Downton Abbey made a stir when it burst onto our screens and then took America by storm too, but it's not just because of the great story lines and amazing cast - the fashion has caught out attention too.
According to Alibaba.com, the online marketplace for small businesses, its website has seen a dramatic year on year increase of 273 per cent in global online searches for vintage dresses, 136 per cent rise in elbow-length glves and 109 per cent uptick in sequin headbands.
The television drama series centres on an aristocratic British family during the period of the First World War, and it is regularly watched by millions of viewers in over 100 countries around the world.
The programme showcases the Best of British fashion a hundred years ago, leading to huge interest in the show’s wardrobe and boosting the vintage clothing industry.
Alibaba.com’s website has also reported a rise in global searches for men’s accessories and clothing with a staggering 617 per cent increase in online searches for top hats and a 427 per cent rise in cravats. Morning suits were also an increasingly popular garment, with a growth of 67 per cent in searches compared to last year.
Molly Morgan, Senior Manager, International Corporate Affairs, Alibaba.com EMEA, says “Period drama clothing and accessories are in fashion, and it is apparently due to a combination of the Royal Wedding, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the very popular Downton Abbey series. We’re even seeing trends of Downton Abbey parties popping up around the world, creating consumer interest and extra sales for small businesses in the vintage clothing industry.”
Other popular items searched on Alibaba.com include:
· Cigarette holders - 538 per cent increase in online searches
· Feather hats - rise of 133 per cent in online searches
· Fascinators - searches have risen by 97 per cent compared to last year