Frockery Talk

  • Lexi rocks the polka dot frock!

    August 3, 2012

    One of our lovely young customers fell in love with this dress when she saw it on Facebook. A day later she was wearing it, beautifully!

    lexi in rockabilly polka dots

    Image courtesy of Teejay & Lexi

  • Frockery Focus on Droopy & Browns

    July 23, 2012

    There are some vintage labels which so perfectly epitomise great design, supreme quality and sought after style that we are always delighted and excited when they arrive at the Frockery looking for appreciative new owners.

    Droopy & Browns is indubitably one such marque and we are doubly delighted and excited to have two of their dresses, designed by the late Angela Holmes, for sale in our current catalogue. Since such pieces are all essentially limited editions, they are becoming increasingly sought after by discerning contemporary collectors.

    From humble market stall beginnings in York in 1971, Droopy & Browns opened their first shop in Fossgate, moving to nearby Stonegate in 1972 and eventually opening seven more shops across the UK as Angela’s flamboyant designs and beautifully made clothes continued to hit the spot for a loyal and growing customer base. Our own first memories of Droopy & Browns are of their upmarket store in Frederick Street, Edinburgh, which we were too poor to shop in at the time but still appreciated their stunning creations and became lifelong fans.

    Ahead of her time in the ethical fashion stakes, Angela deliberately avoided the predictable  mainstream, rejecting the exploitative and unsustainable nature of ‘fast fashion’ which was already beginning to rear its ugly mass produced head. Instead she stayed true to her principles and lovingly produced exquisite, individually crafted pieces to her own exacting specifications.  Her designs undoubtedly had, and still have, the wow factor for women, deriving inspiration from bygone eras and celebrating femininity and romance, often with a theatrical twist.

    The flamboyant Christine Hamilton, in a 2010 interview with the Daily Mail, confessed to being an avid Droopy & Browns fan and enthused about her favourite Scarlett O’Hara dress:

    “I got it from the fabulous Droopy & Browns shop in York, which I got to know when I was at university there. It’s a wonderful, red full-skirted taffeta, which is just heaven. I’ve had it for about 20 years and it’s completely over the top. It’s off the shoulder and Scarlett O’Hara sums it up, I think. I’ve worn it everywhere.”

    Sadly, Angela’s untimely death in 2000 heralded the beginning  of the end for Droopy & Browns, although the company continued to trade for a few more years under the stewardship of Angela’s brother Jonathan, with a strong design portfolio inherited from Angela herself and complemented by sympathetic new designs by a long time colleague and close friend.

    In this upbeat press article from 2003, Frock of ages, the future still looked rosy, with Droopy & Browns set to move into new city centre premises in York. Jonathan also offered an  interesting insight into the history of the brand, including how it came to have such an unusual name:

    “When it came to picking the name, I went through a list of the usual type of boutique names and Angela just curled her lip. She said: ‘I want it to be Edwardian: all droopy and brown… that’s what we’ll call it – Droopy & Browns’.”

    Alas, Droopy & Browns was ultimately brought down by Lloyd’s Bank when it recalled its loans, prematurely according to a company insider who insisted they were still trading profitably, and leaving its many loyal customers bereft.

    You can read a more in-depth account of Angela Holmes’s lasting legacy in Nicola Gooch's Guardian obituary,  A talented performer devoted to building a business of beauty, style and quality in fashion.

    Meanwhile here are the two Droopy & Browns dresses we currently have in stock which have all the Angela Holmes hallmarks of quality and style.

    Vintage 70s Victorian style floral maxi dress  

    droopy & browns 70s vintage Victorian style floral dress

    Russet red raw silk evening dress 

    droopy & browns raw silk russet evening dress

    And here are two more examples of Droopy & Browns dresses from our Sold Gallery, the first modelled beautifully by our own Kirstin Frocker.

    80s wild silk ball gown and matching bolero 

    Droopy & Browns wild silk 80s ballgown

    Droopy & Browns 80s ballgown

    Droopy & Browns 80s silk ballgown

    Berry red crepe dress

    berry red droopy and browns dress

  • Bodycon frockery that won't stretch the budget

    July 22, 2012

    Our latest arrivals include three curve hugging bodycon dresses which are just perfect for the summer we have almost had! Generously stretchy without stretching your budget, they are sure to brighten up your day whatever the weather.

    First up is this Escada Sport stretch dress in a tropical toucan print featuring leaves, flowers and toucans in bright primary colours. Just pull it on and go!

    escada sport tropical print bodycon dress

    Next we have this bright red Warehouse stretch wrap dress with a plunge neckline and flamenco style frills. 

    warehouse red bodycon frilled dress

    Finally, this cute pink and white gingham and cherry print dress by Spanish designer Toni Francesc is sure to turn heads with its wrapover styling, ruching detail on the hip and graduated frilled hemline.

    Toni Francesc pink ginghamn and cherry print bodycon dress

  • We've got a lovely bunch of Burberrys

    July 18, 2012

    Our regular readers and customers will know that we have a soft spot for Burberrys coats and have quite a  collection of our own, inlcuding a favourite wear-anywhere single breasted mac, a vintage 60s country raincoat in an iridescent green and a classic beige trench coat.

    The good news is that we have several Burberrys listed in the Frockery catalogue and some more have just arrived, so why not check these beauties out?

    Even better news is that the nova check shawl pictured below will be sent with our compliments to the buyer of the first of these Burberrys coats that is sold! The buyer of the men's Harrington jacket will receive a complimentary vintage mod scarf.

    Burberrys Prorsum beige trench coat

    burberrys trench coat

    Burberrys beige raincoat with belt   (Sorry now sold!)

    burberrys beige raincoat

    Burberrys Prorsum creamy beige classic trench coat  (Sorry now sold!)

    burberrys creamy beige trench coat

    Burberrys navy raincoat (Sorry now sold!)

    Burberrys navy raincoat

    Burberrys beige raincoat mac with wool nova check lining and cuffs

    Burberrys beige raincoat mac with wool lining and cuffs

    And not forgetting the boys... a Burberrys beige Harrington jacket (Sorry now sold!)

    burberrys mens beige Harrington jacket

    This tan nova check shawl (not Burberrys!) will be sent to the first buyer of any of the above coats and we'll send one of our  men's vintage mod scarf to the buyer of the Harrington jacket

    tan nova check pashmina shawl

     UPDATE:  Ladies shawl  has gone to the first Burberrys buyer and men's mod scarf has gone to the Harrington jacket buyer.

  • Sliding Sale now on at The Frockery!

    July 14, 2012

    Be quick, save more in our SLIDING SALE!

    This weekend only, get 20% off!

    20% off all orders this weekend only (14th & 15th July 2012) using code FROCK-20 at the checkout.

    Monday 16th July only, get 15% off!

    15% off all orders on Monday only (16th July)  using code FROCK-15 at the checkout.

    Tuesday 17th July only, get 10% off!

    10% off all orders on Tuesday only (17th July) using code FROCK-10 at the checkout.

  • Not just a pretty face!

    July 13, 2012

    We thought our readers would like a preview of some of the images captured by photographer Louise Beattie for the next issue of Invite Magazine, due out in September. It was a privilege for the Frockery to be invited to provide the clothing and accessories for the recent photo shoot at Kinnettles Castle in Angus and to work with fellow dollyfrocker  Sandra Cormack, whose hair and makeup artistry transformed young model Sula Powell from fresh faced teen into veritable femme fatale. A real team effort which achieved a truly stunning result!

    invite magazine shoot kinnettles

    invite magazine shoot knnettles

    invite magazine shoot kinnettles

    But the lovely Sula Powell is more than just a pretty face. At just 15 years old, not only does she have a great future ahead of her as a signed model, but she is also an active and passionate fundraiser for charity.  Read all about this inspiring and genuinely nice young woman in the summer 2012 issue of The Bite Magazine, and don't forget to look out for her in Invite Magazine.