Inspiration: Barbara Hulanicki

Barbara Hulanicki OBE was born in Warsaw and raised in England. She is regarded as one of the UK’s greatest fashion icons. Barbara studied at Brighton Art School, and went on to become a fashion illustrator for Women’s Wear Daily, British Vogue, The Observer, the Times and the Sunday Times.

In 1964 Barbara founded the famous Biba Fashion Boutique, along with her late husband Stephen Fitz-Simon. Originally the business was run from their apartment as mail order but the popularity of Biba clothes demanded a store, which they opened in Kensington. The store was very decadent and lavishly decked out with Art Nouveau and Art Deco styling and furniture and attracted all kinds of wonderful people  like David Bowie, Marianne Faithfull and The Rolling Stones. I also read that Biba is where Anna Wintour got her first job in the fashion industry.

Barbara Hulanicki for Topshop

Biba closed its doors in 1976, but Barbara Hulanicki continued her successful career amd has designed all manner of things for all manner of companies like wallpaper for Graham and Brown and Habitat and clothing for Fiorucci, Cacharel and Topshop, she also designed interiors for a number of famous hotels and the regeneration of Miami Beach. You can learn more here.



  1. Mariana Asprey,

    Such an inspiration – you are clever Gwyn. Have been looking through her gorgeous vintage Biba images – soooo beautiful.

    1. gallantandjones,

      Absolutely Bewlay. I think the attention Biba got from the British music scene at the time, attracted everyone else in their hordes…