60s mod movement

We're having a party this week on the blog, celebrating dance eras through the decades. We've talked 70's Disco and 90's Rave.... today it's the turn of the swingin' 60's!

The Mod movement is seen by some as one of the most powerful fashion influences in the 21st Century. For the first time, girls were dressing like young women, instead of wearing more petite versions of what they Mother's wore.

The word 'Mod' was an abbreviation for Modernist, which emerged during the 50's and usually referred to Jazz fans. There was a wild Bohemian culture in London at the time, with Beatnik coffee houses entertaining art students until the small hours of the morning.

60s go go boots
vintage go go boots // shop

Young people wanted to be on the cutting edge of fashion. They started to embrace anything that went against the tradition of their parents and the sweet, pure popiness of the 50's. Mini skirts, thigh high boots, streamline clothing and bold colours.

green mod mini dress

60s mod dress // shop

Famous designers of the Mod era included Mary Quant for the girls (the mini skirt) and Ben Sherman for the boys.

Suddenly, it was acceptable for heterosexual men to take an interest in fashion and boy, did they love anything Italian and French. The Kinks even wrote their hit 'Dedicated Follower of Fashion' about the Mod movement.

mod monochrome purse/>
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<div style= mod 60's bag // shop

Women often had short haircuts, wore heavy eyeliner and pale lips. Jean Shrimpton and Twiggy were huge style influences of the time.

Both boys and girls would listen to bands like The Who, Yardbirds and Small Faces, alongside modern Jazz and early RnB. Whilst The Beatles looked Mod in their early days, they weren't popular with the Mod crowd until it after the look became commercialised. 

green 60s micro dress

bright 60's micro dress // shop

Scooters became popular because public transport stopped around 11pm and young Mods wanted to stay out later. Italian brands like Vespa and Lambretta were like 1960's iPhones!

Swanky dance moves included The Swim (think Pulp Fiction), The Locomotion, The Mashed Potato, The Twist and The Shimmy. It was no longer about learning steps with a partner, but more about learning brief, faddish routines with friends.

blue square mod earrings

geometric mod earrings // shop

Go Go Dancers were coined during the 60's, when women were employed to dance on podiums, usually in long boots, and entertain the crowds. Carol Doda was the most famous 1960's Go Go Dancer; dancing at the Condor Club in the Beatnik North Beach neighbourhood of San Francisco. It's pretty rare to see Go Go Dancers in clubs now, unless you go to a gay bar, where the tradition lives on!

monochrome mod scarf
monochrome scarf // shop

During the early to mid 60's, true Mod was at its peak. After 1966, Mod started to become commercialised, with 'Mod' clothing being mass produced by large companies. 

Like many youth-led movements, such as the Flapper Girls of the 20's, the followers grew up, got married, had children and made way for a new generation of style and music. Psychedelia and rock started to take over and the original Mod bands began to change their style as, they too, grew older. 

green 60s coat

60s pea coat // shop

In the UK, Mod experienced a revival in the 90's with the Britpop scene, through bands such as Pulp and Blur. Though the original Mod movement may be over, it's really not difficult to see why the sharp lines and futuristic silhouettes of the time are still sought-after today!

And ok, let's admit it... we've all done The Swim or The Twist on a night out... haven't we?

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