Fashion: What, no safety pins? On the street
Hannah Hunter meets the post-punk punters at an exhibition of vintage Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren clothes
Saturday 21 November 1998
"All my clothes today are from Birkenhead where I go quite regularly to find bargains. I buy mostly second-hand stuff and mix it with clothes given to me by designer friends. This cord around my neck was a freebie from the Beastie Boys own-label show, and my cardigan is from my nan. I don't spend a lot on clothes, and I think it's more creative to find things. This exhibition is fab, it's really exciting to see the early collections from Westwood and McLaren. I've just started to teach at St Martin's and it's really lovely to be paid to help people become more creative."
Stan Smith, (he says), 25 (he says), rock star (he says), from Tooting Bec, London. He wears boots by Red Wing, trousers from Carhartt, jumper from ex-girlfriend, T-shirt by Nike, army parka from a friend.
"This exhibition reminds me of a time in the late Seventies when I was running away from blokes in Westwood-style punk clothes who wore big boots and had bald heads. It's not a positive memory of those days. They were very violent as far as I'm concerned. I am absolutely into fashion, I like individual style and get my clothes from various places. I spend as little money as possible on clothes and buy second-hand or hunt for bargains. These boots were cheap because one was in the window and had faded slightly. There's a really good charity shop in Camden where you can find amazing clothes."
Zoe Griffiths, 24, artist, from Shoreditch, London. She wears boots from a friend, coat from Spitalfields market, very old black jumper, skirt, yellow jumper and skirt, all from Oxfam.
"Oxfam on Kingsland Road, where I get a lot of my clothes, is a treasure chest of jewels. I'm into my own fashion, and hardly ever buy any new things apart from shoes and underwear. I never find clothes to fit me anyway as I'm only 5ft 1in. My paintings are all about people, and a lot are based in Bethnal Green. I do pay a lot of attention to what people wear. I try to capture that first four seconds when you first see a person, and you judge them on appearance alone. Obviously clothes are important in this process. I don't know much about Westwood and McLaren apart from what I've seen on TV with the ultra-high platforms and tartan."
Martin Reid, 26, fashion designer, from north London. He wears shoes from Prada, jeans from Levi's, jacket own design, coat from London Hospice shop.
"I only came down because I heard there was free beer and I went to college with the curator. It's interesting to see the pieces but I can't say I like a lot of them. Westwood is important because there hasn't been anyone else - it might have been a different story if she'd had some competition. I make a lot of my own clothes, and I've been designing for seven years. I'm influenced by film. I love Hitchcock movies. You don't need to be obsessed to make good clothes, there's something a bit nerdy about fashion obsessives."
The exhibition is at the Sho Gallery, London EC2 (0171-729 1590) until 29 November.
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