Your shop sounds like it could be right up my daughters street.
She is a Jazz and Blues singer and her influences are from the 1940’s. She is always looking for stage clothes and day and evening wear. I’ll let her know.
Vivien of Holloway
294 Holloway Road, London N7 6NJ
- Holloway Road Station (0.1 km)
- Arsenal Underground Station (0.8 km)
- Caledonian Road & Barnsbury Station (0.7 km)
- Contact us:
020 7609 8754
Contact via email
- Opening hours:
Monday to Saturday 10-6pm Sunday 11-5
29 reviews of Vivien of Holloway in English
i thought it may be too young for me but it isn't, it fits like a glove, I bought size 12 , I'm usually a 10 but knew I'd have to go up a size, the 12 is to fit a 26in waist, mine is 27, so was worried it wouldn't fit.
I did ring the shop as I live in Cornwall, so too far to just pop in to the shop.
The lady I spoke to was very helpful and polite and took time to talk about the right size.
Cant wait to wear this in August, it's a beautiful dress and is so femine, love it.
Would recommend to anyone.
At today's dress prices, these are very fair, could fault it.
Winner of Best London based Repro Brand 2 years running!!
We have been brightening up the world of fashion for over 20 years with reproduction 40’s & 50’s clothing. Our dresses are available from our shop in Camden but we also have an internet shop and an Ebay shop. We also wholesale all over the world to various shops.
Vintage of the future with an essence of the past.
We have had plenty of press recently with the likes of Charlotte Church and Nigella Lawson gracing the covers of your favourite magazines sporting our dresses. Music favourites from Kate Nash to legends Led Zepelin have also been spotted in our designs.
Comment 1 comment on this review
soulscape100, 20 July 2008:
Your shop sounds like it could be right up my daughters street.
Often Vintage Repro sellers sell older merchandise, sale items or returns to move stock on other websites than their main one. I'm often looking for bargains and auctions in this regard. Yet only FOUR days after I purchased a dress at FULL price from Vivien of Holloway (£89 plus £15 for shipping to California where I was on holiday for a total of £104) the EXACT same style and size dress appeared for a £18 including international shipping on another website being sold officially by Vivien of Holloway. Please note that this was not an older stock dress or damaged nor was it an item that she was in excess off, but instead a “limited edition dress” that had been selling at FULL price that same WEEK. I was shocked and politely asked for some kind partial refund or even a discount on a future purchase (anything) but no, Vivien spouted off this bizarre policy of how "that has nothing to do with us” and “that's a different department altogether”. Of course one only has to look at the other place online she alternately sells her stock and see that she is 100% responsible for the content. I was offered to return it but as I was still on holiday and to meet the 14 day return period I'd have needed to spend close to 30£ for recorded international delivery (shipping from the US is astronomical), leaving me almost 45£ in the hole for shipping which is unacceptable. As a customer I was offered nothing-not even an apology.
"Had you not seen the item elsewhere you would of been perfectly happy like hundreds of other customers.” I was told. I find this arrogant and most telling. VOH seems to have forgotten that many of us who shop for vintage reproduction and vintage clothing are on online every day trying to save money in a tight economy. Off of her main site, I've seen her sell nothing but dead stock, older items and junky sale clothing -never anything that was selling full price on the floor earlier that same WEEK. The shipping fee was a blatant rip off. I was told that the whopping £15 for shipping was due to a mandatory “signed confirmation policy” which was actually marked “no” and NEVER signed for as I found the package crammed in our tiny post box.
As for the product itself, the swing dress is very poorly made with a non-adjustable halter neck which I found painful even simply trying on. It is also not a true vintage reproduction and closer to a fancy dress
costume. I found much of the other clothing like the trousers, day dresses and jeans to be very cut matronly as well with fabrics ranging from nice to very low quality. This is
evidenced by the tall pretty brunette model with the Jane Russell vibe
that VOH uses on her website. The VOH swing dress does nothing for her
Amazonian figure and shoulders apart from putting two stone and two
decades on visually. Do give Vivien of
Holloway a miss if you're on the fence and look elsewhere. If you buy VOH clothing off their main site, you may want to go over the stock on her website beforehand and vice versa to
make sure you're getting a fair deal and don't hesitate to speak up if
the same thing happens to you. It is nice to see that she has so many loyal fans though. Clothing that fits well is hard to find right off the rack but I found her work and customer service approach extremely low quality compared to nearly all other UK and US made vintage reproduction lines out there.
The staff were patient and very professional while myself and two friends spent over three hours squealing, giggling and trying on everything in our sizes- in fact they suggested more things to try on and different combinations, where in any other shop we would have been ignored, if not hastily ejected.
I own a growing collection of VoH clothing now, and every time i'm wearing one of their pieces, I get nothing but compliments and people asking where the clothes are from. Maybe i'm lucky to have more of an hourglass shape, but their sizes fit me like a glove and are the ultimate in flattering. The bodices are secure but not restrictive, and the pencil skirts, even though a non stretch material, are the same.
Plus, i'm trying to buy sweatshop free clothing, and VoH are made in England so I can be somewhat guilt free in my purchases. Some people have complained about prices. Well, since they're being made in the UK and not mass produced in a factory in a developing country they're not exactly going to be Primark cheap. I like to call them "investments".
They're great. I'm addicted. They can do no wrong.
I have met Vivien once before and was very taken aback with how involved she still is. She frequently takes time to reply to her customers and fans, answering questions and thanking people for their support...even wishing them a happy birthday.
I would highly recommend popping into her beautiful shop for the full VoH experience. The staff are all very helpful and know their stuff and considering all the clothes are made in London etc I think the prices are very reasonable.
VIVA VOH <3
Reviewed using Android. Get the app
I was dieting at the time and was so gutted when it became too loose on the bust, but I went on to buy 3 more dresses in my new smaller size which I love just as much. I also have 2 of the halter-neck tops which are fab with pencil skirts or skinny jeans. Also 3 boleros, 2 waist belts and a red petticoat.
I did treat myself to the blue Anchors pencil dress for my 30th birthday night out, unfortunately I only wore it the once as it wasn't as flattering on me, I am top heavy with hips 1-2 dress sizes smaller, so there was too much excess material in the hip area to be flattering, but that is just my shape. I would LOVE the same pattern in the swing dress, but my size (38 bust, 30 waist) is never in stock when I have the money spare :(
The dresses seem to have gone up in price a lot since I bought my first one in 2008 for £59 though, I would also love some more petticoats and belts but can't justify it, so wear my red one with all 3 dresses.
I agree sometimes delivery times can be hit and miss, sometimes I will recieve my order the next day, others it's over a week. My hubby ordered me a top for my birthday, 10 days in advance, but it took 13 days to arrive.
Customer service is mostly positive, as shown by my replacement dress incident, my only slight negative is that I had chosen a VOH dress for my bridesmaid but the design we loved wasn't in stock in her size. I emaiiled to find out if more were being made and if I could pay more for a "rush" order if so (even though we had 3 months to go) but was just told repeatedly "we do not know if this is being restocked" which didn't really answer my question definitively. We ended up ordering a different one, but we just didn't LOVE it, so she wore something else entirely.
Reviewed using iPhone. Get the app
I only wish I had the balls to wear my beautiful dresses out more. Not that that will stop me from finding any excuse to get a new one.
All i can say is .. I'll be back.
Superb service (helpful, engaging, warm).
loved the dresses ... bought one ... and love it.
Would love to have had a larger selection for my size - but that is the same everywhere for me in Vintage sizings.
Lo and behold, when you zoom in on the bodice of ALL the dresses where there are panels, every panel is mismatched with the next! Polkas and patterns beginning/ending/partway disappearing as soon as the panel comes to an end. Amazing! £89 brand new yet the effort that has gone into creating the dresses is minimal.
So..VoH...please, please PLEASE, for the sake of us vintage beauty wannabes everywhere, please ask your dressmakers to pay more attention to the detail because, when paying £89 + for an item, you expect the garment to be perfect.
PS: I cannot believe this issue hasn't been raised before!
Comment 1 comment on this review
ReproReviewer, 23 June 2012:
WELL SAID. Some of the VOH fabrics can be easily found on high street stalls and frankly are not worth the money. The overall dress design is unflattering because the natural waist is too high and the halter immobile. A true boned “bodice” from the 50’s has it taken down to the torso to pull the waist in.
i have just recieved my second VoH dress today throught the post, and like the first it is so beautiful, i love the way the dresses flatter my more curvy figure, so many dresses on the high street dont allow for boobs and hips!……..unlike some of the reviews on here on the two occasions i have dealt with the shop staff over the phone i have found them incredibly helpful and polite, they rushed my order through as its for a xmas party….and they even rang me back to confirm the dress was on its way(think the ladies name was Alice-first class service!)
will definately be ordering more dresses, they make me feel good and im worth it ;) ive never recieved as many compliments as when i wore my VoH dress to an imelda may gig, cant recommend them highly enough
IVE BEEN THINKING ABOUT ORDERING ONE OF THESE BEAUTIFUL DRESSES FOR MONTHS, FINALY I TOOK MY MEASUREMENTS AND ORDERED THE PINK ONE WITH THE WHITE HEARTS AND A WHITE PETTICOAT, I WAS A LITTLE SCARED INCASE IT DIDNT FIT, THE PETTICOAT CAME FIRST WHEN I TOOK IT OUT THE BAG IT WAS SO BEAUTIFUL LIKE A WHITE FLUFFY CLOUD, THEN THE DRESS CAME AND IT FIT LIKE A GLOVE, NEVER BEFORE HAVE I FELT SO DRESSED UP, I NOW HAVE TWO VIVIEN OF HOLLOWAY DRESSES, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO HAVING A THIRD, AFTER WEARING ONE OF THESE DRESSES I WOULDNT WEAR ANYTHING ELSE, IVE RANG THE SHOP IN LONDON ON A FEW OCCASIONS AND THE GIRLS THERE ARE ALWAYS POLITE AND HELPFULL, MY ADVICE IS DONT LISTEN TO OTHER PEOPLE JUST JUMP WITH BOTH FEET AND GET ONE OF THESE FABLOUSE DRESSES
Was rather disappointed with the postage and packaging from Vivien of Holloway. I received the dress screwed up in a jiffy bag with no extra protection or even a layer of tissue paper for presentation...after all they're not the cheapest dresses around. I've received better parcel packaging from Ebay! I phoned up to ask if this was the norm, and was told it was.
Other than that, gorgeous clothes and the dress I bought online fit really well.
A great shop with very unique clothing, sadly the customer service is appauling, the staff are verging on rude and if you're thinking of ordering online expect it to take forever to arrive. I personally put up with all that because the clothing is so nice, but I wish that they would improve things a little. Every time I order I find it extremely annoying, and have heard every excuse under the sun about this.
My suggestions? If you can, go to the shop. Then you will walk out with a dress you love... I'd buy everything in the shop if I could. Avoid the mail order unless you don't need the dress for a looooooong time!
Ordered one of the gorgeous halterneck 50's dresses with the bolero jacket. All ordering done online (I live in Scotland!!). Had never heard of Viviene of Holloway until I saw one of the dresses on the "Good Morning|" show and it looked stunning. Yes indeed the sizes are NOT the average high street sizes, but if you read the sizing guidance on the website it directs you exactly how to measure yourself. I went with the waist size being perfect which in turn has meant that I have to get the bust area taken in a bit. However it's well worth it, I have purchased the dress for a wedding, and can't wait to wear it!
I would happily buy another, and would recommend the site. The dresses are flattering and well made (a good thick cotton material instead of flimsy material). Thank you......from one happy customer!
I've always thought that Vivien of Holloway sold fabulous clothing so it was a very easy decision when it came to choosing my wedding dress from them.
I'd never had problems with their clothing before as it's simply fabulous. Great cuts, fabrics and choice.
During a trip to London I decided to make a bee-line to their store as I'd never been and had always fancied trying on their pretty frocks.
I was also excited to visit the store as their website was advertising their sale, so I was hoping to bag a bargain or two.
I managed to save some money and took the long train journey down to visit the London store.
After looking around their tidy and good looking shop I could not spot the sale items they had been advertised online, so I asked a member of staff where I might be able to find them. I was told, in a matter of fact way, that the sale in an online exclusive and not in store. No apology. Just said that they hoped I hadn't travelled so far just to see their sale.... awkward silence follows before the member of staff blanks me and pretends I'm not stood in front of her.
Now, I'm not sure how or where the stock is stored in their shop but if it had have been in the back room (their stock room) could it not have been possible to make an allowance and let me purchase the dress I wanted in store? I have to admit after the coldness and the matter of fact attitude from this member of staff I was afraid to ask and instead got my phone out and ordered the dress right there and then in the store, paying the £3 postage (which is much cheaper than a return train ticket from the North to London's King Cross!)
Another thing I learned from visiting the store was that they don't seem to stock a lot of my size. I was disappointed by this as they had dresses I wanted to purchase, just not in my size though they did have them to buy online in my size.
I would have asked the staff for help but I had the impression that another one of my silly questions would annoy them; especially since one of the ladies were getting their lunch and the other was too busy with a customer who claimed to be a Burlesque performer. I wonder if I had have mentioned my burlesque status I would have received the same treatment!? Hmmmm, who knows?!
I wasn't going to let this experience stop me from making a purchase, as I actually needed the dress for an event I was attending during the weekend in London. I settled on a dress and went to the counter to pay.
The member of staff who served me made no effort to make conversation with me so I decided to try by complimenting on one of the gorgeous hair flowers that was on the counter. I was told that I could purchase it since the other customer had changed her mind with wanting to buy it. I said I may have to treat myself to one but maybe one that was a different colour. (I hadn't actually commited myself to the flower hair clip!) I then tried to make conversation with the same member of staff by telling her that I loved the clothing from the shop and how I'd wore their design on my wedding day etc. She clearly wasn't interested or listening (fair enough but at least try as it's polite!) and interrupted me to tell me I needed to decide what colour flower clip I wanted for my hair as it was time to pay.
So basically folks, I think I'll stick to ordering their fab clothing online as visiting their store left me feeling a little more than disappointed. I felt like a blooming inconvenience! I really don't know why I wasted my time being so polite to the staff as they were the ones who should have been polite to me, especially if they wanted me to spend my cash!
Great online store, great dresses and outfits just rather strange staff.
vivienofholloway, 23 March 2011:
I cannot comment on how busy the staff were or not on your visit as you do not say what day you visited but The sale in an online sale which I believe it states on the website. The online sale was for those customers who have been unable to visit for our other sales. Our warehouse is actually about 5 miles from our shop we do not have space for a stockroom. I am sorry things didn't work out the way you imagined. I think people have a set idea of how our business runs our store gets massively busy and the girls do work very hard. Obviously lunchtimes are particularly difficult. Luckily our sizes don't vary much so you can happily order online. Our store gets deliveries every other day so apart from the sale stock everything online is usually in the store.
TRivero, 2 December 2012:
Hi Vivienne. We just spent £750 on a large order for a wedding party at your store, and the dresses are amazing and pretty much sell themselves, but I have to say that the staff where not helpful and actually verging on rude. The bride didn’t get much help when choosing her accessories. Actually thats not fair, on the first visit Arlette was great and very helpful and spent a lot of time with us, but then the bride had a wobble and wanted to change her dress and we came back in on a sat and the bride was pretty much ignored. She had to ask 3 times for a petticoat, I had to help her zip up all the dresses and give her feedback, no one gave her any advice at all. Considering the occasion and the fact that we spending such a large amount I would have liked a better service for her. Shopping for your wedding dress should be a special occasion. She made a snap decision in the end but I think we might have spent more had we had a bit more guidance on the second visit. She only tried on one colour petticoat for example and I think she might have bought a extra white bolero and I would have got another petticoat and accessories had anyone had the time to give us some attention!
vivienofholloway, 5 December 2012:
I am very sorry about that I am looking into What went wrong for you. We do ask that brides book a slot so that we can arrange to give them the extra special attention they like especially on Saturdays as we are not a bridal shop and get very busy.
I cannot comment on your particular case but Be assured I will look into what might have caused the problem.
Thank you for your feedback
TRivero, 5 December 2012:
Thanks for your quick reply. Well thats fair enough really, we did have an apt the first time and as I say Arlette was great, and we didn’t have one the second time and the shop was busy. Those dresses just fly off the shelves! I have just been back to exchange something and the girls where very helpful so perhaps it was just a bad time, and not booking a wedding slot. Thanks for getting back to me.
vivienofholloway, 5 December 2012:
My pleasure I am glad they have won you back they do work very hard.
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