Sunday, 14 August 2016

Rags for Riders 1971




Left to Right: American baseball t-shirt, various colourways, from Kleptomania £3.25. American denim jeans, tight n' flared £5.00, from Kleptomania. Yellow and purple woolen two-piece £8.40 from Che Guevara. Detective Luff an Oz Obscenity Trial t-shirt, teamed up with Stirling Cooper canvas trousers, £5.75 from Che Guevara.



                                                             Rags for Riders
Until recently in motorcycling lore, there were only two respectable modes of dress, neither of which had particularly favourable social connotations: The rocker uniform of blue jeans and leather jackets and the ankle length storm coat and baggy rubber oversuits of an earlier generation. Now, as the popularity of biking spreads across a wider social spectrum, such sartorial rigidity is being ignored as more and more riders (and their chicks) opt for jazzier threads that gladden the eye whilst still maintaing reasonable standards of practicality. The firm most responsible for this revolution in motorcycle garb are TT Leathers, who do a healthy mail order business out of Montalbo Road, Barnard Castle, Co. Durham, (they'll happily send you a catalogue). Most of their wide range of designs - some styled on American lines - available in a variety of eleven colours and the suppleness of the leather and the quality of craftsmanship belie their extremely reasonable price. TT also sell through dealers.

TT Leathers recently introduced an oiled cotton trials suit - the Ruffryder - available in red, blue, green and black. Lighter and more flatteringly cut than competitive garments, the Ruffryder adds a welcome dash of colour to the trials scene and a seventy mile motorway dash in driving rain, (August is the monsoon season in England), proved to Bike's editor that they're also damned waterproof! Other firms such as D.Lewis and Rivetts are also waking up to the appeal of flashy riding gear and are including coloured leathers in their ranges. So as it looks as though coloured clobber is here to stay, we've dug out some of the snappier but nevertheless practical outfits from around town and juxtaposed them with examples of the more inspired traditional biking gear.









Left to Right: Green 'Ruffryder' trials suit (jacket £9.95, trousers £6.75). in several colours from TT Leathers. Ex-Firemans' boots, (excellent for trials and scrambles) £2.95 from Lawrence Corner. Soft leather scrambles glovers with protective rubber strips over fingers and knuckles, £2.50 from D. Lewis, 'Wrangler' denim jacket from The Westerner together with wide flare denim jeans from The Emperor of Wyoming. £5.00. 'Honeybunch Kaminsky (jailbait of the month)' an Oz Obscenity Trial t-shirt. £1.50. BSA Victor 250cc trail bike, £309.00 (supplied by Sid Morams of Slough).


Left to Right: 'Bronx' black leather jacket with tons of zips and buckles, £15.75 from D. Lewis (in men's and women's sizes). Heavy pile cotton baseball jacket with quilted lining in several colours, from Paradise Garage. Both ladies are wearing Stirling Cooper canvas trousers from Che Guevara.



Left to Right; Blue denim jacket with brown leather shoulder patches from The Westerner. Yellow jersey jacket, very waisted with wide lapels, £9.95, with matching canvas trousers £5.75, both from Che Guevara. Zipped blue leather racing gloves with chamois leather patches on back to wipe goggles, also in other colours, £3.00 from D.Lewis. Protect 4 helmets in various candy colours, ACU approved for competition use, £5.50 from Stadium.



Outside, Left to Right: Black Stirling Cooper canvas suit with zipper jacket, £19.50 (available in other colours) from Che Guevara. Genuine American overalls in blue denim from Paradise Garage. 








Left to Right: American baseball t-shirt, various colourways, from Kleptomania £3.25. American denim jeans, tight n' flared £5.00, from Kleptomania. Yellow and purple woolen two-piece £8.40 from Che Guevara. Detective Luff an Oz Obscenity Trial t-shirt, teamed up with Stirling Cooper canvas trousers, £5.75 from Che Guevara.



Yellow 'Mach ll' jacket with quilted leather padding on elbows and shoulders, also in others colours, £21.00 from TT Leathers, American denim jeans from Kleptomania, £5.00. Everoak 'Clubmaster MK. ll' low-crown helmet, ACU approved and in various colours, £6.10. Plain black racing gloves, £2.40 from D. Lewis. 750 cc Norton Commando with customised half-fairing, gas tank, racing-style seat rear-set foot-rests and exhaust system supplied by Gus Kuhn (Motors) Ltd.




Left to Right; Secondhand American denim overalls from Paradise Garage. Embroidered cotton shirt (like the country n' western dudes wear), various colours and patterns, from £6.00 at the Emperor of Wyoming. Genuine cowboy boots with hand-stitched patterns down front, various colours, from £13.00 at The Westerner ■ Oz t-shirt, £1.50, Denim flare jeans. £5.00, at Kleptomania. Hessian and leather 'U.S. Mail' shoulder bag from the Westerner, Belts from a selection at Emperor of Wyoming ■ Secondhand American striped boiler suit, with large Esso fabric badge, from a selection at Paradise Garage. Cowboy boots with hand stitching and applique, from The Westerner. (Similar boots are also available at the Emperor of Wyoming from £12.00).





                                                         IMAGE CREDIT & LINKS
All images scanned for the Sweet Jane blog from Bike Issue No. 2 Autumn 1971 with thanks to Brad Jones, Editor Mark Williams, Photographer & models uncredited, but the guy on the chopper is Mickey Solomon and Mark Williams is on the BSA Victor 250cc trail bike.  View one of my previous posts about Biker Fashion here, You'll find examples of other gear from Kleptomania herehere, Discover more about the late great Billy Murphy ''Founder of The Emperor of Wyoming, a Chelsea emporium which sparked a vogue for vintage Americana'' here and also here, the shop was named The Emperor of Wyoming after the opening track on Neil Young’s 1968 debut solo LP, my personal favourite from it here, View rare photographs of Paradise Garage 430 King's Road as it looked in 1971 via Paul Gorman here & it's 70s Workwear Revolution here plus the story behind the shop created by Trevor Myles over on The Wonder Workshop website here, The ‘Schoolkids’ Oz, Mucky Books, and the Downfall of the ‘Dirty Squad’' here, 'I was an Oz Schoolkid'' a personal account about the creation of the infamous Oz issue No.28, by Charles Shaar Murray here, And finally,view documentary footage about the Oz Obscenity Trial Part one  & two.



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