Swinging Vogue

Swinging Vogue

 

I’m in the middle of a house move and starting to shift things around into piles, which inevitably has led to a ridiculous amount of time-wasting tangents. I came across my Vogue Knitting collection and fell in love all over again.

Although vintage Vogue Knitting magazines aren’t exactly hard to come by, their value has shot up in recent years with early issues from the  1930s sometimes tipping into three figures. I often talk about the fact that my Mum’s 1950s VKs started a lifelong passion in me – it’s easy to wax lyrical about the superb ’30s and ’40s designs (and wax lyrical I do), but the later issues from the ’60s don’t often get a look-in which is a shame, because in many ways they are equal to their earlier forbears.

Admittedly there was a patchy period in the early ’60s where their designs can be a little humdrum (save those still elegant patterns which showed a nostalgic reluctance to let go of the ’50s). These were the final years of the Condé Naste reign. Ironically the design pace started picking up in the mid-60s  towards the end of its publication … it was re-launched in 1967 but finally threw in the towel in 1969 due to declining readership.

But what a last hurrah! The last few issues saw photography by the likes of Bailey, Norman Parkinson and Vogue stalwart Eugene Vernier, plus swinging ’60s designs modelled by Twiggy and Jean Shrimpton. There’s no denying that the imagery helped tremendously (you’d expect nothing less from Vogue), and you might even say that without the models and excellent photography some of the designs themselves would suffer. Context is everything.

Having said that you can’t deny the impact of the vivid colours, daring fashions, geometric designs … hand knitting was still up there on the high fashion agenda, possibly never to be this cool again. Still not sure? Just take a stroll through some of the images below for a few highlights …

 

 

 

 

 

 

60vogue9

60vogue8

60vogue5

60vogue3_a

60vogue4

60vogue2

60vogue1

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