The 1960s Mod Fashion

It is true that what we wear has always defined us to some degree. It is something that can indicate economic status but within certain confines of convention. Uniformity of dress historically creates a standardized population. During the 1960s, as part of the social change movement of fashion, a subculture called Mod was introduced. It started in Britain and spread around the world in changing degrees and many different countries. 

The mod culture was focused on the fashion and music that was around during that time. It was an innovative, creative, bold, and brash fashion style that came from the stylish and quirk young ends of London. If you want to learn more about the mod fashion of the 1960s, read on as we’re giving you more information about it. 

What is Mod Style?

The mod fashion in the 1960s was a time of innovative, creative, and bold outfits that mirrored individuals amid society. The impetuous outfits were once a descriptive element that created a person’s appearance, and it belonged to London, England. During these times, the ‘60s Brits set the tone for this fashion change while the rest of the world observed and immediately started to follow. For the mod subculture, what people would wear has defined them to some degree, and as well as showed economic status around the world. 

During this period, the motto “anything goes” was huge. People also reflected the shifting politics of the day, and it was the attitude of “do your own thing” which applied to fashion, making the era a predominantly important and historical one. 

The mod style started on the streets of Britain and not in the comfort of people’s homes. It came to the revolution of fashion the youth-oriented and driven. It is where the baby boomers were coming of age. During that time, they were born post-World War II, beginning in 1964.

In the 1960s, when the first clothing boutique opened, it was referred to as “the happening” place to shop and get clothes from. People found it more comfortable to purchase their clothes from here. It was popularly known, and no other place was more famous for swinging boutiques than those found in the streets of London, such as in Kings Road and Carnaby Street. But aside from London, Paraphernalia also opened in 1965, and it was located on Madison Avenue in New York. 

The color was one of mod culture’s huge and massive roless in the fashion industry, defining the ‘60s look. Clothes back in those times were bright and bold and were usually arranged in a geometric pattern. But why is it called mod? Well, it’s because mod stands for modern, which in its purest use meant minimalist. Questionably, there is nothing minimal about most mod fashion, but that is the origin of the name. 

What are the 3 Key Mod Looks?

If you want to recreate the 1960s mod fashion, here are three key looks that you should know about:

Mid-Century Knitwear

To reference some mod flair in a contemporary look today, wearing a knitted polo may just be the best and most stylish way. When this look is accomplished with a sharp pattern or stripe, it heeds back to the early mods of the late 1950s and early 1960s. You can pair it with some tailored suit pants and some light-colored socks to get a versatile outfit that you can wear for work or play. You also have the option to dress it up with a blazer. 

Off-Duty Classic

A Harrington jacket is also an essential piece of clothing for the mod style. It is an effortlessly cool piece and is quintessentially mod. The best colors are navy or stone, but you can also choose other colors and fabrics, like suede and corduroy. 

You can definitely wear almost anything with a Harrington. But for the best mod style, a button-down oxford shirt, indigo selvage denim jeans, and Clarks Desert boots are perfect. You need to keep the jeans slim, tuck in the shirt, and roll the hems of the denim to show off your boots. 

Modern Tailoring

When you think of classic mod style, you will most likely picture tailoring. However, it is quite challenging to get right. The usual mod suit features a three-button front, slim lapels, and fairly structured shoulders. Today, you can turn to something more lightly structured, with two buttons and a bit wider lapels. You can wear boots in black leather and make sure that your pants are hemmed high to make their sleek silhouette shine. For your shirt, you can try a tab collar for a sharper look. 

Popular Mod Fashion Designers

Here are some of the top fashion designers back in the 1960s for mod style:

Mary Quant

Back in the 1960s, Mary Quant entered into an agreement with J.C. Penney to create four collections each year, and she made mod fashions affordable and available to the people in the United States. In addition to that, she was also responsible for hot pants and the baby doll or Lolita look.

Pierre Cardin

Pierre Cardin was popular for his space-age style, hoop dresses, collarless jackets for men, and asymmetrical styles. When he put his attention to the average buyer with a ready-to-wear line and then to the branding of household items, many believed that he sold out. He was a pioneer whose merchandising brain was copied by all those who criticized him before. 

Paco Rabanne

You won’t be able to tell the story of 1960s mod fashion without mentioning Paco Rabanne. He was defined as the bad boy of the French fashion designers. He used unconventional materials like paper, metal, and plastic to make his Metal Couture and bizarre and colorful designs.


All the beautiful gowns and suits that were worn by Audrey Hepburn were probably the most noteworthy to come out of the French Design house during the 1960s mod fashion era. She became the virtual ambassador of Givenchy. In fact, the little black dress was coined when she wore a Givenchy dress in the 1961 blockbuster hit, Breakfast at Tiffany’s. 


The mod fashion and subculture have indeed influenced the social change in fashion during the 1960s. It gave people the energy to wear bright clothing and feel comfortable wearing them. It allowed people to experience and experiment the social change not just in society but in fashion, as well. We hope this helped you learn more about 1960s mod fashion. If you’d like to learn more about 1960s fashion, check out our list of Interesting Facts About the Iconic 1960s Fashion Scene