1.20.2011

Make me a Teddy Girl

Quite sometime ago I found a set of vintage photographs online that inspired me more than anything else had seen in quite sometime. I immediately dragged them from the screen and safely into an inspiration folder on my desktop where they sat. and sat. and sat. and sat. And now, finally, today is the day that I get to set them free!

They were of Teddy Girls in the mid 1950's (see the two smaller photos below), and I remember being so captivated with their effortless Edwardian-era styling and their tough, tomboy attitudes. In the time since, I've done a wee bit of research on Teddy Girls, enough to know that I would have been A-okay with being one if I had been around in the 50s.  They spent their spare time away from factories buying or making their trademark clothes which included – get this – drape jackets, pencil skirts, long plaits (aka braids!), rolled-up jeans, flat shoes, tailored jackets with velvet collars, straw boater hats, cameo brooches, espadrilles, coolie hats and long, elegant clutch bags (taken from wikipedia!). I mean, other than the coolie hat, which of those things would you not want to wear right now?

It was only recently that I rekindled my love and appreciation for Teddy Girls, and I owe it all to Liz Ham's 2010 interpretation for Oyster Magazine. More than anything they make me ready for spring and maybe a little anxious for a pair of shiny black oxfords!
1955 photos shot by Ken Russel!

31 comments:

Michelle said...

They're so effortlessly cool! I especially love the last photo, that jeans and t-strap flats combo with a stripey top is so great.

vintageveggie said...

i've had that first photo in my inspiration folder for ages too. they are so effortless and cool. i want to be just like them!

Milly said...

I love them all, tempted to get my hair cut into that short style, but don't think I'd ever actually go for it.

LOVE the post, brilliant idea.

am following you.

Would love you to enter my giveaway:


http://thoroughlymodernmilly5.blogspot.com/2011/01/giveaway-be-my-february-girl.html

xx

Victoria / Justice Pirate said...

I remember Erin made an entry about Teddy Girls over the summer or whenever that was and I too love them. I wouldn't consider that first fashion photo to be very Teddy Girls but the last one they did a great job and I love how they styled themselves. I read a large interview about the original Teddy girls and they are amazing. I want to see the movie that was filmed with them in it.

katieafox said...

ahhhh one of my fave styles! Think these girls led the way in tomboy dressing and paved the way for skinhead and mod girls. Love! x

Merle said...

lovely blog!

http://www.schnuersenkelrolltreppentod.blogspot.com

amanda said...

oh these are soooooo cool!! thanks so much for sharing :)

Tanglewood Baked Goods said...

Wow. This is exactly the style that I covet. Thanks so much for sharing!

Melanie's Randomness said...

What rebels for the time! I think they look pretty awesome! Great photos! =)

Melanie's Randomness

The Drifter and the Gypsy said...

Wow! That first photo is gorgeous! At first I thought the title said 'Make Me a Teddy Bear' and I was trying to find the reference to teddy bears haha. I've never heard of teddy girls, but I shall do some more research about them!

Babes in Thriftland said...

Wow thanks for sharing, I love this! I had no idea that teddy girls existed. Like you said, this a style that would totally translate to today without feeling dated. I can't wait to use a little bit of inspiration from these in my own life!

Penny Dreadful said...

I've seen these pics before, they are great aren't they. I'd love to be able to pull off this style myself.

the girl in the bowler hat said...

Thank you for sharing these pictures, I've somehow never seen them before but they totally are my cup of tea! I love how they pull off such looks ever so effortlessly.

xxxx

nicole said...

Ahh, they are timeless! Great post. xo.

Rachel said...

Absolutely love their look. :D

Emily, Ruby Slipper Journeys said...

The models look cool but the real girls are the best! And I'm joining you in shiny black oxford love... and also shiny black t-straps!

Jason Lieder said...

These pics are great, I can def see why you'd put them in you inspiration folder. Really cool look. That will for sure be great this fall. Thanks for posting.

Hazel said...

nice inspiration you got there!! thanks for sharing these!! :)

<3 hazel
http://thethriftycloset.tumblr.com

taylorkitto said...

these girls are awesome.
the last picture is my favorite.

Rebecca said...

Love these. What cool girls.

laa said...

Love this look. wish I could be brave enough to pull off the hair. xx

http://itsnotfuntobeyellow.blogspot.com/

Carys said...

Thanks so much for sharing these, I've been a rather massive teddy girl obsessive for quite a while now, I just love these!! I really admire their bravery, it was a much bigger deal to dress so out of the ordinary in the 50s than it is now.
From Carys of La Ville Inconnue

Classy Chassy said...

If you had told me those pictures were taken yesterday, I would have believed you. Amazing!

xo, Ashley

Frances said...

I never get tired of those Ken Russel images - I love the way the girls look just as cool now as they must have done back then. It's a great combination of the gorgeous, feminine hair and the masculine tailoring, pulled off with mountains of attitude!

Mamushka Marie said...

effortless and awesome - boy do i want her hair!!

Shy, Chesterfield said...

These are really cool! I'm going to have to look into these Teddy Girls! Great post!

Shy

Arielle said...

count me in!
I never realized this before but I think my style compares the most with teddy girls

Mitzi Cocoa said...

I want to be a teddygirl! They are so beautiful and tough!

A Certain Vintage said...

wow these are great!! thanks for sharing x

Colleen said...

this is so cool!

mandi c said...

I love the last one of them on the boat! What amazing women. Thanks for sharing this!