If you dont know who Thea Porter is then that hole in your life is about to be filled. Culture-vultures this is a name dropper worth 1000 cool points. Before Sienna Miller swooped in there was Thea Porter, the first bohemian babe. Credited with bringing what we now call boho from the Middle East to the UK, chances are you have something lurking in your wardrobe inspired by this goddess of a woman.
We got some serious girl crush in the office so we are offering you the chance to win:
- A pair of tickets to Thea Porter 70s Bohemian Chic
-A £75 Beyond Retro gift voucher
- A sassy Seventies inspired Beyond Retro goody bag
Thea Porter: 70s Bohemian Chic is on at the Fashion & Textile Museum, SE1, until 3rd May
Launched last month, the exhibit explores the far- Eastern wonderments of Theas design inspiration with 150 textiles, garments, artwork and photographs. Delve into her 1930s family life and her evolution as a designer, not to mention her influence upon modern-day boho babes. Whilst it may not quite be kaftan weather, 70s boho-chic and Lebanese music are the order of the day. Expect a few flashbacks of you in that gypsy skirt circa 2004.
Born in Jerusalem and brought up in Damascus, Porter studied in Beirut before landing in London in the mid-60s, and boy are we glad she did. The designer set up on Sohos Greek Street selling ornate furnishings, counting The Beatles as one of her customers. Cool, right? Well it gets cooler. Porter created the embellished jackets and sassy shirts Pink Floyd wore on the cover of their first album, Piper at the Fates of Dawn with her own fair hands.Venetia Porter collection / Image © V&A Photographic Studio
Porter soon brought flowing robes, signature kaftans, Chazara jackets and a best-selling shirt dress made from Damascus tablecloth fabric. An exotic fusion for London kids who were knee deep in go-go boots and Op Art. She joined Ossie Clark and Bill Gibb who were caught up in a wave of ethereal romanticism, soon becoming a regular on the pages of Vogue. Did you know the blue dress Kate Moss was photographed in the day before her wedding was in fact a Thea Porter original? Yup. Google it again.
So there you have it, the woman who spearheaded a bohemian renaissance for Swinging Sixties Brits. Thanks, Thea.
For your chance to win just answer the following question:
When did bohemian fashion first become popular?
Please email your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org with Thea Porter in the subject header and your answer in the body of the email.
Entries must be received by Sunday 29th March at 11:59pm.
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Words by Hannah Wilkinson