The Vampire’s Wife Bids Farewell Amid Market Turmoil

The Cult-Favorite British Label Ends Its Decade-Long Run, Citing Post-Pandemic Challenges and Wholesale Market Upheaval

The Vampire’s Wife, the British fashion brand that garnered a cult following with its dramatic, sharp-shouldered dresses with Gothic charm, announced on Tuesday that it will cease trading immediately. The decision is attributed to “the upheaval in the wholesale market,” which has significantly impacted the brand.

“After ten years as the creative director of The Vampire’s Wife, it is time for me to say goodbye,” wrote founder Susie Cave, a former model and the wife of musician Nick Cave, in an Instagram post. “I say this with great sadness and want to express my undying gratitude to you all for your support. I wish to thank my extended family at The Vampire’s Wife who helped me create such beautiful things. I cannot describe how much you have all meant to me.”

In a separate statement, the brand thanked its clients, partners, and those who have worn its designs over the past decade. A final physical sale will be held at The Music Room in Mayfair, London, from May 24-26, offering a last chance to purchase its products.

Launched in 2015, The Vampire’s Wife quickly gained popularity with its luxurious fabrics, romantic prints, and signature ruffles. Initially a favorite among British fashion editors, models, and friends of Cave, it eventually became a global success, stocked by retailers such as Matchesfashion, Browns, and Dover Street Market.

However, the brand struggled to navigate the retail and wholesale landscape in the post-pandemic era, alongside other London-based labels such as La Perla, Christopher Kane, Julien Macdonald, and Roksanda. Many faced challenges with tax bills, rent payments, and debts incurred during lockdowns when physical stores were closed. The online retail crisis, including the sale of Farfetch to Coupang and the closure of Matches, further complicated business for small, independent brands.

Last summer, The Vampire’s Wife received a winding-up order from the U.K. Revenue and Customs due to outstanding debt accumulated during the pandemic lockdowns. A winding-up order is issued when a British court determines that a company cannot pay its debts. The brand subsequently secured fresh funds from existing investors to settle its debts.

While the exact cause of the closure was not specified, the collapse of Matches is likely a contributing factor. Matches entered administration earlier this year, leading to significant stock discounts, including items from The Vampire’s Wife sold at 40 to 80 percent off. Numerous brands have struggled to recover outstanding payments and warehouse stock due to contractual agreements with the retailer, though it is unclear if The Vampire’s Wife is among them.