COUNTRY singer Carrie Underwood quite literally lit up the stage at the Grammy's at the weekend and it was Kerryman Don O'Neill who made it all happen.
The Ballyheigue designer created her stunning platinum THEIA ball gown in just three days, after being approached by Underwood's stylist a few weeks ago.
The dress was the talk of the awards ceremony at the weekend, with amazing projection technology making it change patterns every few seconds as she sang. But the process of getting the design just right for such an international stage was a frantic one, the north Kerryman revealed.
"When I received the call from Carrie's stylist, Trish Townsend asking me to make the dress, I felt a rush of excitement and immediately said I'd be thrilled and honoured to design a gown for her," he said. "Over the course of the next six days, fabric options were sourced from France and shipped to Carrie's team for approval as well as to the video production company to ensure compatibility with the projection technology. After getting the green light from both parties the team had three days left to create the gown. Beading and stitching was frantically started and in record time, the dress was completed and shipped out for the fitting."
The sensational dress received huge praise in the LA Times this week, with a reporter saying: "What really blew us away was her stunning custom couture gown by THEIA. The icy gown was gorgeous all on its own, but became part of the show as changing images of all kinds were projected on it. It all seemed magical."
In what was a very exciting week for the north Kerry designer, Hollywood starlet turned bad girl, Lindsay Lohan, was also snapped in one of Don's 2011 THEIA gowns at last week's amfAR New York Gala, which kicked off NY Fashion Week. The troubled star received massive praise in the US media, with hard-hitting critics remarking on how well she looked in Don's gown. One website posted that wearing THEIA was the best decision she has made in a very long time, while mouthy Fashion Police host Joan Rivers also admitted that she looked really glamourous in THEIA.
Don was also busy dressing the stars at this side of the pond over the weekend, with both Kathryn Thomas and Sile Seoige sporting THEIA gowns to the IFTAs.
Speaking to The Kerryman before Christmas, Don said he would love to dress Kathryn in 2013, so needless to say he was thrilled to see that happen.
"I love Kathryn. Not only is she beautiful but she has an extra gorgeous radiance that comes from deep inside and I truly wanted the privilege of dressing such a special woman," Don told The Kerryman.
In a tweet after the IFTAs, Kathryn gave the gown the thumbs up: "Don, felt a million dollars. You're a star Thank you so much again x"