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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If only it had stayed as good as it started...
I'm giving this book 4 stars although I felt it faded badly once he got to university but the first few chapters about a working-class bloke and the mod/skinhead/soulboy continuum are worth 4 stars alone they're that good. As you'd expect from a smart working class geezer the attention to detail is amazing but as is so often the case once the writer starts to hobnob with...
Published on 23 Jan. 2012 by Young Goblin

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21 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Journey through one man's self-obsession
Dont bother unless you are a member of the authors family or a close personal friend and therefore likely to be mentioned with glowing approval. Elms incessant self-regard, self-obsession and chippy 'working class' elitism becomes wearying very quickly. The focus rapidly shifts from clothes (the reason I bought the book) to the authors claims to have instigated several...
Published on 19 May 2006 by R. Dawson


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If only it had stayed as good as it started..., 23 Jan. 2012
By 
Young Goblin (Bradford, Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Way We Wore: A Life In Threads (Hardcover)
I'm giving this book 4 stars although I felt it faded badly once he got to university but the first few chapters about a working-class bloke and the mod/skinhead/soulboy continuum are worth 4 stars alone they're that good. As you'd expect from a smart working class geezer the attention to detail is amazing but as is so often the case once the writer starts to hobnob with the stars everything tales off.And this is written by an ex-New Romantic!
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More than just a trawl through the wardrobe of a clothes obsessive, 26 Aug. 2006
By 
I am not particularly fussed about clothes but thoroughly enjoyed Robert Elms's touching and wonderfully written autobiography. Clothes - and Elms's obsession with them - are lovingly chronicled in some detail. With each new subculture, or trend, came a new look or variation on a current look. Mods to skins to suedeheads to soul boys to punks etc etc. If you lived through this era and have any interest then you should enjoy this book. I must say I found it thoroughly absorbing but then I was an early punk and participated in the Billys/Blitz scene where Robert Elms played a starring role. One of the reviews on the back of the book makes a comparison with Nick Hornby's 'Fever Pitch', I think that's spot on. Just as you don't need to be a fan of Arsenal FC to enjoy Hornby's book so you don't have to be a clothes horse to enjoy this book. Well done Mr Elms, I doff my retro-velvet Stevie Wonder-style hat in your direction.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What we wore and listened to, 4 May 2006
By 
Andy Edwards "staxasoul" (Essex UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Way We Wore: A Life In Threads (Hardcover)
Clothes as a metaphor for the times we live in - this is not the first time it's been done, but here Elms does it well and accurately, and if you can remember those times.

Elms was one of those kids many would have wanted to be - at the centre of things, but he has some nice self deprecating tales to tell while beautifully linking Clothes, politics, music and growing up

if your interests extend to the way you look (ed) then this is an excellent read. Those who are not will find it all very superficial no doubt - I loved it
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15 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended reading, 21 Feb. 2006
By 
Mr. P. Bailey "Mod Meets Mayfair" (Coventry United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Way We Wore: A Life In Threads (Hardcover)
THIS book goes way beyond merely talking about youth fashions: I found it to be a fascinating read, a social history written in the first person from a man who became clothes obsessed from an early age. Semi-biographicall the author talks about his background, his family and how youth culture, and always being seen in the right clothes gave young English kids a creative direction. Something that was uniquely their own. It coves three decades of innovation and ends with the sad truth, that, the latest must have thing is no longer dictated by the kids themselves. Like the Mods and Skinheads of the 60's or the Soul boys of the 70's but by the high street and music industry.
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5.0 out of 5 stars It All Came Flooding Back, 22 Dec. 2014
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I didn't realize how much I cared about clothes until I read this book. It was like a stroll down memory lane. Some of the long lost memories, did we really think donkey jackets were a good look?, made me laugh out loud! A fantastic read, thanks Robert.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book brought back so many memories of things and ..., 18 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: The Way We Wore: A Life In Threads (Hardcover)
Great book brought back so many memories of things and places I had forgotten . Would
have been even better with a few photos.
P's I have just seen that Solatio are now remaking box top loafers in the next few months.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Baggy trousers, 20 May 2008
By 
J. Travers (Florianopolis, Brazil) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Evocutive and accurate description of the periods 60's to 80's in London. Would suggest you may find the books subject mater too esoteric if you are not (a) Male (b) Over 40 (c) From London (d) Not familiar with Robert Elm's lapses into vanity.
Otherwise a brilliant reminder of a period where clothes, music and youth added up to more than just skillful marketing for the next Pepsi Cola ad.
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21 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Journey through one man's self-obsession, 19 May 2006
By 
R. Dawson "piehead2" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Dont bother unless you are a member of the authors family or a close personal friend and therefore likely to be mentioned with glowing approval. Elms incessant self-regard, self-obsession and chippy 'working class' elitism becomes wearying very quickly. The focus rapidly shifts from clothes (the reason I bought the book) to the authors claims to have instigated several major youth movements and thereafter been at the very epicentre of every major cultural movement ever since. Those he cant lay claim to are quickly dismissed as irrelevant, copycat or misguided. This includes any cult, movement or trend originating outside of London and especially in the North of England.

He devotes an entire chapter to the making of his suit paid for with royalites from this book. Put quite simply, this is DULL and irrelevant. Next he will be adding appendices describing his visit to the dry cleaners (well it involves clothes does'nt it?).

If you have every heard Robert Elms radio show be warned, this book is like having to endure day's of the same voice and opinions without respite from the news and weather or phone interviews with 'chirpy' taxi drivers.

What this book has done is made it abundantly clear that Elms regards most music and most people as entirely secondary to himself and his clothes and attempts to establish his (in his own mind) rightful place in fashion and music history.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 19 Sept. 2014
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A great book on clothes
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Burnt Oak calling, 29 Aug. 2008
By 
P. M. Flaherty (North London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is a must read for any male over 40 years of age who grew up in London.
I am biased as, like Elms, I grew up in Burnt Oak and his account of "Little Moscow" is spot on!
A poor suburb of North London, yet in the late 60s and early to mid 70s the High Street was lined with clothes and record shops, with more than its fair share of barbers/hairdressers - all the working class teenagers had to do was spend their hard earnt money on looking good and playing the right tunes aswell as religiously attending the terraces (of Highbury in particular).
It did epitamise the youth sub-culture of the era that was quintessentially British!
For anyone who wants to have their memory woken to the generation of the 3-day week and life before the technological revolution this is the place to start.
Many reviews compare 'The Way We Wore' to 'Fever Pitch' and it is certainly in the same category but I think TWWW is better (I'll show my hand - I'm a Chelsea fan .... Elms supports QPR for his sins).
Other reviews have critised the lengthy description of having a suit made to measure. I personally think this is compelling reading and made me want to go straight out and buy a suit! Just like Ian McEwan decription of a squash match in 'Saturday' - I've got a great respect for any author who can make an every day event seem fascinating.
Many are also critical of the left wing views that are a thread through the story, but this was the age of popular Labour governments and Union power until it all went pear-shaped in the Winter of discontent!
Elms is entirely accurate - despite the skinhead right-wing movement most working class kids inherited left-wing thoughts from their parents .... that is until we all became Thatcher's boys some years later.
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The Way We Wore: A Life In Threads
The Way We Wore: A Life In Threads by Robert Elms (Hardcover - 15 April 2005)
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