Hardy Amis was right. What every Mod instinctively knows. Image is identity.
One of the reasons I became a Mod back in the antiquity of 1966 was the realization that girls liked well dressed young men. The sharper, smarter and the more stylish your appearance the better your pulling power. Coco Chanel had a point. Even though I'd never come across her words, instinctively I knew this to be true.
This still holds true even as I near my seventies. Of course, being married for forty-one years I haven't dressed to 'pull' for decades. Now it's about positive self-image. As a young Sixties Mod it was also a reflected aspiration, of wanting more from life than our parents or the older generation had achieved. Many of us did not come from well off backgrounds. The majority of young Mods were working class. Back then a meme like this one, as quoted by Louis Raphael, would have been given high approval..
If you've seen the movie Quadrophenia, you will most likely remember this court room scene in the movie. Here are two clips that make the point.
It was game playing bravado to impress, The reality was of course somewhat different...
Turned out the 'Ace Face' was only a bell boy. It was all style over substance. Carefully constructed fiction tied to a vital understanding that work is the key. He might be a lowly bellboy in a hotel but he shown working hard to earn the money that pays for his suits; scooter and play hard lifestyle. There is an earlier important statement scene in the movie too that needs noting. If I recall it correctly one of the characters makes a point to the effect that you have to work hard to get the things you want. This is the core of the aspirational Mod: a hard-work ethic, no matter what your work entails, to achieve your version of success.
Image and identity are a core intertwined aspect of being a Mod. No matter how wealthy or not, appearance will come top of the list because appearance is an outward projection of how we see ourselves . Checking your appearance in a passing shop window may seem vain, even affected, but that's the Beau Brummell in all of us who profess to being Mods. Giorgio Armani summed it up and in my estimation expressed it exactly..