More in this section College fashions uncovered

The clothing chronicles

1950-1980

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1950

A lack of money influenced the appearance of one Royal Holloway student:

“Compared to your contemporaries you didn’t have a job so you were very badly off on the whole, dressed in second hand clothes and not at all fashionably dressed. I mean we must have looked awful. Most of us had our hair cut in any old way and we didn’t wear make-up except for the blasted balls” (RHC/RF/132/6).

1953

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The Bedford News carried out a survey about make-up use by the students (BC/AS/203/1/25).

Transcript

1955

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The Bedford News reported on an article in Vogue magazine which featured two Bedford students (BC/AS/203/1/36).

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1957

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In response to a claim that students from King’s College were better dressed than those from Bedford, this article described the fashion parade which took place to settle the debate. (BC/AS/203/1/48).

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1959

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Find out the outcome of another University of London fashion parade (BC/AS/203/1/55).

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1965

The arrival of male undergraduates at Royal Holloway prompted an amusing observation from a royal visitor. When Principal Marjorie Williamson accompanied Princess Alice around the college she recalled:

“We passed a very hairy young man, and Princess Alice said ‘Was that a Beatle?’”  (RHC/RF/132/8).

1970

A Royal Holloway student remembered the fashions she followed in the 1970s:

“I started college in the heyday of the mini-skirt…By the time I left RHC we had been through the maxi-length craze with its intermediary the midi-length. Towards the end of the seventies I took an MA course and the essential item then was jeans”. (RHC/RF/132/6)

1978

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A Bedford College student went to a fashion show which showcased the work of Ossie Clarke. Read her interview with the designer himself! (BC/AS/203/2; 12-1978).

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1980

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An account of the fashions and designers of the early 1980s (BC/AS/203/2; 10-1980).

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