Friday 30 September 2016

Paradise pieces from Irish designers

Constance Harris

Published 27/06/2016 | 02:30

Top, €130, Jill de Burca, Design Centre. Silk scarf (worn on head), €125; bag, €240, both Lisa Ryder. Glasses, €22, The Spoilt Bitch Club. Earrings, €120, Catriona Hanly, Design Centre. Model’s right hand: Perspex cuff, €48, Capulet & Montague, Om Diva. Model’s left hand: Bracelet, €145, Melissa Curry.
Top, €130, Jill de Burca, Design Centre. Silk scarf (worn on head), €125; bag, €240, both Lisa Ryder. Glasses, €22, The Spoilt Bitch Club. Earrings, €120, Catriona Hanly, Design Centre. Model’s right hand: Perspex cuff, €48, Capulet & Montague, Om Diva. Model’s left hand: Bracelet, €145, Melissa Curry.

If I have to endure one more shot of too-thin, blank-expressioned, massively conservatively dressed Alexa Chung, I may have to conclude that the world of international fashion editorial and advertising has lost the knowledge of what constitutes fashion and a fashion fix. I counted at least four shots of her in last month's British Vogue. What is the appeal, guys? I am stumped.

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Fashion is a celebration of change, creativity, innovation. Chung, in her uniform of navy sweaters and navy jeans, is the antithesis of that. Sheesh.

On our pages today is a shoot devised by photographer Anita Sadowska and stylist Carmel Daly to celebrate the vibrant and colourful accessories that are such a big trend this season - and as far from Chung-ism as one can get.

This, to me, is a treat of a shoot and a proper fashion editorial. Apart from the fact that the parrots are such a novel idea and become characters in the shoot, I love the dynamism of the fashion ideas included, such as the mixing of very bright colours with dark ones. They used a scarf to make a halter-neck top, and then another one is used to convert a simple hat into looking jaunty.

"I was really inspired by the collections from this year and into next autumn. There is a lot of ethnic coming in, and there were quite a few looks being brought from this spring/summer into next autumn/winter's looks," stylist Carmel tells me. "Scarves are 'in' in all shapes and sizes, and are being used in all kinds of ways, from just around the neck to creative clothing pieces."

I also love that Carmel, in selecting the pieces she wanted to use, favoured Irish talent - not because they were Irish, but because they were the best.

"Irish designers are meeting an international standard," Carmel tells me. "They are out there, selling to the world, to some of the biggest retailers, and people don't know it. It isn't often you see Irish accessories designers in one shoot, so Anita and I decided we would do it."

As you peruse the shots on our gorgeous pages, you will see original, award-winning jewellery work by Melissa Curry; Capulet & Montague; and Chupi; great headpieces by Margaret O'Connor millinery; quirky bags by Morganna Murphy; and original scarves by Ciara Silke. Carmel also used Irish clothing designers Jill de Burca, Edel Traynor and Jennifer Rothwell.

"I wanted to bring Irish design to the fore, and I wanted to use bold colour," Carmel explains. "You can really pop an outfit in a dark colour by adding bright accessories."

The Powerscourt Townhouse Centre's second floor houses many Irish designer stores such as Design Centre, Marion Cuddy Irish Designers Emporium, Jennifer Rothwell and Made. One street over, you'll find Om Diva and its new and emerging Irish designer floor, Atelier 27.

And not a Chung look in sight .

Photography by Anita Sadowska

Styling by Carmel Daly

Fashion edited by Constance Harris

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