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Downton Abbey-Inspired Fashions Sweeping the UK

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Here in America, we won't see the second season of Downtown Abbey on our television sets til 2012, but back in the UK, Downton fans are already deep into season two—so deep into season two, in fact, that the show's 20th-century fashions are making something of a comeback in real life. Today's Daily Mail cites astonishing sales figures of Downton-inspired garments and accessories:

Sales of fur capes which were first en vogue nearly a century ago have risen by 220 per cent at High Street store chain Debenhams... The number of elbow-length gloves sold has soared by 584 per cent... Meanwhile, the sales of sequin capelets—a short cape worn over the shoulder have more than doubled.

Marks & Spencer has also noticed the craze. Demand for corsets, pearl earrings and cloche hats has rocketed. Victorian-style boots are back in too, with the chain selling a pair of the shoes every 10 minutes.

Sales of cravats are up 28 per cent at Debenhams and waistcoats, the must-have for all Downton men have also seen a sales spike of 21 per cent... M&S has seen sales of men’s British fabric tweed blazers rise by more than 750 per cent on some styles.

"British Heritage is firmly back in fashion," Tony O'Connor, head of menswear design at Marks & Spencer told the Mail, "and with popular British film, such as the King’s Speech and Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and current dramas such as Downton Abbey growing in popularity, men are confidently wearing classic British Heritage styles."
· Downton Abbey sparks crazy for corsets, cloche hats, cravats [Daily Mail]