How to Use Instagram as a Costumier

instagram

Instagram is one of the most powerful tools for costume professionals and fans to connect, share ideas, promote their brand or Etsy shop and keep up with what everyone is up to. If you are not already using Instagram to promote what you do or simply enjoy seeing people with similar interests then have no … Read more

How Toxic is Your Hat?

hat

Have you ever stopped to think about your favourite vintage hat and its connection to the original Mad Hatter in 1865? Fear not for this is not the Daily Mail health column but just a century ago literally thousands of hat makers received chronic exposure to mercury fumes when felting rabbit furs to make headwear. … Read more

Top Made-to-Measure Regency Breeches

regency breeches

“There are moments, Jeeves, when one asks oneself, ‘Do trousers matter?’” P.G. Wodehouse’s Bertie Wooster once remarked and his reliable manservant responded, “The mood will pass, sir.” Without a doubt breeches represent a key part of any pre-Victorian outfit and indeed have not been unknown in following decades since. Fortunately the reenactment world is filled … Read more

Success for #RedressingPleasure!

The Museum of London has succeeded in securing £10,000 to preserve its display of 18th and 19th century costumes in a scene of the Vauxhall pleasure gardens. The crowdfund set up through the Art Fund was launched by fashion curator Timothy Long and broke its target with days still to go after nearly 250 backers … Read more

How did Napoleon Change Fashion?

The Napoleonic Wars had a profound impact on European culture, not least in fashion. Britain experienced the ‘Regency’ almost simultaneously with France’s ‘Empire stye’. In Paris this could be seen in the adoption of Egyptian clothes and Prussian styles after the conquest at Austerlitz in 1807. During the French Revolution in the 1790s, the rise … Read more

Janet Arnold’s Incredible Pattern Books

Janet Arnold

Janet Arnold’s publications are some of the most popular guides in the costume world. Her drawings are taken from original garments in collections throughout Britain and are supplemented with details of their construction and laid out on grid paper with construction comments and fabric details. From wrapping gowns, riding habits, pelisses, and chemises to sack … Read more

Costume sales: Is First-come Fair?

sale

The Royal Shakespeare Company’s eagerly anticipated costume sale on September 23, 2017, saw thousands of costume fans queue for hours to get hold of unique treasures. But many towards the back of the queue were left with a gutted warehouse as though a hurricane had torn through it. The winners were the hardcore who had … Read more

Sartorial Death Metal?

death metal

Heavy metal is generally thought to be anything but dressy. But a few bands towards the extreme end of the metal spectrum have defied the stereotype of denim and corpse paint by opting for more tailored attire. Akercocke Blackened death metal legends Akerocke reformed last year and have since released a new album “Renaissance In … Read more

The Timeless Hussar Uniform

hussar uniform

From the Napoleonic Wars onwards the hussar uniform became the most opulent and decorative item of military style to have ever graced the blood and smoke of the battlefield. The eminent costume historian James Laver described the visual purposes of military uniform succinctly in his book ‘Modesty in Dress’ as: enhance the manly feeling of … Read more