Dame Mary Quant is having a moment—rather, another moment. The British fashion designer who has been credited with inventing the miniskirt in the 1960s is now, at age 85, the subject, along with Terence Conran, of the just-released pop culture book "Swinging London," which coincides with an exhibition at the city’s Fashion and Textile Museum. But the spotlight’s just on her in “Mary Quant,” across town at the Victoria and Albert Museum (on view through February 16, 2020).
The first international retrospective on the multihyphenate (she is also an illustrator and owned Bazaar, her London shop) features more than 120 garments plus photographs and her sketches from 1955 to 1975, when Quant utilized new mass-production techniques and simple, spirited styles to revolutionize how English women dressed. “We didn’t realize,” Quant says, “that what we were creating was pioneering.”