Friday, 11 December 2015

Production News - Story of a Jacket

With just the right amount of Bette Lynch - this animal faux fur jacket is the party season MUST have. Here at House of Foxy - we feel like proud parents and want to share the story of its making.

I have in my collection of vintage clothing, a lovely and very wearable lightweight 50s jacket. Its warm but not cumbersome and goes with everything. Its starting to get overworked and because of its merits, i decided it would be a great addition to our range AND would be most helpful for all our customers who tend to love the same things as me ;-)

So after further research and the discovery of a fabulous faux fur fabric with a low pile, the new 50s Cute Swing jacket was born. See a similar style from butte rick below.

 Now - we don't like faux fur at our production unit - the fibres get everywhere and clog up the machines. We made this costly mistake before - so this fabric was perfect, it is furry but has a low pile. We also liked the slightly lower key leopard print - not a full on Bette Lynch. non UK readers - google it ;-)

From a design feature point of view - we wanted this cute jacket to be different from our very popular 50s Shawl Swing coat. This jacket is 5 inches shorter, has bracelet length sleeves rather than full length and one button fastening at the collar rather than the open style. We chose a curved collar because it hugs the neck in that snuggly way and reminded me of snaps of marilyn in the early 50s with Joe Dimaggio. (I daren't add any pics because they are really hot on charging people for use)

The buttons is a simple faceted style in bronze/black and is, as ever, from a British supplier. We were going to go sparkly but we felt this was more elegant.

Basically - we are really thrilled with this jacket. Its lightweight but top quality and we hope to make in some heavier colours.

Is there a colour way/style you would like to see in our collection? Email us or message through Facebook - because we would LOVE to know!

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Partywear Photoshoot

Last week we did our annual partywear photoshoot with Burlesque star Missy Malone. Missy was our very first model back in December 2010 and we have worked with her ever since.

I always struggle with timing our shoots because there is always something new coming out that will inevitably be missed. Already we have two dresses that we couldn't get sampled in time - one of which is a hot leopard print style.

Nethertheless, it was a great shoot with plenty of new and exciting styles that we will most likely continue on to early spring.

A lot to get through :-)

This was an easy going shoot, with a simple white background - but we had a lot to get through. We are trying to slowly build up an archive of model shots to show customers, returning and new, how the styles will look their best. We are expecting to do this with separates and to create seasonal look books. Customers tell us that this really helps them to make good choices and build their own looks up.

The party skirt 

New products include the 50s Silver Party Skirt - a full box pleat skirt in silver brocade. So fabulous and very wearable for those who prefer to avoid dresses. But also - and coming soon - is our superb 50s Marilyn Jacket in soft leopard print. My days of venturing out to a party in winter without a coat are completely over so I cannot wait for this - its just the perfect answer to party wear glamour!

To see our party wear lookbook - click here

Many thanks again to Missy and to Dom from Bespoke Imagery for a great day and inspirational pics!

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Production News - The 20s Collection

Every season, we try to bring out new and interesting designs. Every year, we look to launching something special. Last year, we launched menswear, the year before was the start of our 60s collection.

This year, we are delighted to launch our fledgling 1920s collection.  This short blog post will give an overview of what we are up to at the moment. I can't possibly cover all our research and plans on one post - plus i except it will be a bit boring. But anyway - enjoy xx

Design & Inspiration

From a designers point of view, the initial 1920s shape was fairly simple with much less complex pattern work than other decades. However, there was so much imagination through the fabrics used (rich velvets & chiffons), print and wonderful embellishments and decoration such as beading, jewellery and headwear. All to create one of the most chic and elegant eras in fashion.

This is the start of so much change in womenswear heralded by social change. 

Although the main shape is very simple, the 20s look was so much more than just a drop waist flapper dress. Its amazing how much variety was created through draping, godet insertions, neckline styles, gathers and frills. 

What i love about the 20s:-
- art deco print and style line echoes 
- the a-symmetry! In neckline or hemline
- gorgeous hats, headwear and shoes 
- all the accessories

A Modern Perspective

Although i have now become somewhat obsessed by the 20s, and have acquired many lovely original garments and repro accessories too, I did consider the style to be fairly unwearable for our modern life. I considered it fairly unflattering. However, after dressing for a party last year I changed my mind completely and i think I have been unfair on the era! (although this may have been due to all the terrible fancy dress flapper dresses around)

Its safe to say that the early part of the decade was fairly frumpy and certainly, we prefer the styles from 1925 onwards. However, I was surprised by comments from the curvier ladies at the party who said they genuinely felt great in the straight dresses. I imagine for those of us who are apple or pillar shapes then this can be a really flattering style.

Our Collection

see our collection here

Since there are many gorgeous beaded dresses already around, we have decided to focus on chiffon and velvet styles.

The collection contains two chiffon dresses and some jewellery at the moment but we hope to add another dress style soon in velvet. Due to the time of year, we are focussed mainly on dresses for parties or evening wear but expect to add some daywear into the new year and early spring production.

I also want to add a coat into the collection - but there is so much to do first!

We are also delighted to be working with vintage milliner Lily Lewis to bring some beautiful headwear to go with our dresses. She has designed a exclusive selection which is matches beautifully with our new dresses and is coming very soon!

My marvellous hat!

Further reading and resources:-
- Art Deco Fashion - Suzanne Lussier
- Fashion Sourcebook 1920s - Charlotte Fiell & Emmanuelle Dirix
- The cut of Womens Clothes - Norah Waugh
- Sears resource book - 1920a

Our 1920s collection can be seen here 

Monday, 19 October 2015

Goodwood Revival Review

Goodwood Revival 2015

This is a just a quick review of this year's Goodwood Revival. As always, a wonderful weekend of fun and frolics plus a smidge of hard work thrown in.

We'd love to play a bit more as the event has so much to see and do - it's simply overwhelming. For us, our days at the event start at 7am and we shut at 7pm - but the days really do fly by.

This was our 5th year and I discovered another section of the event that I didn't even know was there! This time - a whole area dedicated to 40s re-enactment (although its not new) and bumped into Harry & Edna, Charlotte from Restoration cake, Lillian Love of pinup model fame and friends (see below). I was lucky enough to be gifted an extremely nice cup of tea and a rest.

In and amongst - Edna, Charlotte from Restoration Cake, Lillian Love & friends

For those who haven't been to Goodwood Revival - the event for most is centred around vintage car racing. For others, its centred on dressing up and general nostalgia. Around 80% of visitors dress up in original vintage or reproduction clothing. The event has a vintage fairground and plenty of other vintage themed entertainment throughout the weekend.

We love that every year we are visited by some of our regular customers that we maybe only see at Goodwood and they come to show us their fabulous outfits. We also enjoy meeting new customers and love their enthusiasm for the event.

Goodwood Revival customer in our 40s Halter Swing ensemble - great hat too!

So pleased this lovely lady came to visit - looking gorgeous in emerald green :-)

This year, we also took a rail of 20th Century Chap stock to trial so that we can look at having a separate stall for the menswear in future. Apparently, this is especially helpful for those ladies wishing to deposit their men somewhere so that they can get on with the shopping ;-) I promise to bring the bagatelle for you chaps!

Looking dapper in Chap - accompanied by lovely lady in our wrap circle dress

Next year, we intend to bring less variety but more limited edition garments made especially for Goodwood. I have got lots planned so - for all our wonderful Goodwood Revival customers -we will see you next year as usual - stall 21 in The Revival Market. xxx

The lovely Charlotte in our Halter Swing Set with Jeremy from HOF & 2CC

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Autumn Photoshoot

Autumn Photoshoot

Despite our national preference for long summer evenings and a greater prospect of heat than normal, I am glad summer has broken to Autumn. I love the colours, the weather ain't really that bad and the best thing about Autumn is the clothing.

We start planning the seasonal collections in advance and our Autumn shoot was actually done in July. However, you wouldn't have known it for the weather.

Plenty of new colours and styles

Colours for this season's collection are:-
- navy
- coral
- rich earthy colours such as deep reds, stone, mustard and brown
- black as always

Its difficult to follow specific colour palettes when we also try to represent the decades separately (20s through to 60s) - but we feel with this collection we have nailed it.

The Shoot

Many will recall we used to do era photoshoots using a model to identify with that decade (30s at the Midland Hotel, 40s with Lola Lamour etc). However, I decided to change this to a seasonal shoot where i can include whatever i want without restriction. This is because I design a style when it feels right not because we are doing a specific photoshoot.

So for the moment, our shoots feature 20s dresses right through to 60s - but as many of our customers mix decades and looks whenever they like - this seems right for now.

Again we used Tanya Beetham - a fabulous model who brings that something extra special to each shoot. Her colouring of strawberry blonde works great with the season palette and I just love freckles cos it reminds me of my sister Becky ;-)

The lovely Bethany joined us again and worked her magic - I wanted a soft hairstyle of flowing curls that would translate across the eras represented by the shoot.

We again used the set for the shoot - using the wallpaper theme to join the collection. Chris Lord was the photographer and again brought a new approach to the shoot. He is a very inspiring photographer and we have recently worked on a menswear shoot together which will be soon revealed.

New Products

We have some amazing 20s dresses coming in chiffons and a collection of dresses and separates in an exclusive vintage repro print on rayon marocaine crepe!!! (for fabric fans - you will know why this is exciting...).

I am hoping to get a look book online soon - but email us if you want a brochure as we have a few left from Goodwood.


To Bethany for always being delightful
To Tanya for being a free spirit - never change :-)
To Chris for being up for owt! 
To Sue - for the coffee and running around

Friday, 18 September 2015

Twinwood 2015

We had sun, we had rain, we had dancing, fun and frolics! Plus plenty of shopping... not only in our stall but we also spent some time perusing the rather marvellous vintage stalls and picked up some real gems!

As mentioned time and time again, we love this event. Its down to earth in the way it runs and the people that visit and we simply have so much fun!

A few highlights from the event:-

Electric Swing Circus
Very 40s! Edna!

Purchase of classic 40s coat - it really is a rectangle! (terribly warm though)

Harry & Edna's battered kettle - a life saver!

Our fab customers!

Carradine's Cockney Singalong - with Champagne Charlie - very silly

More fabulous customers!

Thankyou to all our lovely customers who visited - see you again next year

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Get Ready for Goodwood Revival!

The first time we had a stall at Goodwood, it would be an understatement to say that we were overwhelmed.... The event is truly a spectacle!

That was four years ago and the event just keeps on growing and evolving. Never a dull moment that's for sure.

There are thousands of people that attend this event over the 3 days - most of whom are dressed vintage style. Some are vintage enthusiasts already - whilst others are new and maybe a little unsure of what to wear. At this time of year, we get many phonecalls from ladies asking for assistance on what to wear - so we've put together a few ideas for you.

The event generally covers 1940s to 60s - although there are plenty of other eras covered by vintage enthusiasts. 

Ideas for 60s Enthusiasts

Fancy yourself as Joan from Madmen? The 60s doesn't have to mean mini - check out our grown up glamour options - all limited edition of course:-

1. Queen Bee Dress- early 60s shapely wiggle dress
click here
2. Dolce Vita Dress in Red Rose
click here
(available in many colours and prints)
3. Lucy Dress in sunshine floral
click here

Ideas for 50s Enthusiasts

There's no doubt that 50s is one of the most flattering for all shapes - whether you go for a wiggle pencil style or a full and frothy petticoat - it's all so glam. Take a look at our 50s suggestions....

4. 50s Halter Swing Set -
pair with a chiffon petticoat for volume!
click here
5. Mansfield Dress - wiggle your way through the day
click here
6. 50s Jezebel Dress - pure opulence!
click here

We have a full selection of Goodwood Revival ready outfits on this page for you to peruse:

We will be in the revival market - number 21 - please do come and see us!

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Getting Ready For Twinwood

Twinwood - 29th to 31st August 2015

We are terribly excited about Twinwood! Its one of our favourite 40s & 50s events of the year. So much to see, so much to do and plenty of dancing to be done. Its always wonderful to see so many of our customers both throughout the day in the stall but also out and about in the evening. So many fabulous outfits to see too!

This year, our stall has moved to the main traders area between the arena and the dance tent - not far from the Colonial Club. If you are around on friday night - we are hoping to be open for a few hours so do pop in.

We are bringing our full 40s range plus an extensive sale rail with end of lines and samples - you will be guaranteed to grab a bargain! We have also got some brand new special editions that we are taking along - including the below 40s Whirlaway Swing skirt that we have made especially for the event. Designed with dancing in mind - this skirt has a sweeping skirt, handy front pocket and 4 shell button fastening.

Outfit ideas for Twinwood

If you havent been to Twinwood before - check out the website here: There are still tickets available.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

The quest to find the ultimate tea dress!

We all love a 40s style tea dress - and i think this is because they make the best of almost every figure. 

A well cut tea dress is very flattering for curvy ladies and yet enhancing for those less well endowed. It is certainly my favourite style of dress and i have several in my ever growing vintage collection (blushes).

I think a tea dress needs to be good for dancing in! As a swing dancer myself and knowing many of our customers enjoy a parade round the tea dance floor, I often consider a dancers' needs in designing some of our frocks. A swirling skirt and easy sleeves are a must - plus fabric must be appropriate.

So for years I have been trying to find the best cut. Waist or empire? High neck, tie neck, sweetheart?or a simple darted bodice? I have come to the conclusion that one must have several styles in our wardrobe as there are just too many gorgeous features that simple cant all be included in one ;-)

I have been collecting images and researching, buying originals where possible and have come up with the following definitive list of features that every tea dress from The House of Foxy MUST have:-

1. A demure neckline - never too much cleavage or too low cut. Leave that for the wiggle dresses! 
a 40s original example neckline

2. Gathers/ruching above or under the bust.
There may be a yoke at the shoulder with gathers above the bust, or an under-bust seam with gathers making a more empire shape at the top of the bodice.
I have found a few more simple styles that gather simply into the waist seam.
original example: pleats below bust and into shoulder yokes
3. Fabric MUST be rayon or silk.
Synthetics or cottons don't drape or ruche the same and just dont look right. Prints are important - not too busy as this with disguise the styles lines too much which would be a shame.

Love this original - looks like silk

4. A swing skirt.
Lovely in panels but must skim the hip and create a decent amount of swing (but not a full skirt).

5. A short or cap sleeve.
\We know many of our customers love to dance so we often bear this in mind when designing many of our dresses - we like to be able to raise our arms and then there's the perspiration to think of ;-) So, a small cap, flutter or petal sleeve is perfect for this style of dress

petal sleeve - allows arm to raise 

In our opinion, a tea dress is more demure than wiggle styles - but is the most feminine whether worn Land Girl style with wellies or with a pair of killer heels ;-)

**To see our current tea dress styles - please click here

Our Autumn Tea Dress Styles - coming soon

A new design...

This is a new design we are working on - which adheres to all the above rules.

It is gathered above and below the bust to create a flattering silhouette and gently skims the waist and hip into a 7 panel swing skirt.

It has a higher neckline which is very authentic for the late 30s/early 40s fans amongst you and is in our own exclusive  vintage repro print.

This dress was inspired by this little vintage beauty: 

Also coming soon are shown below:-

Friday, 24 July 2015

Production news! The Jezebel Dress

The Jezebel Dress - so named because it's complete indulgence. 

And because 
this stunning dress has caused a bit of a stir, I decided that a little post about it might be interesting ;-)I always had it in my mind that i wanted to add more 'high end' and perhaps 'indulgent' designs into the collection. We all love something that little bit special and because we make here in the UK, i sometimes allow myself to pursue a few of my fantasies (of the dress kind i assure you of course!)

The lace fabric I found inspired me to design this. It comes in several great colours but i love it most in the canary yellow.

There are 5 metres of lace in each dress - this is because there is so much wastage. We use the scalloped edge of the fabric across the back, the front, the hem and the sleeves.

But i think it's worth it and im sure we will be able to use the odds and ends for other garments in the future.

We showcased this dress for the first time at York Vintage Fair at the end of April and we were pretty surprised that it got such a reaction. Many ladies thought it was an original as our model Ellie strutted her stuff throughout the day. In fact, i was pretty relieved to get the sample back off her ;-)

Ellie in the Jezebel at York Vintage Fair

So - we are frantically working on this dress because we are getting lots of requests for it. Currently we are grading it into the sizes and getting it ready for production. We have redone the under bodice to include some boning for structure and even more fullness to the skirt.

So - herewith the Jezebel dress...ready to order in canary: 

I expect we will do the dress in blue, black and natural in the future as well.

In blue!

C'est fini - for now xx