Archive for the Vintage/reproductions category

Three more early 80s Willie Brown treasures

Front, Willie Brown donkey jacket purchased by Sal Macasil from early 80s London boutique Axiom.

//Leather/wool felt donkey jacket, unlabelled, early 80s.//

Following their contribution of images of treasured clothes acquired from 80s London boutiques Demob and Modern Classics, Salv and Sue Macasil have dug out three more extraordinary garments by the key designer at both shops, Willie (these days Will) Brown.

Front, Willie Brown tweed dress for his Colonial Life label, purchased by Sue Macasil in Brown's early 80s London boutique Modern Classics.

//Tweed dress, Colonial Life, early 80s.//

Front, black Willie Brown dress purchased by Sue Macasil at Brown's early 80s London boutique Modern Classics.

//Cotton dress, Colonial Life, early 80s.//

Among them is a green and yellow donkey jacket bought at Jon Baker’s store Axiom. “It’s not labelled but is clearly a Willie Brown design; in fact I once saw the man himself wearing one,” says Salv.

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Visual feast from Demob + Modern Classics

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Thanks to THE LOOK follower Salv Macasil for sending us this visual feast: images of five key pieces of clothing from the historically important London boutiques Demob and Modern Classics.

In very good condition, the garments convey many stories about the development of the particularly British aesthetic which thrives today at Will Brown’s Old Town Clothing.

Demob’s most popular design was the much emulated plaid-lined, hooded checker-cab strip anorak, notably worn by Paul Weller in the promo clip for The Style Council’s 1984 hit Shout To The Top.

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Westwood asserts rights to Let It Rock + Too Fast To Live

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//Vivienne Westwood (third right) with LIR assistant Addy Isman + Teddy Boys outside 430 King's Road, Chelsea, 1972. Photo: David Parkinson.//

Vivienne Westwood has asserted her rights to the marks Let It Rock, Too Fast To Live Too Young To Die and Worlds End (the names of the shop at 430 King’s Road operated by Westwood and Malcolm McLaren in 1971-72, 1973-74 and 1980 to date respectively).

This is significant. While Worlds End has clearly been Westwood’s since she split with the late McLaren in 1984, they adopted a laissez-faire attitude to enforcing their intellectual property rights to the shop names and dozens of designs created during the 13-year partnership which also included the incarnations of 430 as SEX (1974-76) and Seditionaries (1976-80).

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Lennon + Paradise Garage’s 70s workwear revolution

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//Second right: Lennon; far right: T.Rex manager/stylist Chelita Secunda.//

Over the last couple of years, the recession has inspired the return to popularity of utility clothing. As this cutting shows,  the first British workwear wave occurred in the early 70s when a former Beatle’s penchant for denim coincided with the opening of Paradise Garage at 430 Kings Road.

In London local newspaper the Evening Standard, Janet Street-Porter described how fashionistas and music fans took their cue from John Lennon’s US-flag emblazoned bib & braces and flocked to Trevor Myles’ shop in World’s End for hickory stripe dungarees, Women’s Land Army overalls and second-hand Levi’s.

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Yamamoto’s first UK show + the launch of Paradise Garage

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//From Daily Express, May 14, 1971.//

This photograph of designer Diana Crawshaw from the Daily Express Wiliam Hickey column was taken the day after a momentous event in post-war style; on Wednesday May 12 1971, Kansai Yamamoto showed his new collection at Tom Salter’s Great Gear Trading Company at 85 King’s Road, inaugurating appreciation of Japanese fashion design in the West.

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An out-and-out rarity: Ossie Clark’s python coat

Ossie Clark python coat

Two years after we found a good home for Ossie Clark’s own snakeskin jacket, THE LOOK is pleased to feature another rare garment  made from the snakeskin rolls the designer famously uncovered in a warehouse in 1966.

According to the owner – who is now prepared to part company with it – this is one of only three python coats produced by Clark; one of the others was apparently retained by his business partner Alice Pollock.

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Miu Miu taps the East West aesthetic

Mainstream fashion’s mining of the East West 60s/70s aesthetic continues apace with Miu Miu’s S/S11 collection.

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Baracuta’s “Melrose” chinos

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A Christmas gift I really appreciated from Mrs G was a pair of Baracuta’s “Melrose” chinos. Purchased from John Simons’ new shop, mine are in black, with the tartan lining and all.

A natty touch is the company’s mock-heraldic swing tag in gold, black and red on tan, matched by the spare button envelope.

You can also buy Melrose trousers here.

Fiorucci’s 70s Vargas sticker swing-tag

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As a follow-up to the last post, here’s a 70s Fiorucci swing-tag for an item costing 25,000 lira. The bonus is that the Vargas-type girl on the front is a sticker (stacca attacca – “off attacks” – in Italian).

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The vicuna overcoat – menefreghismo to the max

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Nick Tosches’ Dean Martin biography Dino: Living High In The Dirty Business Of Dreams memorably defines its subject as a menefreghista – “one who simply does not give a fuck”.

And if ever there was a garment which oozes menefreghismo, it is the vicuna overcoat.

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Anna Sui in World’s End Pirate outfit

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In our recent Anna Sui interview, the designer mentioned the acquisition of an entire outfit from Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood’s Worlds End Pirate collection.

This was officially unveiled at McLaren & Westwood’s first catwalk show, at Olympia on March 31 1981, though many elements had been on sale since Worlds End opened at 430 Kings Road the previous autumn, which is when Sui acquired her garments.

And just for THE LOOK, she has dug out a scrapbook with a photo resplendent in the ensemble – including  silk jacket, “squiggle” top and scarf – at a Hallowe’en party held by actor Nicolas Cage.

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John Simons’ new shop

John Simons new shop, Chiltern Street, London W1.

Final preparations are being made to John Simons’ new shop at 46 Chiltern Street, in the simpa area of London’s West End wedged between Baker Street and Marylebone High Street.

The sign has yet to be erected and there are many finishing touches to be made but already the space is shaping up to present a unique offer. “I’m juxtaposing the clothes with my abiding interests in art and design over many years,” says Simons.

As explored in THE LOOK, Simons is the nonpareil purveyor of the finest US menswear brands, in particular those associated with Ivy League and the 50s/60s modernist movement in clothes.

Simons has long been at the forefront of the field, with such rich associations as Cecil Gee in the 50s, The Ivy Shop in the 60s and 70s and J.Simons in Covent Garden for more than two decades up until February this year.

John Simons at his new shop in Chiltern Street, London W1.

John Simons, Chiltern Street, London W1, November 30, 2010.

INSIDE JOHN SIMONS’ NEW STORE: “A MODERNIST’S DREAM”

[This was originally posted on December 7,2010]

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John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

Tomorrow see the opening of John Simons’ smart new retail outlet at 46 Chiltern Street, London W1.

These photographs were taken last week; much progress has been made since, but they should provide a flavour of the environment Simons and his team – including son Paul – are creating.

Formerly the site of a print shop, the premises have been transformed into a modernist’s dream, decorated with art, insignia, branding, furniture and design classics, some of which serve as fittings, such as the Penguin Donkey which will be used to display socks.

John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

As noted, the locale is perfect for Simons, whose outlet is in the company of such stores as Grey Flannel, Archer Adams and Mario’s barbershop.

John Simons new store, Chiltern Street London W1.

We wish Simons and his crew all the best in this new venture which returns this key figure to London’s style scene; next stop, apparently, is the online shop which follows soon.

John Simons' new store, 46 Chiltern Street, London W1.

Mr Freedom originals from Tommy Roberts’ archive

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Original clothing from Mr Freedom – the boutique operated by Tommy Roberts and Trevor Myles from 430 King’s Road in 1969-70 and then by Roberts in Kensington Church Street in 1970-71 – is now much sought-after.

These four items – including a roll of screen-printed fabric – are from Roberts’ own archive and are for sale. All are in excellent condition. Please direct all inquiries to thelook@rockpopfashion.com.

Designed by Diana Crawshaw, the front-tied “baseball suit” was one of Mr Freedom’s most famous creations, worn by many a pop star and celebrity.

Mr Freedom baseball jacket

Mr Freedom baseball jacket

Mr Freedom baseball jacket

Mr Freedom baseball jacket

Mr Freedom baseball jacket

This jacket is a contemporary size 10; the 14 label reflects how sizing has changed in the last 40 years.  Like the jacket, the matching trousers are also size 10 and are made from cotton velvet from Mr Freedom’s supplier in Lyons.

The trousers came in three-quarter and full-length. These are the flares with an inch-and-a-half turn up and two labels – an interior one in the style of a Tom Wesselman nude with a sun-ray version stitched into the waistband at the back.

Mr Freedom trousers

Mr Freedom trousers label

Mr Freedom trousers + details

The unisex Western-style shirt is a typically exuberant example of Mr Freedom’s playful approach to pop archetypes, in contrasting mauve/scarlet with snap fastener buttons. This fits a 38in chest and has a 15-and-a-half neck size.

Mr Freedom shirt

Mr Freedom shirt

Mr Freedom shirt

Mr Freedom shirt

The printed crepe was used for a handful of shirts and, Roberts recalls, one dress. It was designed by Jane Wealleans, a member of the store’s design team along with her then-husband Jon Wealleans, who was responsible for the interior of the second Mr Freedom outlet.

The American football player motif draws inspiration from the William Klein film which gave the store its name. There are five metres of this, the only roll in existence.

Mr Freedom fabric

Mr Freedom fabric

Mr Freedom fabric

Mr Freedom fabric

Interested parties should contact THE LOOK here.

Up for grabs: original 50s black leather motorcycle jacket

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THE LOOK has been granted first look at this rock fashion classic: a 50s black leather motorcycle jacket which is being put up for sale by the owner, who purchased it from a thrift store on The Bowery in 1975.

The jacket is in remarkable condition considering that it has been on the road and around the world in the last three-and-a-half decades.

It was also worn for its purpose; the owner ran a Harley for a number of years.

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Adorned with Harley Davidson and American Motorcycle Association patches, this is a Sears Roebuck AllState, with black quilted lining and lined, zippered pockets complete with original black suede pulls. There is also a metal-poppered flap pocket.

The belt is retained with a screw in the back panel. Details include epaulettes with star-shaped studs, shoulder vents and zips on each sleeve cuff.

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For further details and inquiries, contact THE LOOK at thelook@rockpopfashion.com.

***NOTE: Following interest in this from our readers the vendor has opted for this to be listed for sale on eBaY. You can find the listing here. Best of luck.***

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LaRocka!’s pink leather Wild Child jacket

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Memories of Emma Ridley come flooding back with the current listing of a LaRocka! pink leather”Wild Child” biker jacket on eBay.

LaRocka Wild Child

Demonised as the embodiment of indulged and out-of-control 80s youth, Ridley’s turn in the media spotlight was brief.

These days, it seems she runs a pole dancing school in LA.

LaRocka Wild Child

LaRocka Wild Child - back

View the “Wild Child” jacket on eBay here.