Frockery Talk

  • Fast fashion for men

    May 21, 2008

    Fast Fashion is something the men in our lives do well.

    They enter a shop, usually the first one they come to, look quickly through the rails until they find the type of garment they need in what they consider to be an inoffensive style/colour and in their size, pay quickly (sometimes muttering “how much?” under their breath) and leave.

    None of the “does my bum look big in this?”, or wasting time and effort trying things on, let alone making a considered decision as to what might suit them. It’s simply a chore that has to be completed as painlessly as possible when their best jumper gets felted or all their shirts have turned a murky shade of pink after they have inadvertently left a red sock in the washing machine.

    It can of course be worse when they make a determined effort to be fashionable and their ‘trying too hard’ results are in evidence on high streets everywhere. Unlike the majority of women, however, they don’t lack confidence and have far fewer hang ups about the way they look, which can only be good.

    With apologies to all the many fashionable and style conscious men out there, some of whom shop at The Frockery!

  • You can't go wrong - or can you?

    May 15, 2008

    "You can't go wrong!", exclaimed Lorraine Kelly on GMTV this morning, positively salivating over a white tiered dress from trash fashion outlet Primark costing just £9.  Her male stylist sidekick, who was smugly showcasing it as 'Primarni', naturally nodded in simpering agreement.

    Just when we thought the media sentiment was turning - and it seems to be thus over at the BBC, whose online magazine Thread actively promotes ethical and sustainable style - LK has to go and spoil it all by encouraging us to pick up a cheap frock at a fast fashion joint before jetting off on our summer holidays without a care in the world and, clearly, without a care for the world.

    Lorraine isn't the only journalist who is promoting cheap-as-chips fashion one minute and bemoaning the environmental impact of transporting goods halfway round the world the next, all the while sympathising with the plight of overseas workers, many of them children, who are paid a pittance for their labour. These issues are all inextricably linked, and as long as we continue to support an industry which is founded upon the exploitation of both people and planet, we are all very much part of the problem.

  • The end is nigh for trash fashion

    May 13, 2008

    Yes, the end is nigh for disposable ‘trash’ fashion. Well, it must be true if the BBC are telling us that cheap chic (an oxymoron if ever there was one) is on the way out. Have they been reading our blog, we wonder?

    For the past decade or so, fast ‘fad’ fashion has dominated the high streets and supermarket aisles. A new t-shirt costs less than a bottle of wine, with the result that binge buying of cheap clothes has become something of a national pastime. Meanwhile, consumers have been largely content to enjoy the fruits of someone else’s exploited labour, or else remain blissfully ignorant of the workings of the global economy.

    However, there is evidence to suggest that the trash fashion trend may be stalling. Rocketing oil prices are taking their toll on the all important bottom line, which means an inevitable increase in the price of throwaway clothing for the consumer. Let’s face it, garment prices couldn’t come down any further without becoming ‘giveaway’ fashion!

    The credit crunch is now biting households hard across the country, which has meant a sudden and significant rise in the cost of living. As we all struggle to meet the escalating costs of life’s necessities like food, fuel and mortgage payments, we are becoming far more discerning consumers. Increasingly, we are looking for best value based on quality rather than price alone, all of which adds up to more bad news for the fast fashion industry.

    There are also signs that the mass media’s love affair with ‘fast’ culture is coming to an end. Even the BBC are now acquainting consumers with the reality of how and by whom these cheap garments are produced and how far they have to travel to reach our high streets and supermarkets. All so that we can wear them once (or not at all) and throw them away. We reckon it amounts to collective insanity.

    In reality, there is no need to stay a fast fashion clone when you can so easily and affordably set your own style with the textiles that are already in circulation. We are delighted that the BBC and style gurus everywhere are at last catching up with what we’ve known all along. It is heartening to see them embracing The Frockery’s own eco-fashion tips with such enthusiasm!

  • Landfill Fashion: what a waste

    April 21, 2008

    We are becoming increasingly fed up of living in a society which seems hell bent on creating ever greater mountains of unnecessary waste. From plastic bags in their billions to fast food packaging, cheap promotional items that no one wants or needs, and even shrink wrap covering for supermarket  cucumbers, we are drowning in the stuff.

    Textiles waste is a particular bugbear of ours. Did you know that in the UK alone, we throw out in excess of one million tonnes of textiles every year, most of which ends up in landfill sites?

    Far from being harmless holes in the ground where we can conveniently bury anything and everything we no longer want, landfill sites cause significant environmental damage. In the case of landfilled textiles, garment dyes and bleaches can cause toxic chemical seepage into the ground and water courses. As the material decomposes, the build up of methane gas presents further hazards.

    Although environnmental issues have been gradually nudging their way up the political agenda, there is no evidence that our throwaway society is ready to take responsibility for its wasteful behaviour. We need a sea change in attitude and, while there is some great work being done to reduce textiles waste through reuse and recycling, the clothing industry remains awash with cheap ‘fast’ fashion which is likely to end up in landfill in a matter of months if not weeks.

    So how can we as concerned individuals make a difference yet still stay stylish (and solvent!)? Well, we have put together a list of simple ‘RE’ ACTIONS  to the relentless pressures of the fast fashion industry, and we hope the following top ten tips on working towards a greener wardrobe will be useful for waste aware, eco-friendly fashionistas like ourselves.


    The Frockery's Top 10 eco-fashion ‘RE’ actions

    1.   RESIST temptation. Don’t buy it if you don’t need it! Your wardrobe is probably already bulging with impulse buys, many of which you have never worn, so you know it makes sense.

    2.   REJECT fast fashion outlets and cheap imports which have been transported halfway round the world, may have been produced by an exploited workforce, including child labour, in dangerous conditions, and will probably fall apart after one wash.

    3.   RETHINK your buying habits. Support ethical, fair trade businesses and ‘home grown’ designers.

    4.   REUSE clothing and accessories. Buy from vintage, second hand or charity shops, car boot sales and auction websites – or swap clothes with friends

    5.   REDISCOVER the back of your wardrobe and the darkest corners of your attic which may well harbour some long forgotten outfits that are yearning for a new lease of life.

    6.   RESTYLE your current wardrobe. Get the sewing box out, refashion a dress into a top and matching bag, add a few embellishments, chop off some sleeves, or just shorten a hemline or two.

    7.   REFRESH your ‘old’ clothes by adding belts, scarves and complementary accessories for an instant style update.

    8.   RECYCLE the clothing you no longer need. Drop it off at your local textile recycling bank, freecycle it, or else donate to charity.

    9.   RESELL your unwanted clothes on one of the internet auction sites or, if you don’t want to do it yourself, through a local or online dress agency.

    10. RESEARCH environmentally friendly fashion alternatives which combine style with sustainability. We recommend Kate Fletcher’s Lifetimes project as a great starting point for both information and inspiration.


    recycle  symbol

  • Frockery shopping for frugal fashionistas

    February 13, 2008

    The credit crunch is taking its toll on household budgets everywhere as the cost of living continues to soar, with upwardly mobile mortgage payments, escalating fuel prices and public transport fares making ever greater demands on all our disposable incomes.  Meanwhile, as the credit card bills continue to roll in as regular reminders of our buy now, pay later festive spending activities, it’s time to take firm financial action if we are to get back on budget. 

    In the depths of winter, however, we all need a few little indulgences to help us beat the cold weather blues and there is nothing like a new (or nearly new) fashion look to make us feel like the million dollars we don’t have! Fortunately for frugal fashionistas, The Frockery specialises in the sort of fashion which suits small budgets and, literally, doesn’t cost the earth. We endeavour to bring our customers the very best in pre-loved apparel, from vintage and retro fashion to top quality contemporary labels which have been worn only once or twice or sometimes not at all.  

    The Frockery motto is simple: why buy new when it is more fashionable, frugal and eco-friendly to go retro?   

    As veteran collectors, buyers and sellers of pre-owned, vintage and retro clothing and accessories from eras gone by, mainly the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s, The Frockery team are big fans of the ‘slow fashion’ genre which celebrates sustainability and ethical elegance as opposed to the disposable fast fashion clone culture which dominates today’s high streets.  

    London Fashion Week has once again demonstrated that designers are continuing to borrow from the past for inspiration and we can all take a leaf out of their style files. There is no need to spend a fortune on the latest fashion trends when these are so often derived from bygone eras and you can adapt, reinvent and accessorise items from the back of your own wardrobe for next to nothing. Failing that, come and have a browse through The Frockery virtual rails for some affordable vintage fashion - or else just some good old fashioned inspiration!

  • The Glasgow School of Art Fashion Show

    February 3, 2008

    The Glasgow School of Art Fashion Show 2008, 4th and 5th March @ The Vic, Glasgow School of Art. Tickets available from Tickets Scotland, £7.50/£5.50 (concession).

    An array of unique and exciting designs from 3rd year undergraduate textiles students (including The Frockery's very own Kirstin) will once again be showcased at this prestigious annual fashion event! For more information, visit the GSA Fashion Show's MySpace.