Tuesday 6 December 2016

Designer Don ensures 'extraordinary' Emma will wow on red carpet

Published 27/02/2016 | 02:30

Don O'Neill
Don O'Neill
Emma Donoghue. Photo: Alberto Rodriguez/NBC

Oscar nominee Emma Donoghue will walk down the red carpet tomorrow night wearing a custom made gown by Irish designer Don O'Neill from Ballyheigue, Co Kerry.

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Don is creative director of the New York brand Theia and his fashion fans include Oprah Winfrey, who wore his signature 'crunchy sequin' gown to the 2012 Oscars.

Don  approached Emma through her brother, David Donoghue, who is the Irish Ambassador to the UN, and his wife Jill. Emma replied, looked up the Theia website and so began the process of creating a wow dress for tomorrow night. Don dispatched drawings and videos of fabric and Emma plummed for a vibrant colour in an intriguing fabric which shows off her titian hair.

"We are two red heads, we are both doctors with honorary doctorates in the Arts and we both love this dress," said Don, who last night remained tight-lipped about the Oscars frock.

"Emma and Christine called by our studio on Wednesday on their way from France to LA and we did a fitting and drank coffee.

"At a dinner that night thrown by David and Jill, Emma said that getting her Theia couture gown was "the best part" of her Oscars journey so far."

Don added: "The whole idea of dressing Emma in Theia came about because of something I read in the Irish Independent.

"In an interview, Emma said that she intended wearing 'a nice dress in her wardrobe' and I thought this cannot happen. This is an extraordinary woman who wrote an extraordinary book and she has to look special on her Oscars night.

"I was thrilled to get an email back from Emma saying she would be delighted, and excited, to be dressed by me so I stalked her online, saw her style, what she had been wearing, came up with lots of drawings, two colours and she chose one.

"I've given her loads of dos and don'ts for the red carpet and as she left here, Emma described my dress as 'so special, it looked like it had been freshly rained upon'."

Irish Independent

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