The end of 2022 raised questions about the direction I should take Hidden Beneath as a brand. At the end of November last year, I took part in a market that was dedicated to fetish attire called Le Boutique Bazaar. Held in the basement of a London strip club it is a sanctuary for people who enjoy latex, rubber and all the other taboo garb that would get you potentially arrested on the high street. It was the first chance I’ve had since doing Hidden Beneath to talk to my customers face to face which I really enjoyed, and it was a reminder of why I do this. I also got to meet people who create the weird and wonderful and honestly, it was refreshing to have a conversation about butt plugs and the like with objectivity and no giggles.
Correspondingly, it was also a reminder that I have created a brand that doesn’t belong in the place where it is created. Being a one-woman show is quite isolating and there are so many cogs in the machine I don’t often get the chance to look outside of the Hidden Beneath bubble, which I know is not great, but I’m sure other entrepreneurs can relate.
Since I started the brand six years ago, I have tried to create a path into the lingerie industry but then during the second collection I made a bralette out of fishnet fabric and that one item changed the course of the brand, whether I wanted it to or not. I didn’t want to go down the fetish route, I really didn’t. Instead, I wanted to create a brand that would appeal to all women made up of carefully edited more-than-basic items that were kind to the environment (and I still do). But you must lean into what sells and as we all know sex sells! Over the pandemic, it became obvious that fishnet lingerie was what my consumer wanted so that’s what I made, and I didn’t have time to make anything else. I have spoken about bridal and cotton collections which I still intend to do but I am now thinking this is not possible under the Hidden Beneath label and I maybe need to create a different brand for those pieces. So, for now, expect to see fishnet, fishnet and more fishnet. I have zero capital to do multiple projects and expand, so if anyone wants to invest, I’m open to offers but in the meantime, I have to make what works and presently all roads lead to fetish.