The Shrimpton dress
When I first started collecting Blythes I was aware that they first appeared in 1972 and it got me wondering about the look of that year. It was still the Mod era and if the Moshlings were dressing contemporaneously, then they would have been riding their scooters in short skirted dresses like Mondrian Blythe wore in her stock outfit. It started a train of thought and I came up with the Rive Gauche dress with the tie, inspired by Yves Saint Laurent. That style later evolved into the Shrimpton dress.
It is of course named after the 1960’s English model Jean Shrimpton, David Baileys muse, who is credited with many things including being the first ‘super-model’, she was known as the ‘It Girl’ because of her prominence in Swinging London.
She went to New York in 1962 for British Vogue with her then boyfriend, the up and coming but rebellious photographer David Bailey. The pictures they took on that shoot, are fantastic, fresh, young and modern in a way that was totally new at the time. I love the fact that her teddy bear appears in practically every shot.
Incidentally, I found out that Jean Shrimpton had moved to Penzance in the 70’s which is just a short drive from the Moshi - Shed. I brought it up with my friends at my Friday afternoon sewing group and it turns out that one of them actually met her, and apparently another ex-model friend of hers who also lives nearly used to ride into Penzance on her horse to pick up groceries! She’s still seen around the town so I may bump into her myself one day, do you think she would like me to present her with a little dress?