Dusty Springfield

Born: London, England, 1939
Died: Henley-on-Thames, England, 1999

One of the greatest divas England has even known, Dusty Springfield today remains as one of the most talented blue-eyed soul singers there has ever been. Her style, much like her music, thrust her into the spotlight and has given her a much deserved status as one of the leading style icons of the swinging sixties

Born Mary O’Brien in North London, 1939, Springfield did not conform to the expected standards of a girl in that age, instead preferring to play football with boys, labelling her a tomboy and earning her the nickname ‘Dusty.’ She was brought up in a musical household and she listened to a wide range of music, varying from American Jazz to more Classical Jazz. Springfield particularly admired the voices of Jo Stafford and Peggy Lee and recorded herself singing an Irving Berlin song at a recording shop in Ealing, only age twelve.

Springfield’s unique style was one that was instantly recognisable and obtainable. Her oversized, light blonde beehive and large, made up ‘panda eyes’ gave her a distinctive glamourous look, one which she had taken inspiration from beauty queens before her such as sensual French actor Brigitte Bardot and socialite Catherine Deneuve, yet, had injected her own daring and alternative sense of style into the mix. The sixties were all about colour and glam, and Dusty’s dress sense definitely reflected this. Eric Plant was the man behind the dresses that were so elaborately designed with such heavy embellishment. However the glamour did not stop there, the dresses were designed in such vibrant colours such as bright pink and blue, with particular embellishment detail paid around the neck and chest reflecting the allure and brilliance of the sixties.

Dusty Springfield is praised for her success in the music industry; having been inducted into both the US Rock and Roll and UK Halls of Fame, her success is legendary internationally, having been as big a hit in the States as she was in England.

Dusty Springfield Biography

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Written by Sabina Rouse

Sabina Rouse, current English Literature student at the University of Reading in her second year. She enjoys writing for the Fashion and Beauty sections of the University Newspaper Spark* in addition to contributing to the online magazine Lust and Found. Sabina writes for the Biographies section of Catwalk Yourself.

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