Sunday, July 24, 2011

Iconic 1960s Clothes From the Mod Scene

Youth Culture - Mods & Rockers 1960s - 1970sImage by brizzle born and bred via FlickrBy J Enright

Mod clothing is not defined by just a few specific clothes. This article will look at some of the well known and iconic 1960s clothes that most Mods would have somewhere in their wardrobe.

Desert Boots

Desert Boots were worn casually by 1960s Mods as they went well with both jeans and also suits. They were usually a beige or light brown colour suede boot with two to three or sometimes four holes. The boot originated from the army desert boot but became fashionable in the fifties and early 60s with the Beatnik Culture. The Mods adopted the boots with branded versions being available from Clarks but other cheaper non branded versions could be found by the Mods who were prepared to look around. Clarks re-introduced the Desert Boot in their classic range just a few years ago.

Bowling Shoes

Mods started wearing bowling shoes even before the majority of bowling alleys had sprung up in England. They were usually made of coloured leather or sometimes suede. Bowling shoes were lightweight cool and comfortable for dancing in! The black and white colours were the most popular but they came in all colours including red white and blue. Shops in Carnaby street like Ben Sherman, Merc, and The Face all stock bowling shoes. They have been adopted by the first, second and now third generation of Mods.

Cycling Shirts

Mods started wearing cycling shirts back in the 1960s, and the shirts have long been associated with mod attire. The shirts were made of lightweight cotton, usually with stripes around a high zip up round collar. Cycling shirts would be brightly coloured and usually have either the sponsor or makers name emblazoned onto it; as football shirts do these days. As these shirts were made for cycling, they too were also obviously cool for dancing in. A cycling shirt, Harrington jacket and a pair of Levis would be a fairly classic look for a mod.

Boating Blazers

Boating Blazers are part of the Mod fashion. These smart jackets were made of cotton or sometimes silk or mohair! Boating blazers are a fitted look, with 3 buttons, small lapels and sometimes a ticket pocket sewn above the right hand pocket. Boating blazers were usually brightly coloured with vertical stripes. Jimmy the mod played by the actor Phil Daniels in the film Quadrophenia, which is about the life of a 1960s mod, is seen wearing a black and grey striped boating blazer in the film. They can be worn during the day or on a night out A very smart look for any self respecting mod who wants to stand out in the crowd.

Pork Pie n Trilby Hats

Pork pie n Trilby hats were worn by 1960s Mods on their Scooters before crash helmets became compulsory. These hats not only looked cool they kept your head warm too! Normally made from felt, they had a flat top, a short crown and an indentation all round. These hats were usually made in dark colours black, charcoal grey, or chocolate brown. The hats usually have a band of silky material in the same colour about an inch in diameter fitted around the width of the hat. Purdy, the black mod in the film Quadrophenia kept his supply of French blues (speed pills) under his hat. The use of speed and other Amphetamines were popular with Mods to help support their all night dancing and partying lifestyle.

Mod clothing is not as narrow as just a few specific items of vintage clothing but at the same time, these iconic clothes from the 1960s are easily identifiable with the mod scene and are still prevalent with the third generation of Mods. There are a lot of retro styles available today that have kept to the original look and style but also there is vintage clothing for those that want the original authenticity.

Jim Enright is owner of Enrights Vintage Fashions which sells 1960s Clothes online. Jim enjoys the scootering scene and all things to do with the 1960s era.

Tel: 07775 893979

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