The EBONY Fashion Fair toured the country annually from 1958 to 2009, bringing the latest couture to legions of Black women and men. The fashion show, created by Eunice Johnson, wife of Johnson Publishing Company founder John H. Johnson, was more than just a fashion show–it was a cultural event.
Reminisce and experience the glamour of one of the most memorable African-American touchstones from the creators of EBONY magazine, the Fashion Fair.
According to retrowaste.com, “1960s fashion was bi-polar in just about every way. The early sixties were more reminiscent of the 1950s—conservative and restrained; certainly more classic in style and design.” These trends were reflected on the runway of the fair.
For women, “styles were very flamboyant. Extreme, bright colors were in high demand and long, flowing skirt and pants were everywhere,” according to retrowaste.com. And for men, “clothing got tighter and tighter.”
Black models on the Fashion Fair runway featured vibrant colors and extreme accessories for men and for women.
Eighties fashion was all about exaggeration. From big shoulders, asymmetrical silhouettes and shiny suits, nothing was off-limits.
For women, “attire was bright, flashy, and especially tight,” according to complex.com. For men and women, fabrics changed color and jeans came pre-ripped. There was also an emphasis on style being fun.