“There’s a new leading influence on avant-garde fashion,” wrote Georgina Howell in the Observer in July 1965. “The place to find the news in London is in the small shops. The girls who own and run them are designing or buying only clothes they would wear themselves”. Howell got the designer Min Hogg to look at the leading boutiques, one of which was Palisades at 26, Ganton Street, just off Carnaby Street.
Palisades was opened by Pauline Fordham just two months previously and the self-styled “Fun-Maker”, as the Daily Express called her, opened the boutique with “a rousing party”. She had backing from theatre impresario Michael White, artist David Hockney and actor/writer/literary agent Clive Goodwin (who was the husband of pop-artist Pauline Boty). It was considered the shop where designers of bits and pieces exhibited their talent and Fordham promised “all the usual way out designers including Quorum, Caroline Charles and Tuffin & Foale. The sign and interior was designed by the pop artist and partner Derek Boshier. She also stocked anything that anyone brought in “if it’s groovy”. And “customers could let of steam there too” she said, “there is a juke box and fruit machine”.
The Daily Mirror noted that she also sold Psychedelic goggles at 30 shillings each. They had built in glass prisms which make everything look multi-coloured and mixed up. Fordham, who designed them, said “they’re a good visual trip”.
David Mlinaric in an interview for the V&A website says of Pauline and her shop:
Pauline Fordham of Palisades had incredibly beautiful things, but didn’t last very long. She was a colourful character. The journalist Erica Crome used to refer to that kind of thing as fancy dress, and she used to refer to us as fancy dress too.
Would you like to support Flashbak?
Please consider making a donation to our site. We don't want to rely on ads to bring you the best of visual culture. You can also support us by signing up to our Mailing List. And you can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. For great art and culture delivered to your door, visit our shop.