Mother Wouldn’t Like It

Mother Wouldn't Like It

Have just formed a new organisation. It’s called SPOCC or the Society for the Protection of Clothes Customers. Idea came last night when I collected a couple of suits from the cleaners, only to find that the shoulder padding of one jacket was lost somewhere down the sleeve, and the trousers, supposed to be drip dry, were wrinkled like a Dutch dyke. The first suit came from Carnaby Street, the second from the Kings Road. Jose, my flat-mate, tried to pacify me by saying, “I thought you said clothes now are fashionable and short-lived. So what do you expect?” Simply that a suit shouldn’t disappear at the first clean! I accept built-in obsolescence and all those rubbishy excuses for using cheap materials, but I expect a suit to last a year, not a month. How about you? Let me know what you think … it might add up to some interesting revelations. Like the super trousers in the sketch. They’re Newman jeans from France; they cost much more than English or American but, in my view, are twice as good. I got a pair from the Heavy Metal Kids in the Kensington Market for £5. Elsewhere you can pay up to 8 gns. Shirts are another racket. The shirt here looks as if it costs 10 gns., and so it can at some places. In fact, it’s made by a man called Bryan King, who works in a Queensway attic, turning out great shirts handmade, frilled, tapered, for £2—£4, and sells them at his stall, Mother Wouldn’t Like It, also in the Ken Market. The tie-makers have become so ridiculously expensive that ties are out except for the odd occasion, and these shirts are as logical a take-over as the polo sweater. If Bryan can turn them out at this price, why can’t others? Remember—next time you think you’ve been rooked, let Luke SPOCC Jarvis know.

Written by Luke Jarvis.

Illustration by Wendy Buttrose.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Honey, March 1968.

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Contemporary Wardrobe by Sheila Rock

Ramona Mo-Dette by Sheila Rock

1959: Ramona/Bright Young Thing. Influences: Vogue, Irving Penn, High Society, Barbara Golan, Paris couture. Ivory plant pot hat; ivory silk abstract rose print dress; ivory leather handbag; ivory leather fake lizard stilettos; tortoise-shell cigarette holder; white make-up and vivid red lipstick. To be seen around town, having tea at Fortnum & Mason or the Savoy.

“Contemporary Wardrobe, run by Roger Burton from a warehouse at London Bridge, fit up the stars of small and big screen. They specialise in clothes from 1945 to the present day, supplying outfits and accessories to customers in movies, TV, video, commercials, theatres and advertising agencies,, with some private hiring for parties, posing and…well, that’s their business. The clothes in Quadrophenia came from Contemporary Wardrobe; others have been on hire to Not The Nine O’Clock News, Minder, The Professionals, Dreams of Leaving, The Kenny Everett Video Show, The History Man, Shoestring and Mackenzie. Thy have also kitted out Freeez, Secret Affair, M, Wings and Judas Priest for Top of the Fops and promotional videos, and clothed the sleeves of Motorhead, Girlschool, Marianne Faithfull and Yellow Magic Orchestra. Most other huge collection is authentic, as are all the clothes and the majority of accessories in these photos commissioned, clothed, posted and photographed specially for The Face by Sheila Rock. CW also offer a research department to assist styling and offer technical advice an an express service to reproduce garment or outfits or specific projects. Couldn’t they do something about Doyle’s jackets an Bodie’s flairs [sic]?”

Before there was vintage, there were just old clothes! Superb shoot by Sheila Rock for The Face, June 1981.

John Cooper Clarke by Sheila Rock

1967: John Cooper Clarke/Regency Beau. Influences: elegance, Beau Brummel, Brian Jones, Town Magazine, LSD. Claret velvet suit hand-tailored; pink frilly shirt by John Stephen; patent spat boots by Bally; paisley cravat, crucifix ,cameo, birds foot brooch, jet beads ,silver top cane ,gloves, white make-up, mascara and back combed hair all essential to create the Look for promenading Carnaby Street and Portobello Road to acquire the odd fairground horse or exotic sign from Trad Alices or Lord Kitchener’s Valet. Photo taken at Trad Antiques in Portobello Road

Ranking Roger by Sheila Rock

1950: Ranking Roger/Zoot. Influences: Charlie Parker, the Zou-Zou movement in France, Puerto Rican chic, Wyatt Earp. Grey bird’s eye double breasted Zoot suit; eau-de-nil impressed cotton shirt; brown velour homburg; slim red bow tie; white buckskin brogues by Lillywhites; silver watch chain, silver key chin. Characters wearing this look could be seen around smoky jazz clubs and pool halls all through the ’40s and early ’50s in Harlem. Now adapted by the Chicanos in South America, who rive around in Low Rider cars of the period.


Guy Day: Colin Firth, 1984

Crushed white silk shirt Katharine Hamnett. Silk toga as flag Katharine Hamnett. Navy herringbone trousers at Demob. Ghillie shoes at Scotch House

Crushed white silk shirt Katharine Hamnett. Silk toga as flag Katharine Hamnett. Navy herringbone trousers at Demob. Ghillie shoes at Scotch House

A young Colin Firth in a white shirt? You’re welcome…

Styled by Hamish Bowles. Photographed by Robert Erdman.

Scanned by Miss Peelpants from The Face, October 1984

Black wool coat by Body Map. Red cotton jersey shirt by Tim Hall at Demob. Black fur pile shapka by Dexter Wong at Post, Hyper Hyper. Badges from Covent Garden and Berwick Street Markets.

Black wool coat by Body Map. Red cotton jersey shirt by Tim Hall at Demob. Black fur pile shapka by Dexter Wong at Post, Hyper Hyper. Badges from Covent Garden and Berwick Street Markets.


Guy Day: Bring your man up to date

Look at him. God's gift to women.

“Look at him. God’s gift to women.

But before you start chucking him back, remember the average British male is all you’ve got to work on. So get working on him. Tell him you think his barber stinks. Say you’ll scream if he turns up in that seedy safari jacket, with those baggy drainpipes, and bunion-hugging shoes again. Meantime, wear this pale blue hooded coat £45, matching poloneck with red chevron front £21, and matching trousers £28. All by Sonia Rykiel at Browns.”

This is a quite-frankly-amazing little photo story from Vanity Fair, which sees our Cinderfella hero being taken from baggy drainpipes to novelty-print-shirted Hard Rock Cafe God, via the Kensington Church Street branch of Mr Freedom and Leonard of Mayfair.

Photographed by Marc Leonard. Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Vanity Fair, January 1972

Once he's started growing his hair,

“Once he’s started growing his hair,

…swap the chat for action. Shove him into Mr. Freedom, 2- Kensington Church Street, W8. Strip off his drainpipes and fit him into a pair of red velvet jeans, £7.75. Rip off his jacket and zip him into a red-and-white satin top, £7.95. (It’s got FAR OUT splashed over the shoulders to make sure he gets the message). And while you’re there, buy yourself some pale blue satin trousers, £5.25, a furry acrylic leopard-skin blouse, £9.95, and a black pom-pom beret, £4.”

This is when the sow's ear really turns into a silk purse.

“This is when the sow’s ear really turns into a silk purse.

He’s at Leonard, 6 Upper Grosvenor Street, W1 (even if you had to frog march him there), being tactfully handled by Peter. Wash, cut and blow-dry costs £3.75, beard 5-p. extra – not much when you consider it’s made a mean-moody-magnificent out of that surly yobo of yours.”

Doesn't he look lovely?

“Doesn’t he look lovely?

Sitting in the Hard Rock Cafe in his grey wool barathea Stirling Cooper suit, £28.00 with a waistcoat, and his tiny-man-patterned shirt, £4.90. Both from Way-In, Hans Crescent, SW1. You’re in your Missoni four-piece (orangey battledress top, matching trousers, orange silky blouse and toning striped tank top). £75 from Browns. Thinking what a perfect couple you make. Except that now he’s thinking: ‘Blimey mate, you could do a lot better than her if you tried.'”


Inspirational Editorials: Mode a Venise

Lui: Jacket by Harry Lans from Printemps Brummell. Shirt and tie by Francesco Smalto. Trousers by Brummell. Elle: Dress by Ossie Clark. Silver fox fur by Robert Beaulieu.

Lui: Jacket by Harry Lans. Shirt and tie by Francesco Smalto. Trousers by Brummell. Elle: Dress by Ossie Clark. Silver fox fur by Robert Beaulieu.

“Pour ceux que le triste smoking ennuie, << Lui >> propose une mode du soir facile à porter. Certains vont mourir à Venise, << Lui >> a décidé pour un soir d’y vivre en beauté.”

Un éditorial parfait, from Lui, January 1972. Photographer sadly uncredited.

Lui: Jacket, shirt, tie and trousers by Elysees Soieries. Patent black boots by Charles Jourdan. Elle: Panne velvet outfit (tunic, trousers and scarf) by Tan Giudicelli. White fox fur by Robert Beaulieu.

Lui: Jacket, shirt, tie and trousers by Elysees Soieries. Patent black boots by Charles Jourdan. Elle: Panne velvet outfit (tunic, trousers and scarf) by Tan Giudicelli. White fox fur by Robert Beaulieu.

Lui: Sweater by Francesco Smalto. Shirt by Elysees Soieries. Satin neck tie by Elysees Soieries. Elle: Dress by Vesscheringe Brard. White fox fur by Robert Beaulieu.

Lui: Sweater by Francesco Smalto. Shirt by Elysees Soieries. Satin neck tie by Elysees Soieries. Elle: Dress by Vesscheringe Brard. White fox fur by Robert Beaulieu.

Lui: Outfit by Renoma. Elle: Dress and midnight blue fox fur by Tan Giudicelli.

Lui: Outfit by Renoma. Elle: Dress and midnight blue fox fur by Tan Giudicelli.


Mensday: Stay Snug

petticoat snug nov 71 john carter

Photographed by John Carter. Scanned by Miss Peelpants from Petticoat, November 1971.

From left to right: She wears a curly fake fur short jacket by Elgee. Suede bib gauchos by 3 AM. Boots from Sacha. Canvas hat from Paradise Garage. He wears a leather flying jacket from Badges and Equipment. McCaul’s pullover. Pants from Take 6. Ravel lace-ups. 

She wears: Suede jacket with furry trim by Hidegrade. Waistcoat by Take Six. Plus fours by Gordon King. Crochet hat from Biba. Watch from Paradise Garage. Boots from Russell and Bromley. He wears a suede hooded coat from C&A. John Craig polo jumper. Check pants from Bus Stop. Lace-up boots from Ravel.


Guy Day: The New Cue Shop

cue shop
Uncredited but it looks like an Antonio to me. Scanned from Harpers and Queen, November 1979.