1965 Mary Quant Documented Black Playsuit with Crochet Bodice


This rare documented playsuit was designed by icon of 'swinging sixties' fashion, Mary Quant. After founding her 'Bizarre' boutique on the Kings Road, London, in 1955, she began experimenting with hemlines in the early 60s. In 1963, Mary Quant launched her ready-to-wear range globally through her subsidiary company 'Ginger Group' which was hugely successful. By 1964, she had created the thigh-grazing mini, so named after her favourite car. The freedom and wearability of the design was in stark contrast to the nipped in waists, restrictive undergarments and full circle skirts of the previous decade. Whilst French couturier, Andre Courreges, is often cited as the designer who raised hemlines, it was undoubtedly Mary Quant who successfully commercialised the mini dress.

This playsuit, created in 1965, was photographed that year on model, Vicky Eliot, at London's Transport museum. The label reads 'Mary Quant's Ginger Group - Made in England'. Tailored from soft inky black linen, it is cinched at the waist with a coordinating belt which is detailed with a polished gold-tone, oval-shaped brass buckle. The stand-out detail of this piece is the peekaboo crochet woolen bodice that reveals flashes of skin. A hidden zip secures the rear. This piece is in excellent archival vintage condition with no flaws of any note and worthy of museum acquisition. The playsuit would best suit a size UK 6 or US 2.


BUST: 32 in. (81 cm)

WAIST: 26 in. (66 cm)

HIP: 35 in. (89 cm)

LENGTH: 35 in. (89 cm)

Pickup available at CIRCA VINTAGE

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Will you set anything aside for me before I come?

We are happy to find anything you may be interested in from our website - please let us know a week in advance. 

We also have an extensive offline collection. If you let us know your size, style, favourite colour to wear and perhaps your budget, we can browse through our archive in advance of your appointment. 

Do I need to bring anything with me?

Clients may wish to bring modern shapewear when trying on garments from certain eras, especially the 1950s. Vintage clothing was often worn with undergarments that shaped the waist and as such is tailored for them.

We have a huge variety of slip dresses and petticoats to complete your look; many of which are also for sale.

You may also wish to bring your favourite footwear. We often find a classic pair of nude shoes work well when trying on, or a pair in gold or silver.

Do you have a price range?

Many of our lower-priced pieces (under £150) are not available to buy online. Our prices range from £80 - £600 for separates. Dresses start at around £150 and go up to £2,500 for the very best antique pieces and designer vintage. Our bridalwear ranges from £300 - £3,000.

Can I bring anyone with me?

Yes but please do let us know the size of your party in advance.

Where can I get alterations?

We offer some alterations in house. Should you need alterations we cannot provide, we can refer you to one of our tried and trusted tailors.

Do you have an after-care service?

We will advise you on the best way to clean and preserve your vintage pieces and can also recommend trusted local dry cleaners.

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You are free to cancel but please do give us as much notice as possible. If you cancel less than 24 hours before your appointment, you will be invoiced a late cancellation fee of £25.

Where's the showroom?

Our address is Circa Vintage, 87A Lansdowne Way London SW8 2PB

Upon arrival, buzz the 87A button on the gate or call us 020 7736 5038 to let you in.

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We offer free, secure, off-street parking but it is a tight squeeze – so do let us know in advance if you will be needing this and we can make sure that there is space available.

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Stockwell (7 min walk) - Northern and Victoria Lines

Nine Elms (9 min walk) – Northern Line


Wandsworth Road (13 min walk) – Westbound to Clapham Junction / Eastbound to Dalston Junction

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