Ken Russell's portraits of 1950s UK "Teddy Girls"

Spotted on WFMU's Beware of The Blog today, this incredible gallery of "Teddy Girl" portraits from the UK shot in 1955. Wikipedia explains the subculture here, and Coop, who pointed us to the gallery, elaborates:

The rockers in postwar Britain were called "Teddy Boys" because they adapted Edwardian-era styling cues (drainpipe trousers, long coats, etc.) to American rockabilly fashion. It's a scene that survived the fifties, kept going through the sixties, seventies, and is still around today.

In this case, "Teddy Girls" are women in the scene who opted for the male elements of the style, like short pompadour haircuts and trousers.

I've never seen these photos before, but it's interesting for the butch "drag king" elements, which seems pretty daring for the era.

Also, the photos are by genius gonzo director Ken Russell!

Image: "17 year old Josie Buchan was a fashion student with Russell’s future wife, Shirley, at the college Russell also attended. Josie introduced Ken to her Teddy Girl friends. Here she shows off a thin black velvet tie and D.A haircut. It would have been incredibly rare to find a woman sporting this type of men’s hairstyle back then."