B-Boys on the streets of London in the 80's, All Over Press.
The top 10 most stylish subcultures
The street has always been the epicentre of the most modern trends. We count down the stylish subcultures putting us through our fashion paces.
Drawing on the history of the European dandy, Les Sapeurs of Central Africa dress up in elegant suits, pocket squares and prints in the brightest hues. These gentlemen take style seriously, creating a fashionable and worldly identity for themselves in fine tailoring, which originated in response to government bans on Western dress in the postcolonial 1970s.
During the turbulent 1960s, America’s flower children celebrated peace and free love across the country. Nowadays, the hippie represents tie-dye, bell bottoms, patterned mini dresses and all the best things about the summer of love.
With links to the 1980s NYC hip-hop scene, B-boy culture is concerned with looking fly. That means a dress code of sportswear, matching tracksuits, and the most unusual accessories: breakdancing needs a unique look as much as physical finesse.
Paving the way for today’s cool, Britain’s mods spent the 1960s working on a sophisticated kind of style: think polo necks, miniskirts and Twiggy-lookalikes, on the back of Italian Vespas.
Coming out of London nightclubs and Adam Ant videos, the New Romantics embraced a mash-up of styles to achieve the most glam look – combining vintage velvet with frilly pirate flourishes and lots of lace for maximum theatrics.
It’s the beloved subculture of the fashion crowd – Punk Britannia, from Vivienne Westwood on the King’s Road in the 1970s. Leather jackets, spikes and studs added up to a devil-may-care outlook that has outlived its decade.
Lately, a little goth has slipped onto the red carpet, through stars like Dita Von Teese but the true goth is a child of the 1980s, clad in black with Victorian or medieval accents. Its influence shows on the runways from the likes of Riccardo Tisci and Olivier Theyskens.
At the centre of Tokyo’s kawaii district, Harajuku kids try to out-do each other with some out-there looks. Many different styles abound, but these pink numbers show Harajuku at its girly, cutesy best.
These days, it might be synonymous with teenagers in baggy tees and backwards caps, but in its early days, skateboarding meant all the best of Californian fashion: flared blue jeans and clean-cut tees an absolute must.
It’s been the dominant subculture in the past 10 years, and it’s sticking around. The hipster male uniform – a variation on facial hair, a decent hat, denim and a fixed-gear bike – is the global template for current cool.