Free enamel pin when you buy any two Atlas Obscura products. Shop now.

What Women’s Wimbledon Outfits Looked Like in the Swinging Sixties

Meet Teddy Tinling and his tennis-themed minidresses.

In the lead-up to this year’s Wimbledon tournament, which is currently underway, Nike’s women tennis players have had to alter their own dresses after they proved too loose-hanging and prone to flying up. 

Such concerns did not apply 50 years ago.

In this video, shot in 1966, tennis dress designer Teddy Tinling shows off the swinging sixties outfits with which he intends to take Wimbledon by storm. We see what is described as the “tennis motif” stitched down the front of the dress and “garter” of the first model, guaranteed to have Center Court, says the narrator, “on its toes.”

Tingling, showing off his bling, certainly pays attention to the fine details of his creations. In terms of practicality, says the video, these designs are super-lightweight. You don’t need to be an expert in sportswear design to understand why. In fact it isn’t quite clear whether these dresses were for amateur players, actual professionals or just lawn tennis scenesters.

The video ends in hilarity: Tinling touches what looks to be a mannequin as the narrator mentions these dresses can bring a player to life. Turns out the dummy isn’t a dummy after all. Oh, Tinling!

Every day we track down a Video Wonder: an audiovisual offering that delights, inspires, and entertains. Have you encountered a video we should feature? Email ella@atlasobscura.com.