Louise is top of the fashion stakes at Sligo Races
TEACHER Louise Gallagher from Aughnasheelin, Leitrim, was top of the class in the fashion stakes at Sligo Races.
She scooped the Littlewoods Ireland €1,500 'Best Dressed Lady' prize last Thursday.
TV personality Maura Derrane described Louise's Caroline Kilkenny dress as: "Simply delightful."
Louise had swapped the paint brush for blusher to enter the competition.
She told The Sligo Champion: "My husband-Michael Domican-and I have just bought a house in Aughnasheelin
"We've been married a year and were decorating all morning.
"We decided we deserved a break and a night out and picked Ladies Day at Sligo for it.
"It was the first time ever we were at the races in Cleveragh.
"I bought the Caroline Kilkenny dress at the Design Centre, Powerscourt, Dublin because I liked the shape, colour and look.
"I wore it to a recent wedding and took it out of the wardrobe on Thursday.
"It came as a bit of a shock to win."
Louise also wore a hat by Carrick-on-Shannon hatmaker, David Ballantine.
Her bag came from New Look and shoes from Aldo.
Louise and her husband, also a teacher, will put the prize to good use.
She said: ""We'll spend it on furniture for the house. I went home on Thursday and had a look at the Littlewoods website.
"The prize has come at a good time for us."
Louise is also starting a new job at Roscommon CBS in September.
Her husband Michael is a teacher in Granard, Longford. They are also both columnists for The Irish Farmers Journal.
Ironically, they were also both due to play tag rugby in Carrick-on-Shannon on Thursday night.
She said: "We decided to stay in Sligo instead.
"It turned out to be a very good decision."
On a packed Ladies Day, Louise was one of 10 finalists chosen from 150 ladies invited to the Littlewoods Ireland hospitality tent.
The other nine were: Corina Hynes, Edel Mulvihill, Siofra Gallagher, Kathy McManus, Fiona Gallagher, Maire Rafferty, Caitriona Hasson, Aoife Ni Chearnaigh and Marina Carroll.
They each received a Littlewoods voucher for €100.
Maura Derrane said choosing the ten finalists was a very, very difficult decision.
She said: "I am blinded by the glamour in Sligo.
"The colours were wonderful and so different.
"The age range also went from 15 to 80 and I was really, really impressed."
Maura added: "I felt Louise was very 50's inspired in her choice of dress.
"Everyone put in a great effort and there was some fantastic style on show.
"It's the first time I've been to Sligo races and it is a lovely setting with a great atmosphere."
Racecourse Manager Brian Kennedy congratulated the winner and the other nine finalists.
He thanked Littlewoods Ireland and Maura Derrane for judging the competition.
Brian said: "There was certainly a lot of style and glamour evident and Ladies Day is always special at Sligo."