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Mod to Suedehead

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

  1. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    We're going to have to agree to disagree on that. There was so much overlap of fashion/music/venues between late Mods and Skinheads in London. Don't forget that late Mods were nicknamed 'skinheads'. The style didn't appear out of nowhere but developed, garment by garment. Also, Suedehead was a gradual morphing from Skinhead, and didn't appear from nowhere either. The first hint I saw was blokes growing their hair and unbuttoning the collars of their Ben Shermans.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
  2. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    It's a bit difficult to unpick the various threads from that era, I agree.
     
  3. cerneabbas

    cerneabbas Senior member

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    I remember in the summer of 1970 that lads here would wear their BD shirts untucked,and I remember thinking 'but they are skinheads how can they wear braces now ?',yes I suppose that you are right nothing just came in,for a start you had to get your wear out of your old stuff.
    Of course as we were kids and growing we could follow some of the fashions as our clothes were replaced,pity the younger brother always a year behind the fashions wearing your old stuff.
    Mind you Christmas 71 was the time I do remember things changing quickly as kids got tank tops and round collared shirts for Christmas presents,they still wore their crombies and Dr Marten boots for quite a while longer though.
     
  4. cerneabbas

    cerneabbas Senior member

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    Agreed,and there was a skinhead element in punk from Sham 69 too,it gets pretty complicated.
     
  5. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    Just like my background - did I ever tell you I was born in 'Bristle'? :D
     
  6. skinny legs

    skinny legs Senior member

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    Smart casual/ 80s Soulboys- one element of the look circa 82 which was akin to the conservative mod look would be 2 button Aquascutum Blazer, tightish narrow leg Fiorrucci jeans, polo shirt plus mock crocks. It's very easy to draw parallels between Mod and Casual but I get the impression that the mindset regarding acting cool was more prevalent with Mod than casual. Me and my mates were narcistic in the extreme but never stopped laughing when we were out and about in the likes of the Lyceum. I don't think we took our selfs quite as seriously as our predecessors 20 years before
     
  7. Soul Vision

    Soul Vision Senior member

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    To make this mod v casual thing even more complicated.

    I have heard there were many battles between mods and casuals (often called 'dressers') in the 80's so for many years they were side by side rather than a progression from one to the other.

    Some were both!

    [​IMG]
    Collier Row Moduals. In 1982, a lot of mods turned into casuals but some of them came back to the fold when we started the Crawdaddy and Sneakers R&B clubs.

    http://www.vice.com/read/big-bob-s-mod-photo-album-530-v17n9
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. skinny legs

    skinny legs Senior member

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  9. covskin

    covskin Senior member

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    For me there was a gestation period between having teenage skinheads around while wearing monkey boots + 'surfer' jackets aged around 8 through hanging around with bootboys aged 12 to being able to pay my way and become a skinhead aged 18. I don't see any discontinuity or break in tradition there.

    I was actually bullied for being a punk aged 13/14 because my hair was too short for the mid-70s and my trousers were not flared enough, having merely heard a cassette tape of the Sex Pistols. Punk was basically a rejection of the early 70s look so by 15/16 I was a mod of sorts in a dogtooth jacket over school uniform shirt and trousers way, then wearing a harrington and into 2 Tone aged 16/17. Was I a punk? No. In hindsight I was a pre-skinhead.

    Casuals were often ex-skinheads, to me casual was a sort of 80s suedehead, it did follow on (even though I didn't). I think the blokes on that Sounds cover (I actually have that cover in my clippings box) look fairly decent, not floppy haired fire-risks.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
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  10. skinny legs

    skinny legs Senior member

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    I don't remember hearing the expression casual till the back end of 82. As far as I could tell we were simply Soulboys. Growing up in surburban SW London, during my older brothers last year at school in 79, there were a good couple of dozen blokes whose uniform consisted of black Farahs, black v neck Pringles- college or kingsway shoes. Digressing a trifle where did inner city London Soulboys knock around in the early 80s. Other than the Lyceum and Old Kent Rd, which had in own little scene, as far as I could tell all the action was on the outside. eg Lacey Lady Ilford, Goldmine Canvey Island, Flicks in Dartford, the Funk Cellars in Epsom, Frenchies over in Camberley and so on. One exception I recall was the Bonne Bonney in Tulse Hill- witnessed a very large Chelsea v Millwall confrontation there in 84
     
  11. Mr Knightley

    Mr Knightley Senior member

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    Quote:I haven't contributed much of late but I have been watching. In 1969 we discovered the delights of American BDs thanks to J Simons shops. One of the first things we noticed about them was the stamp on the tail of the shirt proclaiming 'soil release fabric' or similar. As soon as the sun peeked out in the spring of 1970 we started wearing the shirts outside (not all the time, of course) to reveal this very American wording! By the summer of 1970 we had spotted the Chelsea supporters at Butlins Clacton now wearing slim-fitting French style shirts sometimes worn outside and that shift to 'The French Cut' had begun. Was it an interruption? Not to start with because as MOM says it still incorporated elements of the earlier look - loafers, smooth Royals, mohair trou.
     
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  12. roytonboy

    roytonboy Senior member

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  13. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    I have found a photo of the ballroom in the Blackpool Mecca where we used to go in '68. It was 'Tiffany's', the main ballroom at the Mecca. I'm assuming that this was not the same as the Highland Room, the famous 1970s Northern Soul venue, unless they just renamed it. I'm not going to try to reproduce it here because the copyright is with the Blackpool Gazette, but here is a link to i.

    I can remember sitting at a table on this upper floor, sipping coke and watching the mods downstairs dancing. I used to go onto the floor myself sometimes. The stage was where the resident band would play a short set of soul numbers. As you're looking at the stage, to the left is a small dais/booth where DJ Mick Lee would spin records.
     
  14. Man-of-Mystery

    Man-of-Mystery Senior member

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    Nice to see you! :)
     
  15. roytonboy

    roytonboy Senior member

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    As you correctly infer, not American. To reinforce Covskin's point, some items and styles go round and round - 'Argyle' and 'Shetland' knitwear, Oxford weave, Baracuta/Harrington - originally 'Ivy' or British? - adopted by one because of the other or not? - if so, in which order! Were some of the items worn by Casuals popular because they had originally been worn by or reminiscent of styles worn by mods or skinheads or was that not a consideration? Maybe they looked good and that was reason enough.

    I originally assumed that Ben Sherman shirts were American, but that was not why I bought them. As with everything else - I saw them on other people, liked them and bought them. They also had a particular kudos at the time and drew respect from your peers.I did not know that they were actually from Brighton, nor did I care.
     
  16. roytonboy

    roytonboy Senior member

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    In a sense I agree with you on this, cerneabbas - I didn't consider myself to be a 'mod' between 1969 and 1971 and it is difficult to see a link between say, Gil and Del Evans and much of what I saw worn in 1969 and 1970. There was a move away from that sharp, styled look for many, especially younger, skinheads.

    However - with hindsight (always 20/20 vision!) I can see that in the ever changing look of mod/skinhead/suedehead styles fluctuated between smart, almost 'tailored' styles and more casual clothes at various times. Thus I see photos of mods from 1964 or 1965 in Levis, Parkas and BD shirts and there is little difference between them and what I was wearing in late 1969 and early 1970. As M-o-M is always at pains to stress, the process was evolutionary, hair gradually became shorter (in the Richard Barnes book 'Mods' some of the hairstyles are clearly forerunners of the skinhead), BD shirts changed from plain and candy striped to gingham, then multi checks then to plain deep colours - basically the style was the same (even the brands) just the colouring changed over a period of years. I now appreciate that what I wore and did in that period was just the current incarnation of the mod style or 'culture' and I had little problem switching to a crombie, red socks, long wing brogues and parallel two tone trousers when styles evolved again.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
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  17. Mr Knightley

    Mr Knightley Senior member

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    Thanks chaps!

    Today on these forums the i-gent likes to examine the ins and outs of a duck's arse when it comes to even the most modest accessory! I agree with roytonboy that we only cared about how something looked at the time. If it was associated with a film-star, astronaut, top sports person or some previous fashion movement that was fine but it was not the deciding factor.
     
  18. Clouseau

    Clouseau Senior member

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    That's a personal point of view of course, but i think the only real connection between casual and skinhead is hooliganism. 80s casuals were former skinheads who just wanted to go undetected when they went to the game. Their love of sportswear was not reserved to England, all tifosis, and young people, around Europe loved sportswear brands at the time, BTW it's the time when these brands increased their economic expansion/growth worldwide. But English firms transformed something fashionable at the moment into a sub-subculture.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2015
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  19. Soul Vision

    Soul Vision Senior member

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    Given the tribalism of the 1980's where you had 60's and revival mods, ska, oi and scooter skins, scooter boys, soul boys, casuals, rude boys, etc it's no wonder it it is so difficult to work out how any one group came from another...funny since then any new subcultures have been few and far between!

    Can't remember if this has been on before:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Soul Vision

    Soul Vision Senior member

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    Funny in this doco on casuals they are saying "there was a toughness to the look, 'cause the haircut obscured part of your face"!



    Is this a casual Quad?

    [​IMG]
     

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