Photo gallery: Dirty Dancing or The Great Gatsby? Get the looks for the Ragroof Tea Dances

80s inspired style. Outfit from intu Chapelfield. Photo Bill Smith. 80s inspired style. Outfit from intu Chapelfield. Photo Bill Smith.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014
2:56 PM

When it comes to fashion and the Norfolk and Norwich Festival there is one show that you must go to if you want to dress up and join the stylish set - welcome to the Ragroof Tea Dances, says fashion editor Emma Harrowing.

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20s inspired style, dress from Vintage Deli, Hector's Barn, Dersingham. Photo: Joe Black, www.joeblackphotography.com20s inspired style, dress from Vintage Deli, Hector's Barn, Dersingham. Photo: Joe Black, www.joeblackphotography.com

Fashion nearly always takes inspiration from a past decade. In the 80s, skirt styles were taken from the 50s and revamped for the new age. In the 90s, flares, cheesecloth shirts and Dr Marten boots propelled the 70s back into the style spotlight once again. Then in the early noughties 40s style midi skirts and blouses made a comeback and the 80s revival took hold. Now it seems that when it comes to retro fashion, anything goes as grunge (90s), logo t-shirts (80s), midi skirts (40s/50s), monochrome mini dresses (60s), all-in-one dressing - with matching tops and bottoms (70s/80s) are all the rage for this year.

It makes for easier dressing. All you need to do is pick the era that you like (or you have pieces of in your wardrobe), channel this through your outfit and suddenly your look is up to date.

As the Norfolk and Norwich Festival gets into full swing, there is a bit of a local rivalry between two of these vintage looks, caused by the return of the Ragroof Theatre. Those who enjoy the stylish art of dancing and afternoon tea will discover that this year the Ragroof Tea Dances fall into two camps - the glamour of the 20s and the fun-loving spirit of the 80s. With two shows, two styles and a dance-off between the Charleston and the Merengue, it’s time to pick a side.

For those who want to take a trip back to the glory days of jazz and partake in a Quickstep or Baltimore, The Great Gatsby themed show is for you. Women should dress up in loose fitting flapper style dresses and dazzle in diamonds to feel fabulously foxy doing the Charleston, while men can wear a three-piece suit with bow tie or a tuxedo. Hats are optional, but if you want to adhere to the style of the era, women should wear a glitzy headpiece or cloche hat, and men should adorn either a trilby or bowler style or top hat.

To have the time of your life and channel the spirit of the 80s, the Dirty Dancing themed show will see you channelling the spirit of Johnny and Baby as you learn the moves to the Kellerman Mambo. Adopt their style too with bodysuits and full skirts in pastels tones, cut-off denim shorts, t-shirts and lace up pumps for the women and a black vest and black trousers or jeans, or a tuxedo with a skinny tie rather than a bow tie for men.

It’s time to choose your corner.

• Ragroof Tea Dances take place on Saturday May 17, 1.30pm for the Dirty Dancing themed show, and Sunday May 18, 1.30pm for The Great Gatsby themed show. Both take place in the Adnams Spiegeltent. Tickets, £9, www.nnfestival.org.uk

Get the looks - see photo gallery of clothes on the top right of this story.

The Great Gatsby

Dress from a selection at Phase Eight. A selection of Phase Eight is available in Jarrold and John Lewis.

Three piece suit. Jacket £79, waistcoat £35, trousers £40, Burton.

Dirty Dancing

Blue vest top, from a selection at Blue Inc, Castle Mall.

Linen Broidery shrug, £55, East.

White Alana skirt, £199, Hobbs. A selection of Hobbs is available in Jarrold, John Lewis and House of Fraser, intu Chapelfield.

East side vest, £9.99, Blue Inc, Castle Mall.

Black skinny jeans, £28, Burton.

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