British Style Genius: Part 3

In Britain the fashion is seen as radical and rebellious. Those responsible for this description are designers Vivienne Westwood John Galliano and Alexander McQueen.

Vivienne Westwood

Vivienne Westwood, Whats in your wardrobe 2011

Westwood introduced the punk style in the 1970s and her goal was to break the rules.

She worked alongside Malcolm McLaren and they opened SEX on Kings Road.

Sex Boutique

 They made controversial clothing and on the streets people were arrested for wearing provocative t-shirts.

One of the most successful items was a pair of pants with a strap between the legs

Bondage Pants Metropolitsn Museum 2003



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

British Style Genius: Part 2

A Cut Above: The tailored look

British style is religion in Japan and Paul Smith is the God. He is the most successful British designer in Japan

Paul Smith has taken a colourful playful approach towards tailored suits. He uses bright prints both inside and outside of suits along with the British flag and flowers.

Paul Smith suit 2010

Savile Row

The most famous street in London providing tailored garments was founded by Henry Poole. Tailored suits are exported worldwide.

The word ‘Savile’ means 3 piece suit in the Oxford dictionary. ‘The suit is the potent symbol of authority’.

Tailoring has been a tradition in London for many centuries

In the 1930-40s when the Golden Age of film existed Hollywood stars were drawn to Savile Row.

Fred Astaire 2011

Fred Astaire was a Hollywood entertainer who wore Savile Row tailored suits while dancing.


Until the 1960s tailored suits were worn by all working class.

Burton tailoring bought tailoring garments to the mass market.

All fabrics were woven in Britain for improved quality and remain to true British style.


Roger Moore as 007, The Art of Manliness 2008

James Bond was and still is a symbol of being well-dressed and elegant. The look was originally created on Conduit Street.

Michael Caine was another actor whose costumes were often tailored suits.

Michael Caine 2012

Douglas Hayward designed the suits for Michael Caine in Alfie and the Italian Job (1969).

Douglas Hayward and Michael Caine, The Telegraph 2010


The process

Savile Row suits go through a long process. It is necessary for the designer to get the customers ‘blueprint’ which, includes the measurements, customers interests etc.

  • the fabric is cut by hand
  • several fittings
  • minimum of 8 weeks to produce

    The Japane Times Online by Paul McInnes 2011


In the 1980s european designers such as Giorgio Armani designed suits to become more relaxed than structured. Theremoved the dhoulder pads and left the jacket to fit loosely.

Giorgio Armani suit 2012

In the 1990s designers like Ozwald Boateng, Richard James and Timothy Edwards made tailoring ‘cool’. Suits became slimmer with slanted pockets which elongated the body.

Ozwald Boateng, The Telegraph 2011

Ozwald Boateng

Richard James suit The Telegraph 2010

Mannequin fitting Japan Times 2011

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

British Style Genius Part 1

The video explores looks and trends which define British style from catwalk to high street.

In the UK the majority of fashion is purchased on the high street and high-end fashion is inspired to the elite.

The biggest provided of high street fashion is Topshop which belongs to the Arcadia Group. They remain one of the most successful in this fast paced environment because they provide looks straight from the catwalk but at affordable prices.

Collaborations with high fashion designers and models have increased their success, knowing what the public want and responding to it.

The Topshop Loves Kate Moss collections proved to be successful because she was a high profile model whom many young people aspired to be in both life and style.

Kate moss posing in Topshop for collection launch,

  • The launch of the collection saw Kate Moss posing as a mannequinn in the window of Topshops flagship store on Oxford Street. Many fans gathered outside to get a glimpse of the model.

Though Topshop leads the way it was originally Mary Quant in the 60s who inspired the idea of ‘teenage-wear’. Then it was non-existent and she used the then rare PVC in her designs. 2009


Ozzie Clark 2008

” …not interested in the cost of a garment but how it makes the wearer feel”- Ossie Clark

Ossie the ‘master cutter’ a succesful designer of the 60s he collaborated with Celia Birtwell who was a print designer. His catwalks consisted of loud music and dancing models.

Ossie Clark and Celia Birtwell 2008



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2000s Gaza and Gully

Gaza and Gully refer to the two biggest music groups in Jamaica. The areas refer to the neighbourhoods of Adidja ‘Vybz Kartel’ Palmer (Gaza) and David ‘Mavado’ Brooks (Gully).

Gaza side Vybz Kartel, Fiweh 2011

Gully God Mavado, Jahkno 2012

Both are the most popular DJs of dancehall music and their own rivalry has sparked violence in Jamaica and is also apparent worldwide where mainly Jamaicans reside. The rivalry has been likened to that of the political parties Jamaica Labour Party (JNP) and Peoples National Party (PNP).

Mavado and Vybz at The Sting 2009

The Sting Clash that started the rivalry

The divide between the two caused other musicians to select sides which eventually led to segmenting of the society and influencing young people to follow.

Elephant Man of the Gully side, The Grio 2012

Gaza Slim, Tumblr 2012

The idea of following either the Gaza or Gully sides came about due to the fact that many young people do not have any social institutions in their communties and therefore, are left to develop their identities. With no direct influential figures they look to musicians.

“All human beings have a need to belong. The poorer you are and the scarcer the resources (such as social development centres) is the more competitive and combative the war is,”-Dr Herbert Gayle, The Sunday Gleaner 2009

“There is nothing to gain physically, or nobody gets paid to be a ‘Gaza’ or ‘Gully’ even worse than politics”- Dr H.Gayle 2009

Gaza refers to the Palestinian city and has been a volatile area for many years and it is likened to the violence in parts of Jamaica.

Gully refers to the trenchtowns in Jamaica ridden with poverty and crime.

Gully Side, Flickr

Both Mavado and Vybz have spoken about the rivalry and are adamant that its a ‘lyrical thing and that the bigger picture of the problem relates to the government and its lack of fundings for young people.

“we’re powerful as musicians, because we speak for the people, them (the authorities) try to put everything on us.”- Mavado, The Gleaner 2009


Their is no definitive style that relates to this subculture, however tattoos, army wear, baggy pants and Clarks shoes are usually noted.

Vybz's tattoos, Dancehall USA

Army wear, Chanel 2010

Clarks are the number choice of shoe for Jamaicans


Musician Elephant Man created a song and dance Gully Creepa

Mavado Last Night/Gully Side

Vybz Kartel Gaza Commandement 2009

“music leaves an indelible impact on its listeners that affects them emotionally and psychologically, which can influence their actions”- Dr Leahcim Semaj 2009

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

2000s Floggers

A sub-culture which emerged in Argentina in the 21st century. It developed from Glam rock and a mixture of other trends.

It is based upon a the new idea of social networking which people set up photo blogs and post pictures of themselves and friends on Fotolog.

Argentina holds 5.5 million users, one of the largest nations to use the site.

The social netwotk site

Buenos Aires, the capital city has 4,460,296 registered users alone. The city has a population of 13.9 million people.

‘Flogging’ has become a quick rise to stardom for users. The more comments made, the more popular the ‘flogger’ becomes.

14 year old Marco Emiliano Colom, The Guardian 2009

All my friends want to be famous or on TV. I think that’s one of the appeals of photo logging, it gives people the chance to be recognised. Young people in Argentina are seriously into celebrity”- Marco Emiliano Colom, The Guardian

Augustina Vivero, the most poular flogger in Argentina

Bright hair, Augustina Vivero, Fotolog

Floggers such as Marco and Augustina have been gifted modelling contracts and been hosts at nightclubs despite their young ages (floggers are around 12-18 years).

Floggers are generally from a middle to upper class background as only they can afford to have computers at home and buy branded clothing frequently.

In recent years Floggers have become more socially aware due to the increase on attacks against Floggers.


Fluorescent colours,

Asymmetric hair cuts

Skinny, candy coloured pants, Culturas Urbanas

  • tight, candy-coloured pants (men and women)
  • hoodies
  • V-neck t-shirts
  • canvas/ skate sneakers
  • over-sized sunglasses


Electronic, House

Floggers dancing on Talento Argentino 2009

While living in Argentina I did notice that the majority of people are accustomed to the wanting the life of a celebrity. The media focuses on everything that is fake and perceived as ‘beautiful’.

Though it appears Argentineans are living in a bubble, it may have been pushed upon them by the media leading to their own self promotion through sites such as

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

1990s Junglist

A term which was developed in ‘Jungle’ West Kingston, Jamaica which emerged from the Rude boy and Gangsta sub-cultures.

Bob Marley Concrete Jungle (1973) which spoke about the troubles of living in West Kingston.

The ‘Jungle’ homed junglist who were against the law and it was a culture which travelled to the UK in the 1990s amongst the many Jamaicans living there.

In the UK the ‘junglist’ sub-culture took off with a rise in MC’s whose music in the form of drum and bass was an alternatice to acid house.


On first meeting with a ‘junglist’ there is was no distinctive style associated with the sub-culture. It would ahve been a case of hearing their choice of music or allowing them to MC.

Junglist would smoke cannabis and graffiti.

Ali G In da House 2002

Film Ali G: In Da House portrayed the ‘apparent’ image of junglists.


Jungle music was primarily played on pirate radio stations but eventually slipped into mainstrem.

General Levy Incredible was the most played ‘junglist’ track and he popularised the word ‘boyaka’, which in Jamaica generally signifies the sound of a gun shot.

General Levy, BBC

UK Apache & Shy FX Original nuttah

UK Apache

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

1990s Teeny Boppers

A sub-culture which was mainly associated with girls who fantasied of many situations such as marriage with particular idols.

Screaming fans, D.Lee 2012

It intially started in the 1960s when the musicians, bands, TV personalities became popular and continued througout the decades.

My first encounter with a ‘teeny bopper’ was in the 90s when I discovered my sister had a ‘love’ for the boyband of the moment..New Kids On The Block.Often she would listen to their music, wear t-shirts, bracelets and any other merchandise she could get her hands on. She also had her own favourite member, Joey.

New Kids On The Block (NKOTB) Step By Step 1990

Boybands generally consisted of 3 to 5 good looking boys, some could sing others not so much. Yet they were adored by millions of screaming teenage girls whic each had their favourite. If another girl they knew tried to claim the ‘one’ they liked it could have ended in a verbal or physical war!

Moving into my teenage years and maybe NOT having the best example set by my older siblings (my other sister loved New Edition in th 80s!!), I turned to the Backstreet Boys for my ‘teeny bopping’ era despite earlier being a ‘tomboy’.

Backstreet Boys, Fan Pop

I listened to their musical continuously, knew the words of every song more than my actual studies and went to every concert. However, I was ‘FORCED’ into this subculture…there was no escape.

N'Sync, Take 40

At the same time as the Backstreet Boys, another group N’Sync existed and the two were always compared to one another and at most times in competition with each other thanks to the media, eg. BSB signed to Coca Cola, N’Sync to Pepsi. This competiton also existed between me and all my classmates in the same position –

Me: ” Backstreet sing and dance better”

Classmate:  ” No N’Sync are soooo much better”

Of course like everyone else I had my favourite, the cute blonde one, Nick Carter who everybody else like but in my mind he was mine and belonged to nobody else. I even cut my hair like his… much as I know you are dying to see pictures Joe, I dont have any… As I keep telling myself!

To my mothers dismay my bedroom was covered in posters. At one point there was not a space on the walls neither the ceiling, if there was there was sure to be some magazine on sell with a poster inside.

My room was just like this, Teenie Boppers

After months of annoying my mother I persuaded her to let me paint a shrine of the Backstreet Boys on my wall. Eventually she agreed, as I was using my talents and the last remaining brain cells I had. The painting stayed on my wall for years but was painted over as the group disappeared and I grew out of my adolescence.

Other artists

Britney Spears

Chrisitna Aguilera


NKOTB Right Stuff 1988, Hangin’ Tough 1989

Backstreet Boys Get Down 1996

N’Sync Tearin’ Up My Heart 1998

Oh and I do remember standing in a queue for 5 hours to meet the men of my dreams! and when I did I cried and was consoled by Nick my future husband!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment