Thursday, March 7, 2013

Inspiration: Teddy Girls


“We weren’t bad girls. We were all right. We got slung out of the picture house for jiving up the aisles once, but we never broke the law. We weren’t drinkers. We’d go to milk bars, have a peach melba and nod to the music, but you weren’t allowed to dance. It was just showing off: ‘Look at us!’ We called the police ‘the bluebottles’ – you’d see them come round in a Black Maria to catch people playing dice on the corner. But we’d just sit on each other’s doorsteps and play music.” - Rose Shine (Teddy Girl)






Teddy girls (also known as Judies) wore drape jackets, pencil skirts, hobble skirts, long plaits, rolled-up jeans, flat shoes, tailored jackets with velvet collars, straw boater hats, cameo brooches, espadrilles, coolie hats and long, elegant clutch bags. Later they adopted the American fashions of toreador pants, voluminouscircle skirts, and hair in ponytails.
Their choice of clothes wasn’t only for aesthetic effect: these girls were collectively rejecting post-war austerity. They were young working-class women, often from Irish immigrant families who had settled in the poorer districts of London — Walthamstow, Poplar and North Kensington. They would typically leave school at the age of 14 or 15, and work in factories or offices. Teddy Girls spent much of their free time buying or making their trademark clothes. It was a head-turning, fastidious style from the fashion houses, which had launched haute-couture clothing lines recalling the Edwardian era.










In the 70s, and again in the 80s, rockabilly music and a resurgence of Teddy Boy styles was fueled by the likes of Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren, who added a little more glam rock to the look. Ted revivalists continue to pay homage to the original trappings of the 1950s style, in some cases driving 1950s cars, wearing only 1950s clothes, and stockpiling 50s-era collectibles.

I find the Teddy Girl style beyond cool! I love the confident statement that the women that wore it were making. Austere but alluring and appealing, plus charisma factor. 
Every once in a while, I find myself incorporating and mixing some elements of the Teddy Girl style – studded leather jacket, cat-eyed eyeliner and sunglasses, red lips, houndstooth, tweed, Edwardian hairdo's, wingtips, flamboyant dandy blouses and other classic yet badass styling.

The Teddy Girls of 1950’s London sported Gibson Girl hair and rolled up jeans borrowed from the boys, balancing the look with feminine details like boater hats, ruffled blouses, and bad attitudes and manners - they were not exactly society-friendly, apparently so.
What I love about those ladies is their rough, raw, fearless sense of style. They had a brave concept of aesthetics that I admire passionately. They didn't give a shit about trends, they did their own thing and that is what made them so effortlessly kick-ass!
British subculture and fashion style always steals inspiration from bygone styles - for instance, worn by dandies in the Edwardian period after World War II. So if you want to experience this sort of style, bring on the leather jackets, pencil skirts, rolled-up jeans, flat shoes, tailored jackets with velvet collars, boater hats, creepers (the only item I really don't like at all), cameo brooches... and a ponytail is always welcome! This was all about jazz, rock and roll, and being young and rebel. It would have last longer, but after that, it was time for Mods to take place.


Get the Look: Teddy Girl




Sleeveless top, €20 / Club Monaco , €105 / Soaked in Luxury boyfriend blazer / Skinny jeans, €98 / Reiss knee length pencil skirt, €125 / Yves Saint laurent, €450 / Repetto ballet flat shoes, €210 / Oversized clutch, €46 / Antiquities Couture cameo brooch, €96 / Wooden Ships fur scarve, €46 / Lauren Ralph Lauren , €23 / Lip gloss, €16 / Stila waterproof eyeliner, €17 / Fresco Towels Union Jack Vintage Flag Beach Towel In White, €115 / MR. BATHING APE x REGAL Shoes "BAPE STA Wingtip"

22 comments:

  1. How interesting! I've never heard of Teddy Girls before, they were like post war punk kids! how cool! Love the outfit inspired by them you've put together :)
    xoxo Amie @ Spoonful of Vintage

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    1. I couldn't describe them that accurately! Thank you, Amie :)xx

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  2. These photos are so great! I love the style in all of them!

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  3. I usually don't like the 50s aesthetic very much [maybe because I can't stand the strict gender roles and oppression that defined the era], but I think the Teddy Girls are an exception. The hair, lips, blazers, and pants look so great together! Plus their rebellious attitude is difficult to dislike.

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    1. Every decade has its magic and different sub-cultures and that's what makes me fascinated. Teddy Girls were just so cool!

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  4. Interessei-me pela cultura Teddy - na verdade muito diferente do seu counterpart norte americano dos rockabillies que eu AMO - após ter visto duas vezes de enfiada filme Absolute Beginners. Aliás, se não o viste aconselho-to vivamente, acho que vais gostar mesmo sendo a história fracota. A Patsy Kensit está 5 estrelas em termos de look eheh. E apesar de achar o cool das Teddy Girls muito convidativo, em mim persiste o bichinho da rockabilly girl, I'm not that tough after all eheh. Ah, conheces o video do Loyd Cole "Jennifer she said"? Também tem por lá uns piscares de olho ás Teddies.
    http://fashionfauxpas-mintjulep.blogspot.pt/

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    1. Já tive uma crush pela Patsy Kensit, de facto, mas nunca vi o Absolute Beginners, talvez porque perco a paciência com alguns musicais, mas vou visionar esse, já que o mencionas. Também gosto do lado rockabilly da década, claro, embora me pareça, nos dias de hoje, mais "batido", falado, massificado. Claro que isso não lhe retira o valor!
      E ADORO LOYD COLE AND THE COMMOTIONS - mas nunca tinha visto o video desta música, bah.

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  5. Não conhecia esta cultura/estilo, mas achei muito interessante! E adoro a confiança e atitude que as mulheres têm!

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    1. Também admiro a atitude, e valorizo o facto da maioria das raparigas serem provenientes da classe operária. O estilo parece um cruzamento entre um dandy punk e um aristocrata. versão milady.

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  6. This is definitely one of my favourte posts devoted to Teddy Girls of all time. Though their look is not one, by and large, that I've felt overly compelled to emulate (looks that veer towards the masculine side and I rarely partner up together, though I very much admire them on other lasses), I am fascinated by these stylish yesteryear rule benders and their bold, beautiful, expressive fashions.

    ♥ Jessica

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    1. I am so glad you like this post, Jessica! :) What a nice comment! x

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  7. Great post! I love the teddy boys/girls style, you really got some amazing photos!

    www.laurensibs.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thank you, I felt like I should post about teddy girls because love it or hate it, they were beyond cool.

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  8. I just read about the on another blog so I'm definitely inspired by this fashion now, it seems to be everywhere now

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