'70s clothes for men

Written by mary johnson-gerard, ph.d.
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'70s clothes for men
Men's clothing in the 1970s was marked by tie dye, bell bottoms and three-piece suits. (Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Clothing worn by men in the early 1970s was a continuation of the flower power styles that surfaced during the 1960s. Men's clothing of the '60s and '70s left an indelible mark on fashion, and glimpses of it can be seen surfacing in clothing today. Much of the clothing styles and fashion during the 1970s was androgynous, meaning it was appropriately worn by both men and women.

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The origin of bell-bottomed trousers is not recorded precisely, but they surfaced in the U.S. Navy in the early 1800s. The bell-bottomed craze that occurred in the 1970s in America actually started in Europe in the '60s. Bell-bottomed trousers were originally worn by women, but by the 1970s men had caught the bell-bottomed fever. In "Saturday Night Fever," John Travolta sported a pair of tight bell-bottomed trousers as he danced through the night. Bell-bottomed trousers were a hot item with rockers such as Jimi Hendrix.


Tie-dyed clothing is a symbol of the '70s and became popular with the young men who opposed the war in Vietnam. Young people would take old crumpled T-shirts, tie strings around them and then dip them in cheap dyes. This process made all kinds of psychedelic, colourful designs. Men wore tie-dyed T-shirts, head bands, kaftans, bell-bottomed trousers and some even slept on tie-dyed sheets.

Platform Shoes

Platform shoes were a popular androgynous clothing trend for men during the 1970s. Platform shoes had a wide and high sole which lifted the foot anywhere from 2 to 4 inches. It was common to find platform shoes that had both the toe and the heel of the shoe elevated. One advantage of platform shoes for men was that they made them taller. Platform shoes did not go out of style; they have just been restyled with the times.

Three-Piece Suits

A very hot, trendy style from the 1970s for men was the three-piece suit. These suits featured a coat or jacket with wide lapels and a short matching vest. The suit trousers were tight-fitting through the thigh, had a high waist and were often bell-bottoms. Often they were made of polyester in shades of powder blue and light green. They were also made in loud, garish plaids.

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