Ask the 1950s Style ex-Teddy Boy

Our music was Rock n’ Roll…I mean was there any other kind other man?. Pat Boone singing some shmaltzy love song or Debbie Reynolds warbling on about “Tammy” just wasn’t our thing.

For a night out we had loads of youth clubs that seemed to spring up overnight when some enterprising bugger realised that we had money to spend, not a lot I admit, but we had some and they wanted it. There was also the cinema altho’ the flicks were not our fave places.

And coffee bars where you could buy a cup of brown stuff with bubbles on it for a ridiculous sum of dosh

Mostly we cruised for girls, sometimes we got lucky :smiley: sometimes we got told to piss off :frowning:

Drainpipe jeans? they weren’t jeans my good man, they were proper suit trousers. No Ted worth his salt would be seen dead in jeans.

Beetle crusher shoes were as shown in the link posted by Savannah.

Available in any colour you wanted, they had thick crepe or foam rubber soles which had no instep, they just ran the whole length of the shoe and we usually wore shoelaces that contrasted vividly with the shoe. I had lime green laces and pink shoes.

Didn’t think much of mods or rockers and as far as I can remember skinheads hadn’t put in appearance.
As I said, rockers rode motorcycles and mods rode scooters…they usually met up at some seaside resort and proceeded to kick shit out of each other for no apparent reason. This I just read about, never actually witnessed it.

The cave with the drawings was excavated in the late 70’s and I believe various artifacts were unearthed…one of which is being guarded by top men, I said TOP MEN

Why was that style called Teddy Boy?

Chowder, you’ve given me a bit of cultural knowledge I didn’t have before; thanks! I bet you looked cool. (Did you think of yourself as cool? Did you guys even use the word “cool”?)

God knows, the late 1950s needed some color and variety. And for most of America, the '50s just hung on well into the '60s, like dead skin that wouldn’t fall off. On behalf of bored kids in the U.S., thank you for the British Invasion.

Oh Og forgive me because this is probably going to sound awful, but would Austin Powers be considered a Teddy Boy?

And now that’s out of the way, I’ve got to say that all this sounds wonderful. I’m into more of the scruffy type myself, but I could certainly see being charmed by the likes of you then. Pink and lime green! :smiley:

We were named Teddy Boys because the style we adopted was supposed to reflect that of the Edwardian era. Personally I think that altho’ in some respects it did, namely the drape jacket, in the main it was just us being rebels against a really dull fashion world.

Cool, indeed we we thought of ourselves as cool, also groovy,hip, and with it. Anyone else was so square they had corners that needed sanding.

Austin Powers one of us? you must be kidding. I tell you anyone dressed like him would be a candidate for a funny farm.

Frilled shirts, velvet coats and those shoes, c’mon man he is soooo out of it

I suppose I should tell you a little about the cost of being a Ted.

My first suit, 3 piece, cost me £27 and it was bespoke.

Shoes as far as I recall were around £3 which was a hellava lot to pay. The colours I think were simply fast dyed on, least the colours never ran but then again we tried not to get any of our gear wet. As I said we took great pride in appearance

Shirts were usual prices unless you wanted coloured ones, then the buggers tacked on another 10/-

Sock were fairly cheap but they tended to be so thin you could spit through them, consequently you wore holes in them quite quickly.

Ties, these on a pound for pound basis, were possibly the dearest item of wear. A decent tie could cost you more than your bloody shoes.

Fake handerchiefs came in packs of 3, various colours and design, cost about 2/6 a pack

It wsn’t cheap being a Ted and in actual fact we probably also kept Brylcreem solvent given the amount we used. One trick was to wet your hair then apply Brylcreem. It set like a rock

Almost forgot. I lost my virginity as a Ted and like to think it was the lure of the “uniform” that did it.

Her name was Alice, bless her, and she wanted to lie on my jacket while we did it :eek:

Are you mad? get jizz on my jacket and possibly other precious bodily fluids? chance.

Here you go, I’ve found a nice mound of leaves, now get yer knickers off, I’ll have to be quick 'cos I’m meeting my mates in 15 minutes.

Yep, that’s me, romantic to the last, I never saw her again and couldn’t figure out why she stood me up

Have you always lived in the North?

Did you ever see the Beatles play before they got famous?

So, chowdy boy, how was she? Eh? Eh? How was she?

Do you wish that this subculture still existed?

(I do)

To answer the last three questions.

I’ve always lived in the North West of Merrie England apart from a 1 month miserable stay in Brussels, a training course which an old boss of mine insisted I go on.

I never saw the Beatles but I did get to meet Cliff Richard when he played in Manchester, he shook my hand which I never washed for 2 weeks :slight_smile:

How was she? Hard to say really it being my first time and all. Three thrusts and that was it…sperrrrlattt, over.
I do remember she had on a paper nylon underskirt that rustled like thunder, I’m certain people could hear my energetic efforts from at least a couple of hundred yards away.
She had big tits though :smiley:

In some ways I guess I do wish it was still with us but only because I find the way kids dress today to be terribly scruffy. I’ve seen better dressed bag ladies than some of the oiks around here

So anyway I’m getting ready to go out one night, just putting the finishing touches to my barnet.

Dad appears.

“You going out like that?”
“You look a pillock”
“Really, Dad take a look at yourself, grey trousers, dark jacket, grey shirt, grey socks and a bloody pullover”
“Hmmmm, enjoy yourself son”
“Cheers dad, you to”

Exit son, grinning having made his point

I had never heard of Teddy Boys until today, and my dreary Wednesday is much brighter for it. Thanks, chowder!

Yeah, I saw some kids walking down the street the other day wearing some giant baggy clothing in hideous patterns, and thought, “There’s really nothing missing from those outfits but a red rubber clown nose.”

And in her new book * The lost art of keeping secrets* Eva Rice mentions a teddy boy in chapter 1. It’s all new to me!

Who were the girlfriends of the teddy boys, teddy goils??

what did TB’s say for “cool” or “fabulous” ?

My dad tells me that the Teds’ weapon of choice was a bicycle chain.

I know you said you weren’t hooligans, but did you ever see anyone wielding such a thing? Did anyone ever threaten you at all?

chela Our girlfriends were indeed Teddy Girls but quite obviously their style of dress was different from ours altho’ it did reflect part of the Teds style insofar as colour was concerned

Girls normally wore flat shoes and multicoloured socks, white blouse, flared skirt of any colour they wanted,paper nylon underskirt (see above) hair in a pony tail with coloured bands (scrunchies?)

For “Cool” we said “cool” for "Fabulous we said nothing. Groovy, hip, with it, are just a few expletives we used.

jjimm You have it right there my friend. Among other niceties some Teds actually sewed razor blades into the lapels of their coats in case some other bugger grabbed them intending a Glasgow kiss.

I was never threatened at all and nor were any of our “gang”. We stayed away from the places the knobheads used to hang out. Not that we were cowards, just sensible

Thanks for the education. Always happy to learn something new.

Before I forget:

We had proper rock stars back then…Jerry Lee Lewis (The Killer) Duane Eddy, Fats Domino, Little Richard to name just a few immortals.

Todays so called rockers are shit compared to the guys we had…John Fogerty being a possible exception

What’s a Glasgow kiss? A punch in the face?