Rebels and Raves: YMC Celebrates Britain’s Subcultures in New Collection

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YMC x the Museum of Youth Culture
YMC x the Museum of Youth CultureMCs at Notting Hill Carnival, London, 1983. Photography by Peter Anderson

To mark its 25th anniversary, the London-based label is delving into the country’s rich and varied youth culture history

London-born clothing label YMC turns 25 this year. To celebrate, the brand has teamed up with the Museum of Youth Culture on a new collection that pays tribute to the trailblazing British youth movements of the past. This includes the Heavy Metal and Suedehead groups of the 1960s; the arrival of Reggae and Fetish in the 70s; and the birth of Indie and the UK rave scene in the 1980s and 90s.

Shining a light on “the extraordinary everyday stories of growing up in Britain”, the Museum of Youth Culture is formed from the extensive archival collections of YOUTH CLUB, a non-profit Heritage Funded collection boasting over 150,000 photographs, ephemera and educational texts from some 400 photographers and writers. Tracing the impact of youth movements in Britain from their first “inklings” in the 1920s right through to Gen Z’s Extinction Rebellion, the museum’s principal aim is to “inspire future generations for positive change”.

With an enduring passion for music, literature and the arts, YMC founder Fraser Moss delved into the museum’s vast archives ahead of the label’s anniversary, selecting six electrifying images which together offer a celebratory portrait of Britain’s bold subcultural history. Printed onto a collection of limited-edition T-shirts, these images include MCs performing at Notting Hill carnival in 1983, a masked couple at a London fetish club, and 1990s ravers at Manchester’s historic nightclub, The Boardwalk.

“This collaboration is close to my heart, British youth culture represented part of the building blocks that created the DNA of YMC,” says Moss. “I may not have affiliated myself with all these youth movements but from a distance, I made note of their uniforms and took inspiration thereafter.”

YMC x the Museum of Youth Culture is available from next week.