardrobe, I picked up this early 1970s knit dress (no label) and shortened it (thanks to everyone who offered that advice for the ice-blue dress).

For the bag, I broke out my textile paintsand painted gold stars on the Tyvek-like fabric (when it comes to crafts, rather than ‘put a bird on it,’ I put a star on it) and made new straps out of star-print fabric.

The general style of the dress reminded me of this one by Betsey Johnson for Alley Cat, from an editorial in the March 1974 issue of Seventeen magazine.

The print of little pink flowers springs recalls the sweet floral prints of the early 1970s, for example, on these Butterick patterns for Betsey Johnson/Alley Cat designs.

Source

Source

In addition to filling out my summer wardrobe with short-sleeve dresses, the thrift store has me prepared for fall. A load of opaque tights by American Apparel had been deposited there yesterday. All looked to be unworn, perhaps just taken out of the package or used for display. Retailing for $16 - 25 each, I paid 99 cents each.

A dozen just-washed tights in lovely fall colors.

I pulled something out of my closet last week and thought, "this would look great with a pair of mustard-colored tights." Now, I have two pairs of mustard-colored tights! It's like the Law of Attraction or something.

Joining in with this week's Visible Monday.

Reader Comments (10)

WOW, the thrift gods were definitely smiling down on you when you nabbed those opaque tights! Mustard tights are a favourite of mine too.
I love your blue dress. And I really enjoyed reading the background on your Etsy find label. Too bad you don't like the dress on you, but up and away to a new good home.

August 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMelanie

Opaque tights! Now that's a score and a half! I love that pretty dress on you and absolute love the dress headed fro Etsy, that's going to make someone very happy! xxx

August 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterVix

Oh I do love some vintage label history! The dress is a beauty, fabulous print and colous, what a shame it wasn't quite right for you, but I am sure it will find it's rightful owner through Etsy!
Love your thrifted dress, I like a bit of 70s polyester action! Great patterns too.
Fabulous luck with the tights - I get all mine from charity shops too. xxxx

August 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCurtise

I remember Alley Cat, and I loved those designs - just as pretty as your blue print dress today! Great score on the tights, you are set for cooler days : > Thanks so much for sharing with Visible Monday and have a great week.

That's really interesting about Puritan owning that King's Row label. I don't remember ever seeing that label, but I'm betting it was issued after the success of Youthquake, in a lower price range. Puritan was big business, but Youthquake and Paraphernalia aside, they weren't exactly cool. That dress is definitely cool! It makes me wonder if the un-cool guys at Puritan actually thought it was King's Row rather than Road.

That first pattern has always been one of my favorites. It pretty much sums up the look of the early 1970s.

August 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLizzie

Wow, you got lucky on those tights! You'll never have to buy another pair.

Thanks for the info on King's Row and Youth Quake. It's really fun to find out the stories behind the labels (when the story is more than just "rip off design and have it made in substandard factory overseas").

August 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterVal Sparkle

Everything so cute! Look how contemporary those pattern illustrations look. Square toes will be back around soon, I'm guessing. Sad if it does ... not my favorite style on my already square little figure.
You, thought, look adorable and right in your element!

August 6, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJan Graham-McMillen

I like how you look in this blue dress, it certainly suits you perfectly. You were really lucky to find tights in so many colours. Good find for the coming autumn.

August 10, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterOlga

Look at all those goodies!

August 10, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I love hearing about the history of fashion labels, especially since those histories are dying and hard to uncover. Where did you get your info? The metallic knit is great. I hope you still wear it! Xo

August 16, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGrunge Queen

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