She was the rubber-knickered peroxide bombshell who put the sex into the Pistols. Now shes written a memoir of her years causing outrage at the heart of punk
Theres a photograph of Jordan Mooney, standing outside the clothes shop Sex, that perfectly encapsulates her extraordinary impact. Sex was Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwoods London boutique, which sold their designs along with fetishwear. It is also where in-house band the Sex Pistols were incubated.
Jordan was more than a shop assistant: she was the embodiment of the Sex aesthetic. In the picture, shes rocking a peroxide beehive, with a leotard, fishnet stockings and a sulky bombshell attitude stopping a passing businessman in his tracks. The look on his face says it all: in 1976, the sight of someone like Jordan was astonishing.
Men were confused by me, she says today. They would wolf-whistle, shout all kinds of things, even offer me money, because they didnt understand why I looked like I did. I was running a gauntlet every day. People were scared of me. And the funny thing is, I was actually quite shy.
Born Pamela Rooke in Seaford, a coastal town in East Sussex, Jordan wore jaw-dropping outfits and savage makeup, all of which made her the first face of punk. Only 19, she would leave the house wearing rubber knickers and stilettos, or sheer skirts without underwear deconstructing her clothes to her own incendiary design. It made the daily commute on British Rail, from Sussex to Chelsea, a drama in its own right. Some of the things I wore were quite near the knuckle, she says. People were apoplectic with rage. I had to be moved into first class for my own safety.
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