Prue Acton was a women’s wear designer whose career spanned across the 1960s, 70s and 80s. She was the daughter of John and Gwen Acton, who also worked in her fashion business, est. 1963.

Acton started designing when she was 11 years old an after completing high school and began studies at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Melbourne in 1958. When she opened her fashion business in 1963, her studio was located the rag trade district of Flinders Lane, later moving to the Block Arcade.

Influenced by the trends of her era and Mary Quant, Acton’s designs initially appealed to a teenage audience. Her fashions sold well in the USA in the 1960s and enjoyed continued popularity in Australia until her retirement. She also designed the Australian outfits for three Olympic Games.

In 1991, Acton sold her fashion business and retired to the regional area of Monaro, New South Wales.

Examples of Acton’s work are held at the Powerhouse Museum and a major collection of her work is in the Museum Victoria, Melbourne.


Michael Bogle
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