Fashion

  • The Frockery's Top 10 Eco-Fashion Re-Solutions

    January 1, 2017
    Why not adopt some or all of our Top 10 fashion ‘RE-solutions’ this new year and help save the planet and your wallet in style?
  • Frockers' Adventures in Weegieland

    November 18, 2014

    herald fashion awards finalist banner

    After milking our nomination for all it was worth as finalists in the Herald Fashion awards, Alison and Fi Frocker took themselves to Glasgow for the 'prize-giving' at the weekend. Having  chosen the Herald event over the Otway extravaganza that was taking place in Southend the same weekend - at which we had been offered the opportunity to sing backing vocals on the two-hit wonder's Christmas single - we were expecting  truly great things (and a much lesser hangover) by staying in Scotland.

    As it happened, our appearance had been touch and go as the frockmobile decided to play up after aquaplaning across Angus on Friday evening, but having received assistance from a knight of the road in the form of an AA patrol man (who should take a well deserved bow for exceptional service) we were soon back on track and arrived safely at our Glasgow hotel without major incident. We even had time for a wee wander down Sauchiehall Street, K Frocker's old stomping ground from her student days at Glasgow School of Art, before she deserted us for her absolutely fabulous buyer's job with an international fashion brand in London.

    Coinciding with the Christmas lights switch-on in George Square (as well as the star-studded BAFTAs), the taxi driver took us on grand tour of the city, due to closed roads, just to travel a mile or so. We therefore arrived fashionably late at the venue - the cavernous Arta, in the Merchant City - in anticipation of what had been described as a fabulous evening of fabulous fashion, fabulous canapés and fabulous everything else. It was undoubtedly an honour for us to be representing Angus in a veritable sea of central belt businesses, and, as the T shirt says, it had "gotta be better than Otway!"

    the frockers and friend

    The Frockers and a friend at the bar (where else?) [Image credit: The Herald]

    Fabulous frockery was certainly in abundance, and while we played it safe in our 80s Egon von Fürstenberg (Fi) and original vintage Blanes (Alison), there were some amazing outfits on display in a myriad of styles. Lynn from Herald Events looked especially sensational in her Nicci.N Boutique gown.

     

    Undoubtedly the most enjoyable aspect of the evening for us was meeting so many interesting people from the creative industries (maybe we don't get out enough). It was a particular pleasure to meet the talented Colleen Leitch, Scottish Graduate of the Year 2014, and her family, with whom we tussled for haggis balls and battered prawns as one member of the party looked on in patient anticipation of his gluten free equivalent (which eventually arrived, but it took rather too long).

    The main part of the evening was hosted by Scottish supermodel Eunice Olumide, who presided over a short fashion show, a pecha kucha slot on sustainable fashion (the business model on which the Frockery was founded in 2007, well before slow fashion became, er, 'fashionable') and, finally, the awards ceremony itself. Details of the winners can be found here and we were especially delighted to see Scot Street Style (who is never lost for words!) scoop best fashion Twitterati.

    We never expected to be short-listed for, never mind win, our category (preloved online retailer of the year) and congratulate Glasgow Vintage on their success. Despite one of our witty Twitter followers calling for a recount (with his tongue firmly in his cheek!), we can assure him and everyone else that the accolades we value most of all are those from our long standing, loyal customers across the UK and beyond. Their support has been especially important to us over this past year, which has been one of deep sadness for the frocker family and exceptionally challenging for our wee business. Things will never again be the same for us after the loss of the inimitable and irreplaceable Johnny Frocker, who could spot an Ossie Clark at 50 yards and who always kept us grounded as well as solvent. We miss you, Johnny!

    Apparently, the Otway Convention went well too, and our good friend Deadly the Roadie tweets us that he managed to avoid the 'back of the pantomime reindeer' role for which he (and his truly amazing legs) had been talent spotted! Otway for Christmas No 1, we say - but we know that, just like us, he won't be disappointed if he doesn't quite crack the top slot!

     

  • This Old Thing: back to the future for fashion

    June 26, 2014

    this old thing dawn o'porter

    Dawn O'Porter  Image credit: Channel 4

    Being vintage aficionados for more years than we care to remember, and having worn 60s, 70s and 80s clothes with pride the first time around (when we were younger, thinner and rather more dedicated followers of fashion), it was disappointing to read some of the cutting reviews of the first episode of Channel 4's homage to vintage and second hand fashion, This Old Thing, presented by Dawn O'Porter.

    We would say that, wouldn't we? Nevertheless, we  find ourselves driven to disagree with the snooty put downs about the "predictability" of the show, the clothes, the presenter and the concept by mass media, which, one and all, depend on fast fashion corporations for advertising revenue in these straitened economic times. The "predictability" of vested interests, you could say.

    We are not ashamed to admit that we enjoyed the programme, tweeted enthusiastically about it along with some virtual vintage loving chums and saw our website traffic spike to 50% more than its daily average.  Although we didn't rate a mention (nor did we expect to as a micro mini vintage outfit in the sticks), we were happy to receive collateral crumbs of interest via the search engines from many new visitors, whose interest  in vintage had clearly been piqued by the programme.

    Wall to wall sport elsewhere probably had something to do with it, too, but far be it from us to criticise the "predictability" of fit blokes chasing a ball around a field, or hitting a smaller one back and forward over a net. Each to their own! Even if our Andy is defending his Wimbledon title, it won't get exciting until much later in the competition, so we'll stick to old frockery for now.

    We found Dawn's efforts to convert fast fashionistas into lovers of all things retro laudable, but the initial negative reactions of the young contemporary case studies was testament to the cult of disposability that now permeates our society. One wonders if these same people have a similar phobia of sleeping in hotel beds with their second hand mattresses and sheets. Have they not heard of washing machines or dry cleaners? Do they even possess a needle and thread, or know how to stop a ladder in the tights with a spot of clear nail varnish?

    While we're at it, why not mention the war? Back in the old days, without any mod cons, our mothers and grandmothers looked after their (relatively few) clothes to prolong their lifetime out of necessity and all had the skills to do so. Hell, even the chief frocker learned how to darn a sock and turn a heel on four pins (she kids you not!) at school in the early 70s before gratefully dropping domestic science (at which she did not excel) in favour of Latin. It is deeply concerning to see how the old values of thrift, make-do-and-mend and quality have since been supplanted by mass production of trashable fast fashion. We have written about this before - see Slow fashion: winning the race for hearts and minds?

    Even buying high end high street won't guarantee someone else won't turn up in the same frock, so if you want to be unique you really need to embrace the new / old paradigm and look back to the future! Shopping vintage and preloved, making and altering your own clothes and using your imagination to create an individual look that is not dictated by fast fashion brands is, frankly, a no brainer, so we old frockers welcome This Old Thing and will continue to value our own old things, look after them and wear them on a daily basis.

    We like to think we are part of the revolution that is second-handedly saving the planet (and the wallet) in style. As we keep banging on, why buy new when it's more fashionable, frugal and eco-friendly to go retro?

    Still doubtful? Here are a few of our 'old things' on a young and beautiful model. For more examples and inspiration, take a look at our Frockery Fashionistas section, and why not consider entering our next Eco Fashion Challenge?

    juuli

    juuli2

    Photographer Oliver Schneider captured these stunning images of Juuli Vaajaniemi in some of our vintage frockery: a little black 40s cocktail dress (bought in a charity shop 10 years ago) and a 60s ivory silk sequinned two piece (pre-owned by a former model). Hair and make up by SC MakeUp Artistry,

  • Princess Diana's Dresses (and the rest)

    July 17, 2013

    OK, so we admit to being suckers for 80s fashion and could not resist the pull of last night's Channel 4 programme, Princess Diana's Dresses, which documented her fashion ascendancy from shy, awkward teenager sporting stereotypical Sloane Ranger attire to one of the most revered style icons of the 20th century.

    Soon after coming to public and paparazzi attention, Diana ditched her famously transparent Laura Ashley cotton skirts and cutesy tops in favour of a new level of sophistication,  demonstrating a growing confidence and natural ability to rock every type of outfit for every type of occasion, from casual to red carpet.

    Who could forget the black strapless taffeta Emanuel number she wore on her first official outing in 1981 and the accompanying press furore? Coincidentally we have a strikingly similar 80s Bernshaw  dress and matching coat in the stock room at a much more affordable price than the $192000 the original recently raised at auction! When we find it we'll post a picture here. We also have this stunning 80s Emanuel pleated silk blouse that may find its way into the catalogue eventually (if we can bear to part with it).

    80s emanuel silk blouse

    Watching the documentary was like reliving 'our' fashion era and even now we are drawn to alpaca jumpers, Laura Ashley and Liberty prints, hats with feather flourishes and other Diana style vintage pieces which we would have worn ourselves back in the day. We still have many of our own clothes and accessories that were bought in the 80s, some vintage (before it was popuar!) from Kensington, Portobello Road and Camden markets and others actually made in the 80s, including a few designer investment pieces which we are carefully storing for the next generation of frockers.

    Below is one example, a Belville Sassoon black cocktail dress with delicate lace bodice and satin cuffs modelled by Kelly Donaghy and photographed by Oliver Schneider, with hair and make up by SC MakeUp Artistry. Princess Diana wore a similar Belville Sassoon dress in 1989.

    80s black belville sassoon dress

    But there was more to Diana Princess of Wales than just her dresses. Here are a few pieces from the Frockery catalogue that are reminicent of her unforgettable fashion heyday.

    80s does 40s fuchsia dress

    Princess Diana style fair isle jumper

     

    Brown velvet hat with feathers

    80s Princess Diana style navy dot dress

    Electric blue 80s shoes

    red wool riding jacket with velvet trim

    White 80s tea dress with lace collar

  • Kaleidoscopic CATWALK 2013

    February 1, 2013

    catwalk 201

    One upcoming event not to be missed on the scintillating St Andrews fashion scene is CATWALK 2013 , which is to be held at Venue 1 on Saturday 9th February at 7.30pm. Sponsored by KPMG, all proceeds will go to charity as part of the university's gargantuan RAG week fundraising efforts.

    Along with other businesses from the local (and in our case not quite so local) area, The Frockery will be providing vintage pieces for the show in keeping with the event's 'kaleidoscope' theme. Not a lot of people know (we certainly didn't!) that the kaleidoscope was invented by  Sir David Brewster, a former principal of St Andrews University, and it's sure to be a colourful show.

    Tickets can be purchased here. Don't miss it!

  • Dressember 2012, week 1

    December 1, 2012

    The chief frocker thought she'd have a go at Dressember this year, but will be cheating by wearing skirts as well as dresses for the whole month. Can she do it? Tune in to Frockery Talk daily and follow her progress (or otherwise) until Hogmanay.

    1st December 

    It started with a skirt...  Deep purple longer length riding skirt with ultra-forgiving elasticated wasitband, to be precise (from Next Directory, winter 1988, bought in anticipation of giving birth to Danny Frocker in Feb '89 and has been worn as a winter staple ever since ). Teamed with a black wool polo neck jumper from M&S accessorised with a purple paisley fringed shawl and 80s black statement belt. It's freezing here, by the way!

    dressember 1st frockery

     2nd December

    Today we were supposed to be taking part in the vintage event at McManus Galleries in Dundee with our friends at RARA and the Prettty Vacant Showrooms. However, some sad circumstances and a minor, but debilitating, injury to Johnny Frocker conspired against us and we are needed elsewhere. It's still very cold here, so thick tights and boots are de rigueur for our determined Dressemberista. We are also in sombre mood, so the chief frocker's choice for Day 2 is a Zara grey dress with a little bit of pleating, accessorised with a delicate chain belt and 70s pendant.

    dressember 02

     3rd December

    Dressember Day 3’s offering is an easy wear, ultra comfortable and surprisingly warm vintage teal print wool dress with pussy bow, worn with boots (again!) because it has been snowing here today.

    dressember day 3 frockery

    4th December

    Day 4 already! Monochrome dogtooth check stretch skirt, originally from M&S, teamed with a black wool twin set, Scottie dog brooch and chunky necklace. Worn with boots (again!) as it has been snowing.

    dressember frockery day 4

     5th December

    For Day 5, it's a French Connection (via charity shop) LBD, accessorised with a leather Diesel belt, round pendant necklace and charm bracelet. Worn with charcoal diamond pattern tights and black calf length lace up boots.

    dressember day 5 frockery

    6th December

    We're heading up the A90 towards Aberdeen today where it's even colder than here. The car contains the obligatory shovel and extra blankets just in case! For Dressember Day 6 we have opted for a vintage black leather skirt teamed with a feline print wool jumper and black leather gilet, accessorised with a black and silver metallic belt. Worn with burnt orange tights, black biker boots and satchel.  We do own shoes, honestly!

    dressember day 6 frockery

    [UPDATE: Well that was an adventure! The chief frocker is feeling mighty grateful to have been dug out of a snowbound car park in Laurencekirk this afternoon by the lovely ladies from Pamper Zone Boutique and an obliging man with grit who happened to be passing. She does not plan on venturing north of Brechin again until spring.]

    7th December

    One week of Dressember done and dusted and for Day 7, we have chosen a (several years old) Phase Eight grey and rose print dress with (even older) black wrapover cardigan, grey tights and Jigsaw green suede shoes (we told you we had shoes!)

    dressember day 7 frockery

    Week 2 outfits are blogged here.