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'70s Summer Fashion Series: Part 1

Young Professionals Summer Bohemian Fashion

Ladies: Want to add a little spirit into your summer wardrobe?  How about taking a cue from the 1970s? The ‘70s has been a big trend with fashion this season.  The “Me Decade” was filled with a variety of fashion influences like the bohemian essence of Joni Mitchell and Stevie Nicks, Halston’s Ultrasuede shirtdresses, and Studio 54’s disco fever.  I’m not telling you to break out the leisure suits, but I am urging you to add some ‘70s threads to your wardrobe this season. 

For this fashion series, I’ve picked three ‘70s fashion influences that I believe can be translated into a modern woman’s wardrobe for both workplace and casual wear.  I’ll be showcasing outfits from each trend displaying their versatility and showing how to transition them from the workplace to the weekend or evening.  I love presenting versatility with outfits because when I personally shop, I usually don’t buy a garment unless it can be worn at least three different ways.  I will also provide a personal touch of my inspiration behind each outfit.

Young Professional 70s Bohemian Fashion




As the ‘60s faded, the hippie culture from that decade continued into the early ‘70s. In modern usage, the word “bohemian” refers to someone who lives an unconventional, usually artistic life.  Today, the style term “boho chic” represents a fashion style that draws inspiration from bohemian and hippie cultures of the ‘60s and ‘70s.  Two easy ways to emulate the bohemian style today is to invest in a peasant blouse and a boho dress.  Peasant blouses are available at numerous retailers and are flattering for most body types. Boho dresses can come in a variety of prints, lengths and cuts that can work for all ages.  Below I’ve displayed two outfits transitioning a peasant blouse from work to weekend, as well transitioning a boho dress from work to weekend.


Peasant Blouse – Work


You may think peasant blouses can only be worn casually.  With the right coordinating pieces, they can be made work appropriate.  For this outfit, I combined certain elements of the ‘50’s and ‘70s to make a business casual look you can wear to work.  The inspiration for this outfit came from my personal style philosophy of mixing elements of different styles that contrast one another to create one cohesive look.  I wore a bright coral and green floral-print peasant blouse with kelly green ankle pants.  I chose these pants because they are a great pop of color for the summertime and I wanted to contrast the billowy top with a structured bottom.  Ankle pants were made popular in the ‘50s through the mid ‘60s until the hippie culture and bellbottoms became prevalent.  I then accessorized this outfit with coral pointed-toe heels and dainty pearl jewelry to juxtapose the femininity of the 1950s with the liberated 1970s. 


Summer Fashion 70s Work Peasant Blouse


Peasant Blouse – Weekend


For the weekend outfit, I wanted to showcase a classic ‘70s silhouette – flared at the bottom.  Using the same peasant blouse, I just switched the ankle pants with light washed flare jeans for a relaxed ‘70s look. I accessorized with a straw tote bag and white wedges as typical summer add-ons.  If flare jeans aren’t your forte, then just exchange them with a pair of skinny jeans or shorts and you're good to go.  For more outfit ideas pairing peasant blouses and jeans, click here.


Summer Fashion 70s Weekend Peasant Blouse


Boho Dress – Work


I believe boho dresses can be worn at the workplace as long as you add a structured piece to the outfit.  I understand not all workplaces have the same dress code, but if you work in a creative or business casual environment, then maybe consider this next outfit.  The boho dress I chose to wear contains a paisley print with billowy sleeves and a flowy hemline.  I paired it with a blush blazer and ballet flats.  I wore flats to keep the look more professional because the dress is on the shorter side.  Also due to my tall frame, if I wore heels they would have added more length to my legs which was not necessary.  I belted the dress and blazer to define my waistline and kept the jewelry minimal with a white gold bracelet.


Summer Fashion 70s Work Boho Dress


Boho Dress – Weekend


Boho dresses are a summer staple on the weekends.  For this look, I channeled the gypsy romantic look of Stevie Nicks by leaving the dress unbelted and adding a taupe crocheted fringe vest along with some gladiator sandals and a vintage cocktail ring to continue the bohemian style. Leaving this outfit unbelted gives it that relaxed and free flowing vibe that would be great for strolling along at a farmer’s market.


Summer Fashion 70s Weekend Boho Dress


Boho Dress – BONUS

If you are interested in turning this boho dress from folksy to western, then swap the sandals for some cowboy boots and define your waist with an oversized brown belt as shown.


Summer Fashion 70s Boho Dress


The bohemian and hippie lifestyle of the late ‘60s into the early ’70s encouraged people to live a nomadic lifestyle and travel the world.  Easier access to travel led to fashion being influenced by all parts of the world.  One of those imports included ethnic and global prints. Stay tuned for the next installment in this 70’s summer fashion series – Ethnic and Global Prints.

Kristin Gredys is the Marketing Coordinator for Kidder Benefits Consultants, Inc. and the author of fashion blog Crazed Chameleon. Want to connect with her? Join her on LinkedIn or follow her blog at crazedchameleon.blogspot.com


Young Professionals Connection (YPC)

The Young Professionals Connection (YPC) promotes an environment that attracts and retains young professionals in Greater Des Moines (DSM). YPC connects young professionals to each other and to the community through social, civic, charitable and professional development endeavors. YPC members have unique opportunities to grow personally and professionally and forge lasting relationships. They engage, connect and form a foundation for their future in DSM. YPC is an initiative of the Greater Des Moines Partnership.