Winter Clothes in the 1960s

Written by catherine mezensky
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Winter Clothes in the 1960s
Winter clothes in the early 1960s had a definite modern style. (George Marks/Retrofile/Getty Images)

Cold weather clothing styles changed dramatically from 1960 to 1969. While men and women wore modern streamlined clothes earlier in the decade, wildly coloured unmatched garb was in style by the end of the period. Coats varied, from Empire style to the maxi to the pea coat. Children's winter clothing styles resisted these trends and remained fairly conservative.

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Women's Cold Weather Styles

At the beginning of the 1960s, winter clothes were simple, modern and stylish, as influenced by Jacqueline Kennedy. Winter suits had big buttons, no collars and a rounded neckline. The Empire and princess styles were popular cuts for overcoats. Fur collars remained popular throughout the decade. Fitted knits and double knits kept women warm, and cashmere sweaters with shawl collars were popular. In the middle of the decade, pantsuits appeared. Women who still wore miniskirts in winter often wore maxi coats to keep their legs warm.

Men's Winter Dress

As with women's winter clothes, men's clothes in the 1960s started out simple and then evolved. In the middle of the decade, some men preferred the Mod look, which was streamlined and tailored. Tight trousers and Nehru jackets were in style, and turtle necks kept men warm. Brimmed hats such as fedoras were popular early in the decade but gradually fell out of style. As hippie fashions came onto the scene, men wore bolder patterns and brighter colours, paired with fabrics like velvet.

Unisex Fashions

By the end of the 1960s, winter fashions for both men and women included unisex items. Clothing came in wild colours and outfits often did not match. The popular pea coat was a double breasted wool, navy blue jacket. The name comes from the Dutch word "pij", which means coarse wool. Fur lined Afghani coats and vests kept young hippies warm.

Girls' Winter Clothing

During the 1960s winter clothes for little girls remained conservative. They were too young to wear wild clothes and many little girls still wore petticoats. For special occasions, young girls wore the classic little girls dress in winter materials. These dresses had a close fitting bodice, a sash and a skirt made of heavy wool or velvet. Even in cold weather, girls wore ankle socks until tights came into style during the middle of the decade.

Boys' Wear

During the Kennedy administration, young John F. Kennedy Jr. was photographed in a white suit with short trousers. Though this was in winter, many mothers rushed to dress their little boys this way. The Kennedys also popularised the Harris tweed coat for boys. The short pants suit was a classic style for boys, but as the 1960s wore on it was phased out. For special winter occasions, boys wore long pants suits made of warm fabric such as corduroy.

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