The Mod Style Essentials


The Mod subculture started in the 1960s, it has gone through many revivals and carries on today, the Mods were all about fashion and music, the Mod movement started off on London in the late 50s but its height was during the 60s, Mods were modernist`s they were all about the latest fashion and music, it attracted young working class lads, there style was all about bespoke sharp suits, and sharp dressing, at the weekends mods would meet a cafes and listen to music looking good, band`s like the Small Faces and The Who were influenced by the Mod subculture, Mods were known for fighting with rockers, Mods favourite mode of transport was the scooter they chose Lambrettas and Vespas, there was a couple of reasons why they chose scooters, one was because the engine was encased in two side panels this stopped them getting oil over their fancy cloths, the other was because they were affordable and young lads could get the newly available higher purchase plans, and this is where the iconic Mod parka came in they wore them to protect cloths while riding their scooters, but by the mid 60s the Mod scene became to commercialised, their was company’s setting up Mod clothing collections, this went against what Mods were all about choosing their own style, it became to stylised instead of young people customising their own cloths.

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Mods on their Scooters

Over the last couple of decades the Mod subculture has gone through many revivals, in the 80s the classic film about Mods Quadrophenia  was made, in the early 90s bands like Oasis ,Blur, The Verve, were all influenced by the Mod subculture through their music and style, today the Mod subculture has spread to places like Japan even south Korea, Mod clothing brands like Lambretta  and Merc still sell Mod style clothing to this day.

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http://www.merc.com

Mod fishtail parka is one of the most iconic items of clothing associated with the Mod subculture, the original parkers were never meant for young  stylish Mods, they were made for the US army, so their troops could fight in cold climates, that’s what happened in the Korean war in the 1950s, it was a united nations war so Britain had to take part, but British troops were not equipped for the cold climate so America issued them with the fishtail parka, the name fishtail parka comes from the coat is shaped like a fishtail, this was so the coat could be tied around the legs for added wind proofing,  after the war hundreds found their way into army surplus stores, Mods first used them as an ideal garment for fending off the elements and protecting their smart clothing from grease and dirt, but soon they became apart of the Mod look with Mods sewing on badges and the iconic roundel on the back of their parka`s, it’s very hard to find original parka`s now with the fur hood, but company’s like Merc London continue to make this classic as close to the original as possible, but you can’t get a fur hood now because of an outcry by the fur lobby, but you can get a synthetic fur hood.

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http://www.bensherman.com

The original Mods were influenced by modern jazz, jazz came from America when jazz players came to the UK they wore fancy sharp shirts made by Brooks Brothers, very soon young modernist were looking for these shirts, because the shirts had to be imported certain importers were able to corner the market so the shirts became very expensive, one Man Ben Sherman saw a market for his own shirts, he quickly designed his own oxford shirts made from the finest cottons, he targeted the young mods soon his shirts were hit, among these were his Gingham and paisley shirts, to this day Ben Sherman continue make the finest casual shirts influenced by the Mod subculture.

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http://www.fredperry.com

In the late 50s young stylish mods were looking for stylish casual clothing, one of the items they chose was the polo shirts, the brand they chose was the Fred Perry polo, the main reason was Mods loved to dance all night but still look good, the Fred Perry polo shirt came with a collar and placket so it could be worn with a suit, because of its knitted piquaterial and its ability to retain its shape, Mods could dance all night in it then wear it again the next day, very soon suppliers were getting requests from streetwear fans for tipping on the collars and cuffs, Fred Perry loved the idea he gave his permission this design to made, it gained a nick name the Perry, since then Fred Perry has been heavily associated with the Mods and its music scene.

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http://www.adaptorclothing.com

Another classic that mods chose was the Sta Prest Trousers, they were originally invented and produced by Levi Strauss & Co, they were a wrinkle resistant trouser renowned for their sharp style and straight leg, also they came in a flat front, they were a practical trouser that looked good but also after being worn on a scooter for a couple of hours they still looked sharp and classy, Levi`s no longer make the Sta Prest trousers, but company’s like Relco and Warrior make a similar trousers called Sta Press trouser, they are still worn by young stylish men today.

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http://www.clarks.co.uk

Desert boots were the first casual shoes to be invented for casual wear, they were invented by Nathan Clark of Clarks shoes, he was serving in the second world war in Africa wear soldiers first wore desert boots, he came back to the UK designed his own boot, by the late 50s they became a casual classic, mods loved them for their simple straight lines and design, but one of the main reasons was the crepe sole its naturally gripped the road when riding their scooters, deserts boots have been copied by every fashion label going but the originals are by Clarks only.

There are many other pieces that Mods are famous for like Harrington Jackets and Ox blood tasselled loafers, the Mod cultures lives on with weekend scooter rally’s, and Mod music by the Jam and Paul Weller, open up your mind add a little Mod culture your wardrobe.

By

Bob Redfern

BE BOLD BE PROUD

Getting Stylish For 2015 Music Festivals


Yes it’s that time again music festivals are here, from the classic 1969 Woodstock to Glastonbury, T4 on the beach, V festivals, its been a right of passage for young people to pack their bags and get shit faced for the weekend, than talking about it for the rest of their lives, it’s a time where friends some times have their last get together, before they finish college or university and start their adult life, for some its their first adventure from home and being able to kick back and have some fun,what I love about festivals is you can wear what you want and no one gives a shit, you can wear loud or just dull, it’s about having fun listing to some great music then chilling with a beer, but what I have noticed for years women get noticed for their fashion at the festivals, but the boys don’t get a mention so I thought I would give the boys their own fashion guide for a change and a few tips from my experience’s at the festivals.

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Woodstock 1969 the Granddaddy of all music festivals

Festivals are normally held in fields yes fields so things can get dirty and very crazy, so when your going to festivals you need to pack the right things, other wise you   could be very wet and cold and pissed off that you have wrecked  a £100 pair of trainers, so the guide I’m going to do is not about fashion labels, its about looking stylish but practical.

The other key element is what you pack, remember your going away for the weekend, not for a week, so you need to keep it simple but light, my advise is always check the weather, when I started doing festivals over 20 years ago you didn’t know if it was going to rain or shine, but thank to modern technology we can get a seven-day weather update on our phones, so check the weather before you leave you Muppets, so think about what you need not what if this goes with this, you will be just carrying loads of cloths for bugger all, also if its muddy there’s a good chance all your cloths will get shitty to so more washing for nothing

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http://www.twitter.com/ArkAngelApparel

T- shirts yes it summer what else would you wear, my advise is let your hair down it’s a festival, get loud get some t-shirts with some great vivid prints, there are lots of company’s now that just sell great t-shirts like Johnny Cupcakes or Ark Angel Apparel, but stay away from the cartoon character ones you want to impress the ladies “right”, the other thing about t-shirts they are light to carry, so once you have ironed them you simply roll them tightly, then when you take them out of the bag quick shake their still crisp and fresh.

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http://www.tedbaker.com

Shirts now if you’re a stylish man you will always carry a classy shirt with you, but remember shirts can get wrinkled quick and if you’re in a muddy field there are no irons, so keep it simple pack a oxford shirt or a short sleeve shirt, style wise go for some polka dots or simple strips, if you can find a shirt with some amazing design buy it, shirts are also great for layering you could wear a t-shirt then a shirt over the top unbuttoned.

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http://www.riverisland.com

Shorts summer and festivals are all about shorts, the choice is up to you, denim shorts are classy also stylish, chino cotton shorts are your next choice great khaki, reds, navy, are good colours, but one style tip for you, if you wear a patterned  t-shirt go for plain shorts, other wise you will look like a walking comic painting,

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http://www.lacoste.co.uk

Chinos and Jeans yes I know its summer, but you never know if its going to rain or get cold, so my advise is always pack one pair, also if you wanted to leave the festival to go out and have a meal, you know you have the right cloths to go out if you wanted to.

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http://www.ralphlauren.co.uk

Hooded tops are just amazing at festivals, they are stylish but practical, there has been many morning I’ve gotten up in a field and its been a bit chilly, I just reached for my hoody pulled it on and I was toasty again, also when you pack up on the Sunday or the Monday you are on a comedown from the booze and partying, you feel like pants you simply slip on your hooded top, pull the hood over your head slip your earphones on your sorted ready for the journey home.

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http://www.sportsdirect.com

Jackets yes like I’ve said many times festivals are about summer, but the British weather does not give a crap about summer if it wants to rain it will, I always carry a Karrimor Jacket, they are light but stylish and practical, they will keep you dry and if you do role in the mud it simply wipes of cool, but the choice is down to you but personally always make sure you have jacket in your bag.

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http://www.purple-oval.co.uk

Footwear this is simply down to your choice, my advise is buy some cheap £20.00 stylish pumps, if they do get covered in mud and mashed up just chuck them in the bin, trust me I can tell you from experience save your money, about 15 years ago I went to a rock festival in some white Fred Perry Pumps, they cost me over £70.00 and yes it rained for two days solid in a field they were fucked, lesson learnt, flip-flops are a great choice if they get muddy you just wipe them down.

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http://www.chelseamegastorasia.com

Hats are not just stylish but practical too, think bout it your drinking all day out in the sun, you will get dehydrated very quick, so a hat keeps your head cool and covered, I love wearing a straw Trilby very dapper, or you can go for a classy bucket hat or keep it simple and wear a baseball cap.

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http://www.fostergrant.co.uk

Sunglasses are a must for all festival goers, but again they cost a lot of money, a couple of years ago I sat down and worked out how much I had spent on sunglasses that got broken or lost and stolen at festivals, I came in about £550.00, so if your going to festivals save your best glasses take some cheap stylish ones, Foster Grant are my choice and at about £20.00 a pair I could not be bothered what happens to them.

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http://www.sportsdirect.com

Towels now this is a free tip, it will save you the hassle of dirty smelly wet towels in your tent, simply buy a  travel towel its a special type of towel, that’s water absorbent,  its comes in a travel pouch the size of a face cloth, you unzip it, it opens into a full bath towel wipe your self dry fold it back up put it in the case all done no mess no dirty smelly towel, it will last you the weekend just wash it when back home.

If you do attend any music festivals this year stay safe and have amazing time in style of course

By

Bob Redfern

BE BOLD BE PROUD