1965 dresses were the start of something daring in fashion
These trends persisted even into 1965 dress styles; however, as the decade progressed, the fashion scene began to evolve dramatically. Hemlines were on the rise — leading to the introduction of the iconic mini dress — and waistlines were starting to lose their definition, in both sheath and A-line styles. Bold geometric patterns, bright colors, and psychedelic prints became the norm, echoing the energetic spirit of the time.
Fabrics also took a turn toward the futuristic, influenced by the ongoing Space Age. Shiny, synthetic materials like PVC and metallic fibers made their way into everyday wear. At the same time, the counter-culture movement and the growing popularity of folk music brought a resurgence of bohemian styles, with flowing fabrics and indigenous patterns.
Take a scroll to see how this transition was playing out in real time with photos of dozens of 1965 dress styles!
James Galanos mod draped dress in many colors
This 1965 dress of oscillating printed chiffon over matching heavy crepe gives a kaleidoscope effect
Geoffrey Beene hooded tubular dress with circle op-art pattern print
Slim dresses from the sixties
Left: Blue Flowers border this two-piece dress set off by white gloves and matching shoes. Simple in design, this jiffy outfit can be made sleeveless.
Right: Young and snappy is the byword with this pencil-slim dress in Sichel’s cornflower-blue linen with attractive contrasting polka dot dickey. One-piecer can be dressed up or down, depending on accessories.
Retro argyle sweaters and a sweater dress with matching socks (1965)
1965 “smalldresses” combining argyle & a tiny flowered pattern
Op-art fashion – Layered moire effect dress by Pauline Trigere (1965)
Wandering dots mod sheath dress (1965)
Shiny black and silver lacy dress from 1965
1965 shift dress of checkerboard fabric with printed squares
Silvery 1960s party dress with matching belt
60s nightclub dance dresses (1965)
Plaid taffeta dresses for nighttime
One-shouldered back and white taffeta with flounces, a plaided purple silk taffeta, and pink and purple plaid silk taffeta dress
1960s disco dresses in DC
At Jacques Vivien’s Whisky A Go Go in Georgetown, which, like many discos in the area, flicks on old flicks for the quiet hour.
That’s Adelene Lynch, Notre Dame College, ’68, near right, in a cool-shouldered hot-yellow wool-crepe dress bias-plaided with scarlet, navy blue. By Roban Sport (Malcolm Marshall fabric).
With her, Peggy Pickle, Mt. Vernon Junior College, ’66, who’s with it in a pullover slithered way down on a flarey camisole’d skirt — both bias-cut from wine/gold tattersall-checked wool.
NOW SEE THIS: Mod 1960s eye makeup styles took a walk on the wild side
White Dior shift dress from 1965
Simple 1965 designer dresses
DIOR: Superb simplicity in a sleeveless dress. Its soft belt ties in a bow in front. Of Anglo, delphinium-blue wool doeskin. Vogue Paris Original 1439.
PATOU: Blouson dress with a cord belt that ties in a bow above a deep, soft front pleat. Of Anglo grass-green wool crinkle crepe. Vogue Paris Original 1444.
Designer fashion from Paris in ’65
CARDIN: The pretty side effects here — a bow at the slightly lowered waist, a side-wrap skirt. Dress buttons at the back. Of Anglo lavender wool petit point. Vogue Paris Original 1443.
RICCI: Along softly tailored lines, a long-sleeved dress with a hidden closing that zips in front. We added the self-bow. Of Lesur spongy wool crepe. Vogue Paris Original 1426.
Home-sewn coatdress and easy-shaped dress with tie
Left: For versatility — a one-piece coatdress with a two-piece look. Fashioned in Gantree (an Orlon acrylic/rayon blend)the bodice is brushed low, the skirt splashed wide. We show it in checks; fabric also available in solids; about $1.60 yd. Size 12 teen takes about 4-7/8 yards. Scarf takes about yard. Butterick pattern #3424.
Right: Highlight your “new look” with a brightly colored ensemble. Patterned in Rustic Tweed — an acetate/rayon/silk blend — the jacket traces the hipline of an easy-shaped dress. A final stroke of perfection — boldly checked Chelsea tie to set off the trim button-down collar. Tweeds and coordinated checks; about $2 yd. Size 12 teen dress, jacket, and collar take about 4-3/4 yards. The necktie takes about 1/4 yard. Butterick pattern #3423.
Lively textured 1965 dresses in soft pastels
Left: A study in green — the ensemble look in a soft shade of mint. Peter Pan collared jacket complements a fluid-moving skirt; inverted front and back pleats for dramatic detailing. Designed in Dan River’s Dan Star; available also in a matching butterfly print. Size 12 teen takes 5-1/8 yards. Butterick pattern #3455.
Right: A party dress in paled pink crayoned on crepe. Soft ruffles define the jewel neckline, are retraced on the gently flared hem. Fashioned in Luxury Avron crepe, a blend of Arnel triacetate rayon, available in a full range of colors. Size 12 teen takes about 2-7/8 yards. Butterick pattern #3422.
Arnel triacetate jersey dresses for juniors (1965)
Two-piece dress. Floral print. Lined overblouse buttons down back. Skirt of close-set, stay-in pleats has side zipper closing.
Full-skirted dress. Polka-dot print with flattering horseshoe collar. Long back zipper closing.
Crystal-pleated dress, its graceful look complemented by the generous bow at the neckline. Side zipper closing.
Sheath of woven stripes, fully lined except the 3/4-sleeves, has elasticized waist for good fit. Two hip pockets. Long back zipper.
Mid-length vintage 1965 dresses
Four stylish 1965 dresses for shorter women
Tucked-bodice dress: Printed sheer of Dacron polyester and cotton has a skirt of stay-in pleats and smart accent of a rayon grosgrain belt. Step-in style, buttons to waist.
Princess skimmer of printed rayon and flax, lined with cotton to keep its flattering shape. Short sleeves; two pockets; back zipper.
Tie-collar dress looks as cool and pretty as a parfait in Dacron polyester batiste. Front of bodice is all dainty tucks… skirt a ripple of crisp, stay-in pleats. Back zipper.
Scalloped-collar dress of SuPima cotton broadcloth: Step-in style with buttons to waist; cluster pleats. French cuffs. Front bodice is lined. Harmonizing plastic belt.
5 trendy 1965 dresses that hit just above the knee
A. Peppy pleats stay sharp, swirly. Hi-rise dress, light mint green crepe of Dacron polyester, combines two-tone mini-checks with solid color. Zips in back.
B. Flower Power bursts into print… raspberry pink and orange on white crepe of Dacron polyester. Shift lined (except sleeves); low neckline, zipper in back.
C. Tiers of tucks beguile the front of this step-in shift. Zipper fly front.
D. White dots afloat on airy voile skimmer of polyester in cotton. In back, obi sash ties over deep inverted pleat, button closing. Squared neckline.
E. Fit and flare newly defines the button-front skimmer. Wide rib ottoman of cotton and rayon. Square armholes.
Demure pastel vintage dresses for juniors in ’65
A cutaway bolero and pink 1965 skimmer dress
Pink and blue vintage gingham dresses (1965)
Tween fashion for girls from 1965 – Dress and coat
It’s a Penney Tween! It’s for me — ’cause I’m almost teen-aged and I like to look sophisticated. Only Penney’s has Tweens — they kind of invented this 9-10 to 15-16 size. It has nothing to do with a girl’s age, but everything to do with good fit and good taste!
Take this Twin-Tween: Shifty acrylic and rayon sheath matches an acrylic crepe coat laminated to foam for shapelier tailoring.