No longer “society’s best kept secret” as the Saturday Evening Post called her, Ann Lowe is recognized as a pioneering African American couturier. Her pieces are preserved in renowned museum collections including the Smithsonian, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Museum at FIT.
The American Beauty dress embodies the dreamlike aesthetic of Ann Lowe, a frequently overlooked Black designer who was integral to the history of American fashion. This 1966-1967 gown highlights Lowe’s creativity, while still reflecting the simplified silhouettes of the 60s.
Flappers and mods rebelled against the traditional image of femininity held by the generations before them. Although their worlds were very different, their fashion and beauty ideals were remarkably similar.
Fashion in the 1960s became progressively more casual across all genders and ages. Womenswear followed three broad trends: a continuation of the previous decade’s ladylike elegance, the youthful styles of Mary Quant and the Space Age influence, and the late 1960s “hippie” style. Menswear saw an increasing amount of color and pattern, military influence, and new fashion icons in the form of rock stars. Children’s wear saw less change, but also became more casual and bright in color and pattern.
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