Today I have been researching subcultures to see if there are specific ones or just one that could directly relate to my chain of thinking. I have been investigating the history of the subculture throughout the 20th century, and also how, before they came to be thought of as ‘subcultures’, un-mainstream dress developed and influenced later subcultures, such as the ‘dandy’ and the rational dress movement.
One culture I find particularly interesting is that of the ‘teddy’ girls in post second world war Britain. It is one of the lesser-known sub-cultures in comparison to the ‘teddy boys’, the male counterpart, however I find the girls more interesting as during the 1950’s extremely feminine fashions were in mainstream fashion so therefore by rejecting these and donning male suits they were truly rejecting social expectations at the time. This also links in well with the suit theme I have been exploring, as they bought second-hand c1900 men’s suits and paired them with contrasting clothing as part of a reaction either for or against the trend that upper-class suit manufacturers were trying to instate, that of a return to the pre first world war gentleman’s suit.
I think that it is interesting that a subculture requires two contrasting cultures, something to react against, so I need to consider what exactly it is in the modern world that I am reacting against in the project. I think it is good to research lots of different avenues, thought I need to eventually narrow it down to what I really want to look into and streamline it. I think part of the problem with the last project was that I had too many chaotic ideas so I need to figure out exactly what part of what I am researching interests me.
The idea of contextualisation interests me, as this is exactly what the subcultures did, taking garments that represent something else and then mashing them up with garments from a completely different time or perspective, so one way I could explore this is through collage, cutting up different garments or objects and placing them alongside each other to try and create something new.
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