Bairbre Power finds the ultimate Debs dresses
Vive la différence. That's certainly the philosophy this debs season, when the goal is to find an alluring but, most importantly, unique dress.
It makes sense to leave nothing to chance and to buy from a shop or boutique that registers who buys which dress and for which debs. That way, your night won't be ruined by meeting a twin!
Grecian styles are still big news according to Aoife Collins (29), the Dublin designer behind the Irish label Dresscode. (It's worth remembering that Aoife Collins keeps a log of dresses and schools.) When I saw her gowns at Arnotts -- also available at Anthony Ryans in Galway -- I was surprised that they cost less than €450 because the attention to detail, the beading and generous use of fabric suggest a lot more.
My favourite, the blue chiffon strapless dress with copper beading on the bust, costs €400, while the mushroom Grecian-style dress with flower and pearl detail is €420.
Fitzpatricks does a nice line in ever-so-comfortable bejewelled flats at €100. The super-high Fendis with zip detail are reduced by 40pc to €375, while black, sequinned Sergio Rossi shoes are down by 40pc to €300 .
If you are determined to strike an independent debs pose, why not commission a great neckpiece or clutch bag from Yvonne Beale -- she crochets the most incredible pieces and she has just launched By Yvonne. Call 086 881 8921.
Sandra Walsh of Sandz, Blackrock, dresses mums heading along to the more formal debs attended by parents as well as students. Her advice is to "play it down and let the young girls shine".