THE HERITAGE of ARISTOC
The first advertisement for Aristoc stockings appearing in 1926 with the company's books showing increasing expenditure on advertising from then onwards. For several years the factory worked three shifts covering twenty hours each day and many developments took place which are no taken for granted.
The company name changed from A E Allen to Aristoc Ltd and the company became a public one.
Nylon was introduced into stockings in the 1940's which incorporated strength and stretch benefits.
The first seam free machines were delivered into Langley Mill and started the production of two styles, one of which is still available today, the 30 denier Grosvenor and Mystique (advertised below). Demand for both styles was unprecedented with representatives taking orders in one week for
one months production, often collecting production from the factory to take directly into stores.
It was decided to present hosiery as a fashion item, sold as an accessory rather than a leg covering.
New style packaging was introduced to give a clean uncluttered look to the hosiery fixture. The 1980’s saw power dressing but with some significant interest in legwear. Aristoc developed the market for patterned tights, bows and colours.
Into the 1990’s and the manufacturing plant was transferred to West Mill, Belper- Derbyshire.
The early 1990’s saw the launch of the first TV advertising campaign.
In 1995, a major marketing project was launched to strengthen the brand image. Aristoc became a brand for young women, making hosiery easy enough to shop in packaging which communicated the brand and product values.
1998 also saw Melanie Sykes launched as the “Legs of Aristoc” in a PR partnership, that created a huge interest in Aristoc with the press hungry for the fabulous steamy shots of Melanie,feminine, feisty, fun and fashionable . Melanie epitomises the brand personality with a regular slot on TV , she had come a long way from the her first big break when she fronted the
The move in 2000 into seam free lingerie the most exiting product launch ever for Aristoc. Although Aristoc has traditionally been a hosiery company, this was in-fact a natural progression.
The design and technology of the products were unique, and thoroughly researched offering comfortable shaping and control.
Spring 2000 and English National Ballet are used to present the Aristoc Wedding Collection which encompasses hosiery for all of the wedding party. Keepsake gift packaging was created, together with a competition to win a luxury weekend in London to see Swan Lake.
Moving into 2001and another exciting year. Soleil, a one stop shop for summer hosiery, with innovative products and exiting new finishes, a full range of shades to complement every skin tone completes the offer. September 2001 and fishnets are huge, the
successful movie launch of the year Moulin Rouge has women clambering to buy fashion nets to accessorise. This has a huge impact on the industry when once again hosiery has become a fashion ‘must have’ and an everyday wear purchase.
2002 and an exiting year ahead, fishnets are key. Due to the success of Moulin Rouge the huge film for 2002 editors are using Aristoc for product placement. Wonderbum hits the shelves and Aristoc launches Leg Candy. Fashion products for young and old to target
those who love to wear trousers, but still want to highlight ankles.
Stockings and hold ups see an increase in sales with the retro look appearing through clothing trends, John Swannell is invited to create a ‘boudoir’ feel to the Sensuous range extended for Autumn.
When approached by Rod Stewart, in Autumn 2004, to supply products for the cast of the West End Musical “Tonight’s the Night”, the brand one again saw an opportunity to stretch the marketing budget and interact with consumers on a more personal level. By working with Emma lead dancer from the show, a range of Aristoc promotional shots were created to use with the press and in store.
As dance fever swept the nation Aristoc saw an opportunity to ride this wave and link up with the most influential of these, BBC’s phenomenally successful Strictly Come Dancing star Camilla Dallerup. Featuring on packaging and in-store, she created a real stir dancing with the gorgeous car mechanic from Coronation Street (Ray Phelan).
The launch of the new Bodytoners range, with unprecedented coverage in the press for the Hourglass Toner, made many London stores report waiting lists as the whole seasons stock was sold out overnight. By making a shrewd investment during the early part of 2007 Gok Wan was secured to act as brand ambassador for the range. With his fantastic styling credentials & a real empathy with women he was the perfect person to endorse the range.
Another big year for the brand as the a new range of Bodytoners shapewear is introduced. The brand had found a formula working with recognised experts and fantastic products that performed in independent testing the brand was once again the darling of the fashion press.
A new ambassador was recruited to represent the new Bodytoners shapewear range who had great credibility not only with consumers but amongst industry experts. Mark Heyes was approached to become the 2008 ambassador resulting in some fantastic media coverage on TV’s GMTV & This Morning programmes where during independent reviews the products were voted best performing in the market place.