How Ukrainian Youth Dressed: Rebellious 1970s and 1980s. Photo Story

Olena Pobochii

Outfit can tell a lot about a person. For Ukrainian youth, the 1970s and 1980s were the time of abandoning the values of those times and searching for self-identity.

In the photos, we show what the fashion of progressive young Ukrainians looked like half a century ago. It is the first material in the series.

For Ukrainians, the 1970s were the beginning of the awareness of their national peculiarity. At that time, the Soviet regime became somewhat weaker. Folk music began to appear in Ukraine and subcultures came from the Western countries as a completely new concept.

At the same time, youth clothing became bolder and brighter, sometimes using national motifs. Girls and boys were increasingly paying attention to their appearance and trying to stand out from the crowd. It’s a period of bell-bottom trousers, long hair regardless of gender, and bold miniskirts.

Lviv hippie, 1975

Photo by Oleksandr Bigun

Lviv hipster girls, 1975

Photo by Oleksandr Bigun

Hippie boys and girls outdoors, 1975.

Photo by Oleksandr Bigun

Alik Olisevych, one of the first hippies in Lviv, 1975.

Trendy outlooks in the Ukraina magazine, 1970s.

Stylish girls through the lens of photographer Vili Furgalo, 1970s.

Students of Kyiv National Linguistic University (then Kyiv State Pedagogical Institute of Foreign Languages), 1975.

Photo by Oleksandr Semenov

The girl on the cover of the Ukraina magazine, 1977.

The changes in Ukrainian society that began in the 1970s were even more extensive in the next decade. More subcultures appeared, young people dressed brighter, sometimes even aggressively.

The image of a stereotyped decent Soviet person was breaking apart. Instead an active member of society came, who sought change and liberation from the iron curtain. It’s a time of jeans, sports coats, bouffant hairstyle, loud colors, and vibrant makeup.

Ukrainian metallists — Leonid Repeta and the band Nezaymana Zemlia, 1980

Girls through the lens of photographer Vili Furgalo, 1980s

Photo by Denis Denijen

Trendy looks in the advertising catalog Krasa i Moda (Beauty and Fashion), 1984

Lviv metalheads at a rehearsal, 1989

Photo by Denis Denijen

Kyiv punks at a party, 1980s

Punks from Kyiv in the Baltics, 1988

Fans of the band Kino at a concert in Kharkiv, 1989

Young people at the Chervona Ruta festival

Translator: Roman Klochko

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