Geek fashion. It’s a growing trend, with the last few years allowing for new and exciting items to don us nerd’s wardrobes. Ten years ago, it would just be the classic geek t-shirt that everyone would wear. But times are now changing.
With the evolution of online stores, wonderful creators from across the globe are now able to showcase their unique items somewhere else than Comic Con. For this post, I’m going to shine a spotlight on a brand making its mark in the geek fashion sector, and that is Prophecy Girl.
Named after Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s first season (because why wouldn’t it be?), Prophecy Girl was launched in 2016 by geek girl fanatic Kirsty Hannam. A graphic designer by trade, Kirsty decided to incorporate her love for sci-fi and fantasy into a brand new business model and brand.
The fashionista behind the brand, Kirsty! Check out her blog on Prophecy Girl
In 2014 the idea came into her head, after she was reminiscing how most of her geeky t-shirts were all in mens fit. “I was out for lunch with my Mum, talking about how hard it was to find geeky clothing for women. Saying it out loud was sort of a light a lightbulb moment.”
Of course, starting an online fashion store isn’t exactly easy. Especially when lots of other competitors are located elsewhere, as Kirsty states. “Most other geek fashion businesses are based in the USA, so I can feel quite out of the loop at times.” Despite this - as well as not having any other prior connections in the fashion industry - Kirsty has managed to build up a dedicated audience with Prophecy Girl, who help to shout about the growing brand.
What people must be aware of however, is that it’s getting harder and harder to exist as a seller that promotes mainly on social media, as Kirsty confirms. “For those of us who started after the major algorithm changes, being seen *at all* is a daily grind; it can feel like shouting into the void!
“Growing the business on social platforms is a very slow process, much slower than I anticipated; I think you just have to keep showing up.”
It’s also about catering to the audiences out there. Prophecy Girl offers a number of items besides the usual staple tees. In lots of social posts, you’ll have seen some other creators (including myself, teehee) donning her range of button-up shirts that are inspired by various fandoms.
The reason I really love these items is because they’re one of the few things that you can actually dress smartly with for work, and still get away with being nerdy! Plus they are silky smooth to wear, like seriously.
The shop also has a range of dresses to choose from, which includes the brand new “Lovely Loony” skater dress, naturally inspired by our darling Luna Lovegood, from the best fandom out there, Harry Potter. (Don’t argue with me on this, I will stupefy you).
Look at the detail on this dress! You could wear it in summer with some sandles, or in Autumn with a pair of tights and knitwear. LOVE IT.
This item also just so happens to be Kirsty’s current favourite. “It’s so easy to wear, and it pretty much encapsulates everything I wanted to achieve with Prophecy Girl: fandom fashion that is actually fashionable, not too 'in your face' but instantly recognisable to fellow fangirls.”
Geek fashion is of course entering the mainstream now, with more and more big brands adopting new fandoms and creating unique pieces of clothing. However, Kirsty thinks that where they lack is knowledge and representation of lesser-known fandoms and characters. Especially female characters. She says, “Independent geek businesses tend to be better at this, as they're fans themselves and more in tune with what other fans want to see.”
Kirsty also confesses that much of her own wardrobe is made up of items from other nerdy indie sellers out there, and it really is a great shout. Sure, it’s easy to go to brands we know. BUT, by going to a unique seller, not only are you getting an item that’s much rarer (ergo more insta-worthy) but it will also be helping out a little guy or gal in their own business venture.
I don’t doubt that there may be some readers out there wondering whether they should start up their own geeky business. And if you are, good for you! But remember, the geek sphere is a large wormhole, and many people have strong opinions, as Kirsty forewarns. “Be aware that what people say they want doesn’t always translate into sales.” So do your research, and make sure you aren't going down the bracket of ‘too niche’.
There are many ways to get started. Online marketplaces like Ebay and Etsy are always a shout, with the latter known for bespoke unique items. Once you’ve got the ball rolling there, try to grab a vendor stand at a convention and set up a website and social handles. That way you’ll be able to physically show off your wares AND network at the same time. Win-win!
The 'Sherlocked Shirt' from Prophecy Girl! (Not sure who this weird woman modelling it is though. Hmm)
Now more than ever is a great time into looking at growing online nerdy businesses. Geek fashion and lifestyle items are through the roof (just you wait for my next blog post, SPOILERS) so there’s a great field to explore. If a store doesn’t float your boat, how about a box subscription service? That way you have monthly deadlines to hit, and can make a variety of items for each one.
And if you’re wondering whether working in this sector will damage your love for all things fandom, then Kirsty has some words of wisdom for you. “Making my passion my job hasn’t diminished my love for any of it!”
So what are you waiting for? Get out your DIY kit, and get creating! In the meantime, I’ll be waiting for payday so I can get that Luna dress. Because she’s just as sane as I am.
Follow Propehcy Girl on all the social channels! Insta, Twitter and Facebook