We love a new design and this season has been no exception with the release of our Louisa trousers. These trousers aren’t just popular with our lovely customers, our team have fallen head over heels too! So this week we’re showing you how our team style their trousers.
This design comes in two styles: high-waisted for a preppy feel or low-waisted for laid-back comfort.
As you know with Emperor’s the possibilities are endless with so many colours, textures & patterns to choose from. We love that we get to create one of a kind clothing that beautifully matches your one of a kind personalities.
We asked Louisa, Geneva, Cecily + Nathalie which fabric they went for and how they are styling their pairs as we head into autumn…
The fabric I chose was originally a curtain from the 1980s. I thought it was unusual and unlikely that anyone else would pick it for trousers. I knew this fabric would go with lots of colours and look great with a clashing print.
I’d say my inspiration for this garment was clown chic! The original curtain had this yellow ruff along the edge which I was tempted to trim the hems with but in the end I decided to go without.
I love the geometric shapes in the pattern of my jumper against the line pattern of the trousers. I chose to wear this pink floral shirt, which is one my favourites so I wear it a lot, because it is the same colour as my hair! In terms of accessories I found these pompoms and made myself some earrings; again they match my hair and also the colours in my trousers. These are my normal trainers – I pretty much only wear sparkly hi-tops.
I got given this beautiful fabric a while ago, I didn’t know what I wanted to make from it until I realised it would be great in this new style of trouser and also perfect autumn/winter wear. I like that it’s black and will go with everything in my wardrobe.
It’s a wool mix which is really convenient as it means I can wash it easily plus it’s also really soft.
What really drew me to this fabric is the subtle but colourful pinstripe. Because it has lots of colours it will go perfectly with lots of different colour tops.
I’ve matched it this pretty green jumper, bright vintage checked scarf, my trusty leather boots and favourite green canvas bag. I love jewel colours, especially for the winter and the green in the trousers goes perfectly with my jumper.
I fell in love with the subtle almost silvery stripes in this vintage navy wool. Navy is one of my colours (I recently had them done with Wilma at WG Image) so I knew the trousers would go with lots of other items in my wardrobe.
I’ve paired it with one of our cute peplum tops with a pastel merry-go-round print. I’ve layered up with a dark grey cardigan & chunky scarf – I love grey!
I know people say not to mix these two colours but I like navy with black. These are my go-to ankle boots, I like rolling up the hems of our trousers and dungarees to show a little bit of ankle.
Whilst I have some loud high-waisted Louisa trousers I went for the low-waisted style for this fabric. This vintage wool is nice + cosy, not at all scratchy, so they will take me into winter.
I opted for a charcoal grey boiled wool for my low-waisted Louisa trousers. I like the fact the fabric is plain so it’s very versatile and goes with everything. It’s also very thick so it’s cosy going into winter.
I particularly love the pockets – they’re essential! I also love the flexibility of this shape so I can choose to turn up the hems or not depending on my outfit. They’re also nice + fitted so there’s no need for a belt and they are a flattering shape. I love that they’re urban but comfortable as I’m normally in jogging bottoms or leggings for work.
I’ve matched them with my soft green jumper and mustard linen shoulder bag. Charcoal is a good colour to match with loads of colours & I’m trying to get away from wearing so much black so these tick all the boxes!
Shop our current Louisa trouser collection online now.
You can find a selection of our high-waisted Louisas at both our Brighton stockist Flock + at our colourful Edinburgh stockist Godiva. And of course you can design your own with us! Simply decide between low or high-waisted, pick your fabric from our current studio collection (or provide your own) + get ready to strut your stuff this season.
We love collaborating with other talented female businesses and WG Image is no exception. We’re excited to be teaming up with Wilma of WG Image this season combining her personal styling consultancy to our bespoke tailoring services.
We met Wilma when she was shopping at our Brighton stockist Flock and immediately loved the way she was styling her Emperor’s garments. Wilma has already changed the way I approach my wardrobe after our colour analysis session and I knew I wanted you – our clients – to reap the benefits from her expertise too.
Let’s find out more about Wilma:
What is your background + how did you become a personal stylist & image consultant?
Hi! My name is Wilma and I am the proud owner of WG Image Style Consultancy.
My previous job involved travelling all over the world which inspired my creative expression, interest in people and the varying styles in different countries along within their cultures, traditions and appearance. I have always had an interest and passion in personal style and being Italian it is probably in my genes, it made sense to combine my natural skill in relating to others making people feel confident in how they dress.
My services include: Colour Analysis, Style Consultation, Wardrobe Editing and Management along with Personal Shopping locally and further afield, depending on the client’s preferred choice of destination.
What aspect do you love most about your job?
What I love most about my job is that I can actually make someone really happy! It’s that smile of confidence I can see on my clients face by knowing their perfect colour match, what suits their body shape best and enhances their uniqueness.
I take the guesswork out of the equation when shopping, save them money and precious time.
What is the importance/value of knowing what colours and styles suit you best?
To me it is the simplicity of knowing you will look good, fresh and healthy in your best colour matches even without make up, knowing your body shape and style is equally as important and will avoid you being worn by your clothes, to the contrary, your personal style is portrayed by you wearing the garment.
What is your personal style?
Ha! My personal style, not sure I want to give that away!? Only joking. My personal style definitely falls under EFFORTLESS CHIC!!!
I am a huge fan of classic smart with a hint of rock to it. I love a trouser suit in heels and junky jewellery. But then I also like wearing it with trainers.
Can you tell us about a favourite experience that you’ve had working with a client?
Yes, absolutely! I guess I am very lucky being able to make someone’s life a lot easier when it comes to clothes. They all seem to turn into wonderful experiences each one of them.
It is a very personal service, you start building a “clothes” relationship with the client. We all wear clothes, every day, and by adding that spark of joy to their wardrobe it takes away one less worry: Will it fit? Is this the right colour for me? Will it go with the rest of my wardrobe?
Being able to boost someone’s confidence helping them how they dress makes it a favourite experience each time!
What are you looking forward to in the collaboration with us?
I am a big fan of Cecily’s work and have taken clients to The Emperor’s Old Clothes several times before with great results.
Being able to fuse our talents and passion together with the understanding of our clients needs will yield stunning results!
Appointments are very limited so book now to avoid disappointment!
It’s #zerowasteweek 3-9th September. Cutting out waste and living more consciously has been a hot topic for a while now and affects every area of life from your kitchen to your wardrobe.
We’ve teamed up with the wonderful Emily owner of Brighton-based fashion label Zola Amour to discuss fabric waste in the fashion industry and what small brands like us are doing to fight it.
Each of us also reveal exciting new fabric ‘scrap’ projects launching this week!
We’d love to hear how you are reducing waste in your wardrobe and buying habits.
Tag us on instagram @emperorscloth & @zolaamouruk so we can see what you’re up to.
Emperor’s team members Cecily & Louisa have recently launched a feminist platform called Sister Society. Lou sat down with them to find out how it started & what it’s all about:
How did you meet?
Cecily: We first met when Louisa was working in a fabric shop and I used to come in all the time, because I was in the early stages of building The Emperor’s Old Clothes.
Louisa: We started chatting to each other.
Cecily: Yep, she was always very smiley with colourful hair so she was quite distinctive! And then we did a short business course together.
Louisa: Oh yeah!
Cecily: So we got to know each other much more through that experience because it was quite a small group, and we became friends, and the rest is history! Louisa came to start, once The Emperor’s Old Clothes became full time thing, Louisa started working for me.
Louisa: One day every so often, and then it became more and more regular, and now I’m doing three days a week.
So, tell me how did Sister Society come about?
Cecily: Well I found that I kept meeting up with women whether it was through work or friends, family and I kept having these conversations about the state of society today and women’s issues – we often have them in the studio as well – and then I came in one day and me and Louisa were basically having a rant I think…
Louisa: Yeah, we were basically having a one of our normal conversations about women’s issues or something, and then we said; “Oh we should to make a club or a gang or something. And then we were like actually we probably should do that…”.
So was there a specific event that catalysed Sister Society?
Cecily: Honestly not really, I think it was a build up of lots of small conversations – you probably shouldn’t call them small conversations – here and there, about big issues. I think there was a sense of restlessness and things not being resolved, so that these conversations kept happening and nothing was happening, and I think we were both feeling quite frustrated about it.
So, what is the mission of Sister Society? Could you describe it in short and also term goals?
Louisa: I think my mission would be to build awareness and help with lots of different social causes, like the period poverty situation, and homelessness, and people in Calais. To bring more awareness to those things would be important to me.
Cecily: So kind of like fundraising and activism is more what is driving you, isn’t it?
Louisa: Yeah, activism, and on a day-to-day basis I think just having a safe space where people can talk about things and support each other.
Cecily: Yeah, we had quite a lot of meetings and conversations before we really nailed down exactly what Sister Society was going to be and what our mission was and we came up with four things that we wanted to achieve; which was to empower, to support, to engage and to create. There is quite a lot of information about this on our website, but basically it’s all about bringing females together, like Louisa said ‘that safe space’, but to really be pro-active within that.
Louisa: Yeah, absolutely to do something about it, not to just keep having these conversations, but do something.
Cecily: And to break all those things down into small actions: if we can get a lot of people together and they each participate in those small actions…
Louisa: Or clicktivism
Cecily: Yeah clicktivism, then we can create a bigger change.
What is clicktivism?
Louisa: It’s basically activism online, so clicking, liking, sharing posts. So even by liking a post you obviously get more visibility on algorythms, so if everyone just liked a post or signed a petition or shared a post. Clicktivism is a massive thing now. For example there was Annika George who started the period poverty awareness. She was at school and she got all of her friends to share this post about period poverty and that started a petition that then went to parliament. Clicktivism is massive now, just clicking and sharing stuff is a form of activism, it’s the new generation of activism.
Cecily: I think people see it as quite a passive activity but actually it does have an impact.
Louisa: Yeah, it’s really good. So even if you don’t want to be an activist and like physically go with placard and be there, you can share things and that’s just as important.
Cecily: I think in terms of short term and long term…
Louisa: Bringing down the patriarchy!
Cecily: There is that!
Cecily: I think to be honest our short-term goals were quite small.
Louisa: Mine were tiny! Mine were like “If five people talk about this, that would be amazing!” So for me we’ve already blow away my expectations of what it could be, so I think, yeah short term…
Cecily: Short term it was to get as many local females, feminists, who were interested in things we were talking about together. Whether that was just digitally for now, and then for a meet up. Then get involved with a local charity or community project and start making an impact and I think we’ve already achieved both of those things.
Louisa: Yeah absolutely!
Cecily: So now it’s about building on that work to see how much of an impact we can make longer term.
That leads me onto the next question which is that had your first event recently, how did it go?
Louisa: Yeah so it was a meet up at My Hotel, basically so that we could just introduce ourselves and introduce people to The Red Box Project.
Cecily: The Red Box Project is the project that we’ve teamed up with and that we are supporting as a platform.
Question: And did you get many donations?
Louisa: I was expecting like three people to come along, but you said there was about forty people!
Cecily: Yeah over the whole evening we had about forty people come along, everyone did bring donations of tampon and sanitary towels. We filled up 4 boxes for The Red Box Project which basically covers four schools for a month which is fantastic! It was really great because some of the women are came are really integral to Sister Society and the projects that we’ve got going on. We had Emma from The Red Box Project and Jodie who’s the photographer who is going to be taking on our Modern Feminist Photo-series. We had lots of wonderful family and friends too, but we also had people we didn’t know at all.
Louisa: Yeah that was amazing!
Cecily: That was fantastic because it showed that the message is getting out there by people liking and sharing and that we have got stuff to build on really.
You are specifically looking to partner with businesses, what are the benefits for local businesses?
Cecily: You can become a partner to Sister Society and that really is an acknowledgement that you have got equality and the betterment of women at the core of what you’re doing. That your ethics are in line with the message that we’re putting out there and you want to support the work that we’re doing. It’s not for profit. We’re doing this for free.
Louisa: It’s completely voluntary.
Cecily: My business The Emperor’s Old Clothes is one of the key partners of Sister Society so that means that we’ve set up a Red Box at our place of work which is based at Flock on Sydney Street and we are generally supporting Sister Society running costs as well. It’s a team effort which is great!
Louisa: So I’m a freelance seamstress. I work for Cecily and I also own a small business called Hey Kitsch Kitty making festival wear and I’m a co-founder of Sister Society. As a key partner Hey Kitsch Kitty is going to be donating pieces to The Red Collection and designing pieces for the catwalk.
Cecily: I think it’s important to point out that we are using our skill-sets as seamstresses for things like running this upcoming workshop. So we are donating our time and skills and that is what we are trying to encourage other people to do so with their skills. Everyone who is involved is donating their services and offering their time and skills for free. We wanted to make it accessible not just to big businesses like My Hotel, which are really kindly offering us event space, but all the way down to small one-person businesses. Whether they want to get involved by offering their services, or blogging about what we’re doing, or setting up a drop off location.
Louisa: So via our partnership with The Red Box Project a business can sponsor a Red Box, for £40 they can buy a red box and fill it and that goes to a new school.
Cecily: If you’ve got more a budget for this kind of thing and you really want to get stuck in you can sponsor a box monthly – £40 a month keeps a box fully stocked up and that will serve a whole school every month. Or if you really want to get involved but you don’t have that kind of budget behind you then you can get a new box set up. That box will rely on donations from the public which are collecting at our drop-off locations. If £40 is too much for your small business then there are other ways you can get involved. For instance, you can have a tampon and sanitary towel donation box at your business.
Louisa: Yes, it’s a completely free thing that you can have.
Cecily: So then your team members, or your customers or the public can then drop off their donations and The Red Box Project will come and collect them and take them to schools.
Louisa: There is also an Amazon Wishlist – you can go onto the amazon wish list and buy some tampons and other things they need and have that sent to them.
Cecily: There is a link to that on the Red Box Project page on our website
Louisa: Or you can bring tampons into Flock. Students at Iyengar Yoga in the Mews in Hove can leave their donations there and Sew Retro sewing students can donate when they come to classes.
Cecily: Those are just some of the ways businesses can get involved, but really it’s just about showing you that you care about equality and that that is something that you want to shout about as an individual but also as a business. Aligning yourself with us is a great way to do that
Louisa: And you get your logo on our website
Cecily: It doesn’t get much bigger than that!
Cecily: We are also offering a Patron scheme. So if individuals want to get involved with any of the things we were just talking about, either they can do it and be named or do it anonymously. Head to the About Us page of our website and go to Patrons then you can find out more about that. As much support as we can gather for The Red Box Project and our other projects the better for everyone!
What events have you got planned for later on in the year?
Cecily: We’ve got our next social on 5th September again at My Hotel in Brighton, 6:30-8pm. Assuming all goes ahead we’ve got an amazing speaker for that so we are really excited about that and we are beginning to get the word out now. And then week before that we have our first workshop.
Louisa: Yep, which is a ‘reusable sanitary towel workshop’ at the Sew Fabulous studio in The Open Market and it’s completely booked up! There was a lot of interest in that so I think we might potentially run another one.
Cecily: Yeah we’re going to see how it goes
Louisa: It’s the first one…
Cecily: So that’s a free workshop and it’s really important for us to make it as inclusive and accessible as possible. We’re asking for a small donation towards materials if you can afford it, but we’re trying to keep our events completely free, where possible. And then the other big one that is on the horizon that we don’t have a huge amount for details for yet….
Louisa: We’ve got lots of exciting plans.
Cecily: The Red Collection Fundraiser for The Red Box Project which is going to be a fashion show and charity event. So we definitely want to get involved with local designers, makers, in fact that they don’t need to be local, female designers, makers, models, photographers.
Louisa: Make-up artists…
How can people get involved?
Cecily: I’d say the best thing to do is to check out our website because there is loads of information about all the things that we’ve got going on on there and then to send us an email or drop us a message on Instagram @sistersocietyuk. We’re online! You can find us but we can send you more information and see how we can get you involved. We really want as many women to get involved as possible, even if you think that you might not have the particular skill set we’re looking for there is loads more stuff you can get involved with behind the scenes.
Louisa: We’ll try and help you get involved
Want to get involved or find out more? Check out the Sister Society website
Do you know how to take your body measurements?
We’ve been at this handmade clothing game for quite a while now and time and again customers have the same dilemma: they are a different size in every place they shop. Are you a size 8 in one shop and a size 12 in another? It’s a minefield.
This is where the beauty of tailoring comes in. With our ‘Design your own’ service you get to pick from our garment designs, our gallery of fabric and have clothing made to your measurements that fit like a glove.
Love the idea but unconfident about having to take and send us your measurements? No problem! Simply grab a friend and follow the steps in our easy ‘How to take your body measurements’ guide:
Let’s break this down.
What kind of garment are you interested in?
Some of our wonderful customers like us to have all their measurements on file so they can shop across the collection in the knowledge we’ll adjust garments where needed to make sure they get that perfect fit.
If that’s you then follow the whole video and record all the measurements.
If you’re just interested in one garment type use this handy chart to see which measurements we need from you:
How to take your body measurements guide in pictures
How to take your bust measurement:
1. Lift your arms and pass the tape measure around your back to meet at the front.
2. You want to make sure the tape measure is level all the way around the body in line with the nipple line.
3. Record the number of centimetres where the tape measure meets – this is your bust measurement.
How to take your waist measurement:
1. Your waist is the narrowest point in your torso. It’s helpful to pull your top to be tight against the body so you can locate the narrowest point. Pass the tape measure around your back to meet at the front level with this narrowest point.
2. Record the number of centimetres where the tape measure meets – this is your waist measurement.
How to take your hips measurement:
1. Your hip measurement is taken at the widest point of the bottom half of your body. It’s helpful to pull your trousers or skirt to be tight against the body so you can locate this widest point.
Pass the tape measure around your back to meet at the front level with this widest point.
2. You want to make sure the tape measure is level all the way around the body.
3. Record the number of centimetres where the tape measure meets – this is your hips measurement.
How to take your skirt length measurement:
1. We start the skirt length measurement from the waist as most of our designs are high-waisted. Locate your waistline which is the narrowest part of your torso: it’s helpful to pull your top to be tight against the body so you can locate the narrowest point.
2. Place the tape measure at your waistline and measure down the leg until you find the point at which you want your skirt to end.
A mini-skirt may finish above the knee whilst a pencil skirt traditionally finishes just below the knee.
Remember it’s up to you how long you want the length of your skirt to be!
We can always take a skirt hem up to make your skirt shorter but it’s far trickier to make a skirt longer so if you’re unsure it’s always safer to measure a little longer than shorter.
How to take your trouser length measurement:
1. We start the trouser length measurement from the waist as most of our designs are high-waisted. Locate your waistline which is the narrowest part of your torso: it’s helpful to pull your top to be tight against the body so you can locate the narrowest point.
2. Place the tape measure at your waistline and measure down the leg until you find the point at which you want your trouser leg to end.
Remember it’s up to you how long you want the length of your trousers to be!
We can always take a trouser hem up to make them shorter but it’s far trickier to make a trouser leg longer so if you’re unsure it’s always safer to measure a little longer than shorter.
How to take your sleeve measurement:
We offer three types of sleeve length.
1. Place the end of the tape measure at the edge of your shoulder – just before where it starts to slope down.
2. Measure to where you would like your short sleeve to finish on your arm. Typically this is about one third of the way down the upper part of the arm.
Three quarter length sleeves:
1. Place the end of the tape measure at the edge of your shoulder – just before where it starts to slope down.
2. Measure to where you would like your three quarter length sleeve to finish on your arm. Typically this is about 5cm lower than your elbow.
Full length sleeves:
1. Place the end of the tape measure at the edge of your shoulder – just before where it starts to slope down.
2. Measure to where you would like your full length sleeve to finish on your arm. Typically this is at the top of your hand.
When you’ve taken your measurements and you’re ready to get designing head to our Design Your Own page to pick your garment style, fabric and fill out the design form.