Tuesday 21 July 2009


We love the fact that a lot of our customers nowadays have done far more research than in the past. We remember the days when desert boots were 'de rigeur' for portraying the ECW! It's a lot different now and many people go to great lengths to get the look correct. As we supply all sorts of costume from Museum and 'Walking portrait' to LRP and Renfair, we are frequently asked if we can supply an item from our standard range, "But I need it to have such & such as I'm playing a ........." The answer is nearly always "Yes, of course!"
The question of customising also arises when we are providing items for export. Our main area of expertise has always been historical clothing worn in the UK, with the additions of other European and Oriental fashions that influenced what was worn here. Now we are as likely to be asked to provide an 18th C Swedish wedding suit or a 17th C Italian Soldiers coat as anything else. This also means the research library here at Chimera costumes, grows at an ever increasing rate! I wondered whether it was just the weakness in sterling that caused this influx in export orders, then we had an e-mail from a customer in the U.S stating that his suit was of 'Exceptional quality'
I think that may be the reason.....

Monday 6 July 2009

Comparing the Market....

We make historical clothing, not 'fancy dress', we are not high fashion, 'collection changing twice a year' catwalk gurus. All these things though are interrelated. Fashion designers have always looked to the past for inspiration, the most famous probably being Vivian Westwood. Whatever colours and/or patterns are in fashion affect the materials available to us, - unless we have them made - so we too, have to look ahead to what will be in High street fashion 3 years ahead. We also get a lot clients who want items that go a 'step further' than those they can buy from normal outlets. This makes prediction of future trends quite important to us.
At the moment we have a lot of people visiting our site from www.wgsn.com who are trend forecasters for the fashion industry.They seem to think that one of our photos has possibilities for future silhouette outlines. We will see. You can almost guarantee that one of them will be, but which one?
I said at the beginning of this that we don't make 'fancy dress', but try telling that to 'dmoz' supposedly the most comprehensive human-reviewed directory of the web. Which of course is the problem. I've now spent two years trying to get them to recategorise us with no luck, as different editors move on and there's no continuity. I'd love them to remove us altogether as we spend hours answering queries that are not relevant to us -and other directories pick up the listings and include us as well! Making even more people land on the wrong web site! Talk about 'compare the meerkat!

With the appearance of what are realistically 'fall-front breeches' in the shops,'Out of Fashion' seems a bit of a misnomer. Will I have to change the name of the blog to 'Future Fashion', perhaps? Simples!