A vintage clothing enthusiast whose pastime is to dress in 1940s outfits has been crowned Eventbrite’s Hobby Hero in a national competition.
Teresa Fisher, 50, from Stone in Staffordshire, dresses as a 1940s “promenader” with her husband Steve, 62, on their visits to heritage railways and stately homes.
The couple became hooked on vintage dressing after taking part in their first themed event in 2018, and the pair now attend around 20 to 30 events every year.
Mrs Fisher said: “I can’t believe what started out as a bit of fun has helped me win the Eventbrite Hobby Hero competition.
“My husband and I attended a heritage railway that was hosting a 1940s event and it was like walking into a real Agatha Christie book.
“Ladies with fur stoles, red lipstick, fabulous dresses and victory rolls, and men with amazing suits, wide-legged trousers and hats.
“I was literally wide-eyed with the attention to detail that people displayed and the fun they were having. So we put together an outfit and we haven’t looked back since.”
Mrs Fisher, who works for the Chartered Institute of Railway Operators, uses a mix of homemade designs and clothing from second-hand and vintage shops.
She plans to use part of her prize – £2,500 in cash and £2,500 of support from Eventbrite’s experts and ticket fee credits – to help share her passion by hosting advice forums and workshops to encourage others to perfect their outfits.
Mrs Fisher said: “I spend a lot of time trawling vintage shops and second hand places online looking for original and authentic clothes.
“It’s a real passion. I like to think that by collecting these items I’m a curator for the 1940s.
“The impressive spectacle of seeing people dressed in this fabulous style makes for great photos and I think it’s really important to look as authentic as possible.
“I always include an item of jewellery from my late grandmother or late mother-in-law, a small gesture to my own family history – maybe that’s brought me luck.”
The Hobby Hero competition was launched in May to find Britain’s greatest hobbyist and help them share their pastime with others.
Mrs Fisher was crowned winner from a selection of 10 contenders from around the UK, including an acrobat, a hair braider, a litter picker, a powerlifter, a ghost hunter, and even an upcycle crafter who spent three months turning hundreds of crisp packets into an eco-inspired “crisp packet jacket”.
Eventbrite’s Sebastian Boppert said: “We got hundreds of brilliant entries but Teresa’s entry was so original, had a strong social element, and she was just brimming with the passion and joy her hobby gives her.
“Teresa had some tough competition, but she stood out as a true Hobby Hero.”
The initiative is supported by psychologist Professor Cary Cooper, an expert on wellbeing who advocates using hobbies to boost mental health.
Prof Cooper said: “Hobbies can boost your wellbeing because whether you’re knitting, running, hula hooping, abseiling or baking, they offer a great way to take your mind from the stresses of the world and work, take you away from the screen and let you do something positive, creative and fulfilling.
“Teresa’s hobby really stood out and she is a deserving winner.
“After two years of social isolation, it’s a joy to see people connecting through everyday and unusual hobbies that bring them pleasure and, depending on what you do, improve physical fitness, memory or mood.”