Men were not always fashion conscious in the contemporary world, at least not to the extent we are seeing today. It was the mod fashion subculture that marked the beginning of men’s exploration into fashion, at least as far as the United Kingdom is concerned. The mod fashion is linked mostly to the 1960s and yet its roots took hold in the 50s when young men and women decided to branch out on their own rather than wear their parent’s tried and tested threads. Mod stood for modernist and was generally accentuated by bright and colourful fashions. The mod subculture was established not by fashion leaders but teenagers who took control and were responsible for the styles that would later influence the entire country and even The Beatles.
Mod Fashion Influence
The history of mod fashion has left ripples and echoes throughout fashion to this day, including the punk, new wave and Britpop fashion movements. Today we may still see a hipster or two sporting characteristics of mod fashion; Tumblr or Pinterest even have categories devoted to this movement. So it’s safe to say that the mod fashion movement complete with designers and celebrities, has made exceptional impressions that aren’t perhaps immediately apparently to us but that exist beneath the surface of contemporary fashion.
Characteristics of the Mod Subculture
The movement of mod fashion, for men at least, was all about being sharp dressers with suits mixing it up as casual clothing. Influenced by Italian fashion and pop culture, the mod fashion movement was described at the time as being hedonistic, tailored and slightly androgynous but it was these qualities that gave it the strong impression it needed to claim its ground. The mod subculture was often closely linked to the nightlife of London, with the genre of music preferred being refined jazz at first and then eventually moving to more Rhythm and Blues inspired rock.
Mod Fashions Second Wind
Today, we’re seeing throwbacks to the mod fashion area become more apparent; shops specialising in vintage 60s clothing are not uncommon and the television series Mad Men has gone a long way to bring the suit back into the limelight. Depending on the city you live in, you may even be able to catch glimpses of an old staple to the mod fashion style; a Vespa scooter. For mod fashion, the scooter was a fashion accessory as well as the preferred mode of transport and today in congested cities like London and Cape Town it is also practical. Mod fashion is perhaps even on its way out for the second time, but for the meantime let’s all enjoy the style and sophistication of this measured rebellious style movement just one more time.
Eugene Calvini is a passionate fashion commentator and writer who is just as comfortable in a men’s silk blouse as a pair of Hawaiian shorts; he enjoys sharing his perspective on contemporary fashion topics.