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The buying power of Baby Boomers began to be felt in retail in the early 1960s. The June 1961 issue of "Handbags & Accessories" included an article on Teenage Trennds for Fall 1961 on pages 34-35.

Fashion's delight in versions from bomespun to Kooky news. Here's your preview of Seventeen's Fall Trends' showing this month in New York with special emphasis on accessory coordinates

Teenage girls heading back-to-school this fall will wear fashions ranging from homespun favorites to new views on the Kooky look. But, according to Mrs. Rosemary McMurtry, fashion director for Seventeen Magazine, the new spice in the back-to-school recipe will be the flare in skirts, dresses, ensembles.
Colorwise, new fall fashions will light up with brilliant reds and yellows, new combinations in tartans, brightened winter navy's, new neutrals such as putty, oyster white and lightened gray, and confection colors for date clothes.
To preview for accessory departments a detailed color and character index of teen and junior fashions, here are highlights from the August and September issues of Seventeen. These fashions will be shown first at the magazine's "Fall Trends" showing, June 9, at the Waldorf Astoria, New York.

An eased silhouette in a modified princess illustrating the "Flair" is accentuated with Peter Pan collar.

SPORTSWEAR: Sweaters—The sweater that's longest on fashion is also longest in length this fall. The long, long sweater is done in classic shapes, off-beat stripes, unusual textures, wide variety of ribbings. It will be teen favorite in the sportswear wardrobe. Other important sweater fashions include: fluffy, puffy mohairs, some with unusual collars, others striped, or with young motifs such as braid down the back; cardigans, revamped along homespun lines reminiscent of the hand-knit Austrian or Tyrolean favorites; some in popcorn stitch or tweed texture; others with graduated patterns or solid trimmed with stripe details. The V-necked sweater is important, too, in ribbed knits, or with unusual stitches and generally bulkier lines.
Skirts—The homespun look is important here. These folksy fashions have touches of embroidery on full skirts; or homespun- textures on pleated skirts. Some are reversible with a different weave on each side. In coordinates, biggest development for fall, 1961 is again, the flare silhouette, achieved either through orthodox flared cuts or simulated by pleats that break for a flared look.
Pants—Stretch will be a new factor for the teenage market, due to wider variety this year, as well as lower prices. Stretch fabrics used include suede cloth, velveteens, floral prints, flannels and velours. The long pant is new in home-spun-look fabrics. Newest look, however, is the knee pant which replaces the bermuda short in promotional emphasis for back-to-school. Some knee pants are shown with slit skirts over them; others are cuffed. Culottes continue; as well as knickers.
Shirts—The major trend is in collarless shirts, away from the rolled sleeve varieties, which have been replaced by an emphasis on barrel cuffs. Colorwise shirts continue the sportswear picture of bright colors. Prints are on dark grounds, brightened with vivid accents. Also prominent is the provincial look, achieved through embroideries, small prints, etc.
CASUAL DRESSES AND JUMPERS: Lowered waist lines leading to flared effects of pleats, gores or bias skirts set the major trend. Both jumpers and casual dresses are generally softened in line. Colorwise they range from bold red and yellow checks to soft putty neutrals. New in importance is navy, teamed with tartans in scarves, little jackets, other accents. For teens and juniors, licorice striped cotton will be a new hallmark for casual dresses; these in black and white stripes trimmed with white or black collars and cuffs are a good foil for red, wine and magenta accessories.

The casual dress combines two important silhouettes - the lowered waistline and the flair.

DATE DRESSES: The confection look of soft pastels will be the most heavily promoted date dress for fall. In chiffons, organzas, silks, velvets and failles, the colors used are such shades as "sea foam", "casaba," "cantaloupe" and "baby blue". The silhouette is softer, more relaxed shaping with easily fitting princess lines or gently full skirts—nothing is pinched or tight. For little date dresses, the printed wool makes most impact.

The "Flair" silhouette is interpreted in a princess syle wool date dress for teens and young juniors.

COATS: Here again the silhouette is relaxed with flare lines. Many are touched with fur, in ascots or cuffs. Fashion colors continue in coats. This year's fake furs really look fake. Newest trends are the raggedy dalmation, the snow leopard, and curly lamb. Such furs are big and bold in liners, as outside trim, or as the coat body. In car coats and runabouts, the laminated look on jerseys, wools, suede cloth, etc., is predominant; also the fur look in liners, cuffs and trim. Car coats cover a range from short ponchos to hooded eskimo jackets. Especially notable is a red laminated coat, lined in fleece and piped in casual wool.

THE KOOKY LOOK: This off-beat style trend which Seventeen first featured in October, I960, reaches its real strength in back-to-school. The Kooky Look is achieved through styling fabric and/or color, and runs the gamut from sportswear to sleepwear.
HANDBAGS: Silhouette—The newest elongated north-south silhouette is a great look with the dropped waistline fashion for fall. It is exaggerated for sportswear, modified and smaller for suits and dresses.
Other trends are the large, pounched village type bag; the satchel; the east-west continues but it is not newsy. Occassional shoulder strap versions for sportswear and muffs make news. Leather, fabric, furs—Smooth and textured leather represented both on their own or combined; much excitement in the plastic leather-like grains which are diffcult to tell apart from real leather (unusual are the antiqued, stained pseudo-leathers, and quilted smooth fake leathers). There's news in winter patent in color and black used as all-over bag or trim; elegant alligator print on calf.
In fabrics—jutes in solids and woven designs are handsomely trimmed with black leather, also putty and mahogany; laminated knits; widewale corduroy; great new rug bags. Tapestry continues, and most exciting are vibrant paisleys on wool, corduroy, velveteen; also a range of colorful velveteen.
In fur—bunny fur in color; colored hair calf; opossum; fake fur in otter, dalmation, tiger, zebra, shearling in white and off-white.
Colors—The important promotional colors are magenta, otter, green, quartz, bright red, wine red and ginger. Gray, emerald green and navy are of some interest. Mahogany and black continue to be good.
Details—Less hardware; much soft seaming (as in a foot ball) for sportswear; hand-stitching; perforations; some modified shirring; exciting fringed leather for sportswear.
BELTS: Sharkskins are news. The tie-sash continues, but worn lower. Many hip belts and chain belts will appear.
GLOVES: Longer lengths; sets of scarves and gloves, bag and gloves, notebooks and gloves. Matching jersey six-footer scarves and gloves will be popular with teens. For dates—satin stretch shorties in pastel confection tones will complement date dresses. NECKWEAR: Abstract prints, brightened paisleys, six-footers in new fabrics such as jersey and fake fur.
HOSIERY: With the bold color craze continuing in fall ready-to-wear, hosiery colors are more understated. Dusky, grayed-off plum shades for bright magenta; burnished golden-hued nylons for spice shades. of curry, paprika, ginger and cinnamon; shadowy olives or bronzed green for olive and yellow-green fashions; rich, deep browns for dark espresso brown ready-to-wear; nylons with a slightly red cast for apparel in reddened browns.
JEWELRY: Lots of chain, draped and pinned. The chatelaine look; leather beads; heavily jewelled pins replacing enameled heraldics; longer length necklaces continuing; large colored wooden beads; large important pins.
HEADBANDS AND MILLINERY: Bows are important, particularly on the smallish side to be placed behind ear, on side, on top, etc.; tiny fluffy pillboxes, halo headbands with face veils, headache bands with bows attached, pleated bands; plushy ear muffs for cold weather. The souwester is millinery silhouette news. It looks especially well with the flare silhouette. Souwester's are shown in small versions such as eton caps with visor toward back; and regular large version. The soft beret is important in solids and plaid; also the cloche; the breton with flat crown and minimum size brim gently curved upward; scottie cap; beanie gob; the crusader hood—very deep; stocking caps. Colors include bright red, wine red, magenta, emerald, moss, navy and gold. Fabrics and fur range the large furry hat in long and short hair; fox, real and fake; opossum, bunny, fake otter, shearling. Shapes, the fur ball, pillbox, pixie, cossack. Fabrics include angora, mohair, all knits, velvet, fuzzy orlon, leather and t.iwool

A long jester sweater with its own scarf topped with tassels tops a short flared knee-twister.

Pages 36-37 of the June 1961 issue of "Handbags & Accessories" further explore the teen taste for Back to School 1961.

"Teen World"—a new adventure in coordinated selling is available to you through the medium of the Teen Boutique. Exciting color, decoration and stock create consumer interest. "Kooltie" fashions, enthusiastic sales people and aggressive advertising spell additional profit and volume. Plan now for fall!

The tiger's roar is this fake fur bag and contour belt from Garay, 33 E. 33 St. The belt's buckle and handbag's catch are gleaming brass. Etienne Aigner, 22 W. 32 St. makes an exciting set in nubby imported Belgian linen with handstained cowhide trim. Nail-heads decorate the bag and the belt is leather bound

TODAY'S teenager has definite ideas of her own. She wants a special department in 'which to shop fashions strictly for her and catering to her wildest desires. Many retailers recognizing this need feature successful teenage boutiques in their upstairs "Junior World" and on the main floor — boutiques similar to the Roger Van S. adult corners. The proven success of the teen boutique indicates the buying power of the teenager. To help fulfill teen needs and increase your profits with multiple coordinated sales, we suggest the establishment of a teen boutique in your store.

Textured Belgian linen and hand stained mahogany cowhide bag coordinates with classic straight belt from Etienne Aigner, 22 W. 32 St. A. E. Phelps, 347 5 Ave., offers roomy tote in natural linen with snap closing, mahogany trim and matching belt. Belt is worn on the bag or separately.

This season's boutique could reflect the "Kooky Look". This "look" is illustrated in large, pouchy handbags teamed with coordinating belts promising two sales where previously there was one. Headbands in every shape and color, eton caps, berets, bretons and fur balls are included. Kooky sweaters of mohair, homespun wool and synthetics in long loose shapes could sell with that extra belt to sash in the tiny teen waist. Snakeskin tie-sashes in exciting fashion colors worn low on the hips promise teen appeal. Popular abstract scarves attractively displayed go well with the prevailing casual aura. As the piece de resistance—jewelry—in all the new shades, hot, cool, and appealing. Headline the corner with a "way out" title having special significance to the teens in your community. We suggest such novel names as: "Beams for Teens," "Krazy Kat Korner," or for the more conservative, "Teen World."
The salesperson is a very important aspect of this operation. Teens identify with the person in authority, therefore, your sales-getter must be attractive, energetic and as enthusiastic as the teens who flock to her for advice. Her expert suggestions, if sincere and accurate, will increase teen confidence, teen purchases and your profit.
You must promote the boutique through store and window displays and newspaper bullet advertisements to introduce your customers to the wonderful world of accessories awaiting them at your "Teen Boutique."
Another column on page 44 of the June 1961 issue, "Research for Profit" by BEATRICE JUDELLE, put numbers to the sales power of teens in 1961. The data is derived from Seventeen Magazine.


Two new studies of high school girls and college freshmen help analyze the back-to-school market and its profit potential. Both are recent surveys by Seventeen Magazine of girls' back-to-school buying—how many buy each item, how many items and how much spent per girl, etc. The total figures:
• High School: $167.70 per girl for things to wear (That's $975 in 2006 dollars!); $10.18 (That's $60 in 2006 dollars!) for things for fun and work.

• College Freshmen: $367.25 per girl for things to wear (That's $2133 in 2006 dollars!); $73.02 (That's $425 in 2006 dollars!) for fun-work items. They spend more than at any other time in their college years.\\

Ask for:"The High School Story 3," and "The College Freshman Story #9" from Seventeen, 320 Park Ave., New York 22."

Keep in mind, this is long before computers, MP3 players or even TVs were basic equipment in a dorm room!

Categories: 1961

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