Buffalo Stance: how one subculture invented styling
‘Killer’, ‘Hard’ and ‘Tougher than the rest’. These were all phrases adopted by legendary stylist Ray Petri who brought together a small group of friends under the moniker Buffalo and subsequently changed the way we think of styling today. It was a look, an attitude, a crew marked by their signature navy blue MA-1 bomber jackets with the word ‘BUFFALO’ printed on the back. Perhaps not a subculture per se, but the style that evolved from the Buffalo movement was inherently subcultural, taken from the streets and translated into pioneering images that were transmitted to the rest of the world through the pages of ‘80s style bibles i-D, The Face and Arena. Sportswear paired with high fashion, men wearing skirts and the quintessential ‘80s look of a bomber with a pair of Levi’s 501s were all spearheaded by the creative community around Buffalo which included the likes of Mark Lebon, Jamie Morgan, Judy Blame, Nick and Barry Kamen, Mitzi Lorenz, Neneh Cherry and a young Naomi Campbell. When Petri passed away from AIDS in 1989, he had not enjoyed much commercial success but left behind a legacy that would change the look of fashion forever.
In this episode we hear from Mark Lebon and Jamie Morgan who were there from the beginning. They discuss what London was like, how this group came to be and what Buffalo really was. i-D’s Editor in Chief Alastair McKimm explains the importance of Buffalo to his own work as a stylist and creative director. Kasia Maciejowska, editor and author of the book The House of Beauty and Culture discusses the importance of styling and how Ray Petri changed how we interact with the fashion image while writer and researcher Eilidh Duffy explains how the Buffalo look permeated fashion and why it remains influential today.
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