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Mod to Suedehead

Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by Spirit of 69, Nov 19, 2008.

  1. cerneabbas

    cerneabbas Senior member

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    Blimey you put that post up whilst I was tapping away at mine,I shouldn't have bothered you said it much better than me.
     
  2. Natty Pinstripe

    Natty Pinstripe Senior member

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    YP a question from an older observer who never paid too much attention to The Casual look. How would you say the "smart" casual look compares to the conservative mod look, or if you like how it differs ?
     
  3. Inks

    Inks Senior member

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    Just had a look at the re-issue 'deluxe' edition of the '73 Quad album. There's a few more photos and stuff in there. There's a colour one of Jimmy/Chad Kennett sitting on the Vespa with desert boots on (rather than the what I'm guessing were the worst bowling shoes ever on the original cover shot). Yeah, definitely Staff Sgt ranks on the sleeves.
    I can't make out a US Army 'tab' on the front in any of the photos. If I remember correctly, the m51 and m65s were issued to most of the US services. I know the Marines and the Navy bought some from the Army. You could tell where the parkas were sourced with lads back when I was younger. They were usually de-patched, but you could still see the tell tale stitch marks on the sleeves. The chevrons for US Army PFC, Corporals and various Sgt ranks had downward chevron stitch marks and the airman's parkas had upward. Some still had the Airforce/Army tab on the front, but the name-tab was always removed. The oblong left behind was always less faded than the rest of the coat (like when the back-pocket comes of a pair of old jeans, revealing all it's indigo former glory)
    My old parka was a m65 bought from Andy's Army Surplus up at the arse-end of Portobello road (Just past the Westway) My old man was a mate of Andy and I got it for a tenner. A mate from school asked me to get him one, so we went down there with my old man. We got a m51, that was pretty ragged off Andy. It was well faded and had a few rips that'd been stitched over with that industrial 'zig-zag/make do and mend' stitching that they do with utility clobber.
    When we got back to my mate's house, his mum hit the bloody roof.
    "Ten bloody quid for this piece of faded and frayed old toot."
    I ended up swapping my m65 with him to shut his old dear up. She was a scatty mare at the best of times and now she was going full-on menstrual at me like I'd pulled a fast one.
    M65s defo don't fade as much, and they're tidier all round. I was never one for patches and adornments to parkas, but the one I was lumbered with was proper scruffy. Considering I done my mate a favour and got him one for a tenner and I ended having to swap my own coat was a kick in the niags.
    I decided to tart the coat up a bit to make up for the faded and frayed at the corners appearance. I bought some black Sgt epaulettes with gold stripes (like the eldest son had on his parka in the OXO ads) and some of that military rope/braid stuff that goes under the epaulettes and under the arm and round. Gawd knows what it's called, but my hero Doug Niedermeyer had it on his RTO uniform in Animal House.
    That coat had the itchiest lining going, it weighed a hundred-weight when wet, and after a while stank like a Barbour jacket. By god it was good for nicking stuff though.
    Anyway, around 1983, I thought it'd be right fancy if I had a white parka. I chucked me coat in a bath full of 10 bottlesworth of Demostos. The end product looked like it'd been attacked by Mothra. It was that bad I could've got an audience with the pope.
    So, as you can imagine, I'm made-up that my £10 coat would now be worth hundreds.
    Long story short, that repro Quad '73 parka shouldn't have a US Army tab on the front.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2015
  4. AngryYoungPoor

    AngryYoungPoor Senior member

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    There was definitely a period after the "tracksuit brigade " caught all of the headlines where the lads were into, almost a "geography teacher" look of lambswool crew necks, hush puppies or dessies, tweed jackets, barbours etc. this would have probably been around 84-87. This is my preferred look as far as that subculture is concerned. Pre clone island (although I was a fan of the Burberry and aquascutum scarves, just not on every bleeding item possible.. Think car seats and the like) it was a clean, hard look much more in line with suedehead than chav. I really think that those "hoolisploitation " movies of the late 90s-early 2000s have a lot to answer for haha!
     
  5. AngryYoungPoor

    AngryYoungPoor Senior member

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    Great minds think a like! [​IMG]

     
  6. Inks

    Inks Senior member

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    Imagine Ronnie Corbett doing his 'big-chair' monologue-joke with a blonde wedge haircut. That's basically 'Smart Casual'
     
  7. Natty Pinstripe

    Natty Pinstripe Senior member

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    In a Pringle sweater I assume ?
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Gramps

    Gramps Senior member

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    I think they may be Trainers as opposed to Bowling Shoes. Pretty sure it was mention earlier on in the thread.
     
  9. AngryYoungPoor

    AngryYoungPoor Senior member

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    I think he preferred Lyle & Scott haha
     
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  10. Inks

    Inks Senior member

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    'Jimmy' trainers. £400 a pair from Pretty Green. (Watch this space)
     
  11. AngryYoungPoor

    AngryYoungPoor Senior member

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    Wow! I have no idea how he justifies his pricing. Do people really pay that kind of money for reissued, re packaged "retro" items?
     
  12. yankmod

    yankmod Senior member

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    Please don't feel insulted if I seem to disparage your culture with generalizations.I'm trying to be succinct as my contributions are not to be taken too seriously.To me Casual was progressive (even if you didn't jump on board) Much of what became Casual later was a return to older models.The Tennis shirt,from Mod to Skin to Soulboy to Perry Boys to Casual.A staple of the most Mainstream kind today.Jeans,Trainers,Synthetic tight fitting Jacket (from the Track suit) I object to the Mass Incorporation of "Casual" It caught on maybe even faster than Mod did,Internationally.There are some modifications today from Casual which I like.
     
  13. AngryYoungPoor

    AngryYoungPoor Senior member

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    No insult taken, I just think that, in retrospect, Casual gets a bad rap. As with anything else though it's a bit more complicated than wearing Fila and having a punch up. It's easily one of the most endearing members of the "Mod family tree" IMHO
     
    1 person likes this.
  14. Soul Vision

    Soul Vision Senior member

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    My issue with casual is that to me it didn't appear to be that different to the 'aspirational' dressing of wearing expensive brand sportswear that you see represented in a way (even) today in pretty mainstream things like 'chav' culture. If you are talking sportswear and the more 'modern' era I think the early hip hop scene was a lot more exciting, fun and (in a kind of garish way) stylish - check out the way the guys below coordinate colors. My disclaimer is I never was one so I am happy to concede I can't really understand it to the degree an 'insider' can...but in the end it is personal preference.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2015
  15. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    I hear you. But the problem I have with that is the 'interruption'. To my mind, an interruption negates a continuation. A continuation is where you can trace something like a seamless hand-over between youth movements, mainly with younger kids copying something their slightly older brothers and sisters were doing. For example, like late mods to skinheads in London (many elements of 'the look' carried on, the same venues were visited...), or mods to Northern soulsters in Manchester and other northern cities (the clubs, the dancing style, the enthusiasm for the musical genre). My impression of Casuals was always that they were doing something relatively new rather than having a scene passed on to them, that they were a scene which revolved totally around clothing, that they were borrowing adult sportswear and an adult look. The only possibly handover might have been some of the smartness of the revivalist mods of the early 80s, but they themselves were similarly dissociated from the generation of 1960s mods due to the same interruption, and were, if anything, an offshoot of punk.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2015
  16. Clouseau

    Clouseau Senior member

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    Reading Roytonboy and MoM recent posts, we can't deny american clothing was a main influence, conscious or not, on the originals.
    But i don't think 2nd wave lads (and the overlapping waves that came after), except maybe a very few 'in the know', were conscious of this influence (well they maybe realized their iconic MA-1 was an USAF garment) .
    I'm not talking of the actual 'traditional' scene who may sometimes tend to intellectualize too much and dress Ivy in a way the originals never did.
    The look" is wordly considered as brit to this day, and we know it comes from a lot of different influences (mod & youth culture, USA, labour, immigrant culture, sports, military...), who finally composed a very recognizable and emblematic look.
    So what about these items/brands that are now considered classic skinhead staple, can you say they are american ?

    Dr Martens
    Monkey Boots
    Ben Sherman & Brutus (OK, american BD copies)
    Knitwear: v-necks, cardigans, shawl collars, tank tops
    Sheepskin
    Crombie
    Football scarves
    Fred Perry polos & knitwear
    John Smedley
    Norwegians
    Mackintosh
    Baracuta
    Lonsdale
    ...
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  17. cerneabbas

    cerneabbas Senior member

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    I think that 'skinhead' in the cropped hair,heavy booted sense could be seen as an interruption in between Mod and Suedehead too.
    I also think that some people my age who were just to young to have been skinheads in the proper sense ( I was 13 in 71),were still around when Casual started in the late 70s,so I wore sta prest brogues etc as a schoolboy and some casual gear in my early twenties.( I don't claim to have been a full on Casual although many around me were)).
    I think that you are wrong in Casual as an off shoot of Punk,in fact I would say it was the antithesis of the punk mentality,surely punk became grunge ?,I don't know as I am not really interested in music or the music scene.
    Yes Casual was about clothing you are right but also about attitude, one Casual wrote something along the lines of 'we want to come your city (for football) and walk thrugh your streets looking better than you,give you a kicking and totally take the piss',something like that anyway and to me that sums up the attitude.
    I have wondered about a crossover between revival Mods and Casuals but I think that's a bit of a myth,revival Mods just wanted to re enact the 60s,nothing new to see really,if you weren't into dressing up like your dad had done,also it seemed to be based around music,gigs,bands etc...quite boring to a lot of people.

    Sorry,I have just reread your post and its revival Mod that you see as an offshoot of punk..that would make sense with the Jam having been associated with the punk bands but not from a clothing style point,TBH I don't know,it wasn't anything that interested me.

    When you mention Casual borrowing an adult look,I see a strong similarity to Suedehead,expensive brogues,crombies,suits,I think that could be due to youths coming of age and wanting to wear the best adult clothes available?,all getting a bit deep for me here though.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  18. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    Well, again, I hear you. But I went from mod to skinhead to suedehead myself without any disruption.

    I didn't say Casual was an offshoot of punk, but that 1980 mod revival was (as a result of The Jam's fashion, and subsequently of 2-Tone). The link between 1980s mod and casual was just a bit of speculation on my part... if casuals were wearing Fred Perry that may have been influenced by the fact that other youngsters were already wearing them. But more probable than that is the fact that kids pick up on what is available, and if something like the Fred Perry tennis shirt is an enduring classic, then from time to time kids will seize on something like that as a 'new' fashion item. I still buy FPs, and I see youngsters in them today, three decades on from casuals, and four decades on from original skins.

    (I see we both edited after the event :) )
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  19. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    Did we wear any other tennis shirts apart from Fred Perry?

    The short answer is yes. Less so in the mainstream skinhead era of late 69, but definitely beforehand. There seemed to be a proviso that if it was not a FP it had to have no logo on the left breast. There were also some long-sleeved casual shirts worn, such as the one below, worn by one of the Deptford 'Smithies'. I had a similar one in navy blue with a white stripe on the collar - I saw a handful the same as mine being worn by other blokes. John Smedley was one band of long-sleeve shirt worn, I believe - it has been mentioned before.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. cerneabbas

    cerneabbas Senior member

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    Yes,sorry I misread your post and I have edited mine.
    Of course some individuals who were the right age would have gone Mod / Skinhead /Suedehead, but in the style itself Skinhead is a bit of an 'interruption'.

    I think that the Mod revival was also due to Quadrephenia ? and that it was separate to 2 tone but honestly I don't know to much about all of that,we were more into other things then.
     

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