Subculture: The Hippies

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In the mid-1960s a youth movement arose in United States. Then it slowly turn into a revolution that inherited from African American cultural, it quickly spread to other countries around the world… The subculture: Hippies.

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To Hippies, the middle-class society is construct with materialism and repression, which makes them wanted to set wide apart from it. They had strong believes of anti establishment, disenchanted with traditional society. By developing their own lifestyle distinctively, they want to create a place without violence and hate, but full of love and peace instead. The most popular phrase in the Hippies “Make Love, Not War” and it is the aim they are fighting for. To resist the restriction from the society, they tried to free themselves by actuating open-minded and tolerance thoughts. But then the idea to get into a free world started leads them to open sexual relationships, drugs taking and living in various types of family groups.

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Outfit of hippies always includes bright-coloured fabrics with special patterns. Long flared skirts, bell-bottom pants, tie and dye garments, peasant style tops are signature of them. Native American jewelries, colourful scarves, headbands and long beaded necklaces are their favorite ornament to high lighten the look. The hippies usually have long hair, for males, they grew beards and for both male and female wore sandals as footwear. The outlooks reflect that they want the world to know that they are desperate for freedom and everything on them are natural. They live together as one with nature, expressing themselves in their own way. Until now, fashion designers use the garments of real hippies as their inspiration and primary idea, showing the culture on stage.

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The Hippies had a major effect on culture. It influenced fashion, music, movies, literature and arts. Folk and rock music plays a huge part in Hippies culture, such as the Beatles, the world known band was identified with the movement. With their popularity, the message of peace from their song spread wide range in America. Also with The Beatles’ appearance, push the Hippies movement even more forward.

I have so much interest in the fashion style of Hippies because it brings a happiness and joyful feeling, also the natural colouring and unusual patterns catches anyone’s eyes. There are lots of interesting elements developed though the culture. Introducing them into fashion would be playful and creative and it could definitely help my insight in fashion designing work.

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