A Brief History of the Maxi Dress

Oscar de la Renta was the pioneer when it came to the maxi dress. A lacy cotton version made for Elizabeth Arden was featured in the New York Times in 1968 and the rest, simply stated, is fashion history. The wardrobe in the film Dr. Zhivago helped solifidy the trend when Julie Christie wore flowing romantic maxi dresses, and maxi coats over trousers.

Some of De La Renta's earliest designs 

Some of De La Renta's earliest designs 

During the beginning of the 1970s YSL, Dior, Halston, Biba, Ossie Clark and Cardin hopped on board the maxi train and all came out with their own stunning versions of the trend. Lace and cotton gave way to bohemian look and prints, included vibrant paisleys. The Moroccan caftan also came into vogue lending an exotic and hippie chic look. During the 1970s the maxi made a cameo appearance on the disco floor but slinkier in form with platform heels and disco ball earrings- hello, 70s!

A traditional 1970s Maxi in Vogue. 

A traditional 1970s Maxi in Vogue. 

For two decades the maxi disappeared as other fashion trends became mainstays but now they are back to stay (at least for awhile). The maxi of the 60s and 70s had more lace and went down to the ankles. The maxi of 2014 is a bit longer- almost touching the floor, and the fabrics are soft and luxurious. This style has always been a trend to take fashion from day to night without skipping a beat. Lunch and shopping to dinner in the city. 

A modern and flowey Ralph Lauren maxi 

A modern and flowey Ralph Lauren maxi 

When I was in high school we were neither allowed to wear mini dresses, because they showed too much skin, OR Maxi dresses which looking back I can't imagine the reason for that rule. Guess extreme lengths didn’t bode well in NJ and naturally I was sent home for both. Now girls . Makes for a rounded fashion experience and a lot more freedom of expression. 

A 1970s maxi made modern

A 1970s maxi made modern

 For years the three of us have collected our favorite Maxi dresses- for a bit of fashion history and because they are so wearable, fabulous and easy to update with accessories. Here we've paired a classic 1970s maxi with our tribal beaded bracelets for a boho vibe that is so summer arm party. We've recently started selling pieces from our vintage fashion archives. Each of these well curated dresses are one-of-a-kind and totally wearable. Check out our selection of dresses in our Frisk Vintage Shop on etsy. 

Be fabulous, xo Donna