Keeping up with the Crawleys (of Downton Abbey)

Butler Service

Luxury lifestyle trend these days? Consumers want to live the Manor Life. Call it the Downton Abbey Effect: demand for the well-staffed home is on the rise, according to agencies and house managers alike. Clients are calling for live-in couples, live-out housekeepers, flight attendants for private jets, stewards for the yachts and chefs for the summer house. And employers are creating job descriptions based on Downton Abbey and expecting a level of service associated with five-star resorts or Buckingham Palace. Claudia Kahn, founder of The Help Company, a staffing agency based in Los Angeles, says she used to get one call a month for a butler but has gotten three in the past week alone. Some request old-fashioned ” ‘Downton Abbey’-type service,” a phenomenon she attributes partly to the popularity of the television show and partly to clients yearning to match the lifestyle they experience at high-end resorts and on yachting trips.

Stationer Marc Friedland, famous for his Oscar envelopes, has found a new niche: reinterpreting coats of arms for clientele who want to brand their estates, properties and yachts – you name it. He’ll craft everything from calling cards and linens to cocktail napkins adorned with these new family crests.

And then there are the beads, baubles and nostalgic fashions. Bling is back with designers and consumers alike paying homage to the Art Deco (Great Gatsby) and Edwardian (Downton Abbey) looks of the day, but with modern twists: jewels, brooches, earrings, jeweled necklaces, bracelets and beautifully draped gowns are very en vogue.

By: Chelsea Orth, KWE Partners


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