Focus on Irish Fashion: Melissa Curry
Sligo-born Melissa Curry is a jewellery designer on the up. Blending ethnic and modern, graphic and classic and all with a strong sense of fun, the Irish designer has her own range and has also collaborated with famous names like Liberty of London, Yohji Yamamoto and Phillipe Starck. We caught up with Melissa to see if being a designer so hotly tipped for big things is all it's really cracked up to be. Here's what she told Independent Woman:
When did you realise that you wanted to be a fashion designer?
I always wanted to have a career in design but it wasn't until I reached art college in Paris that I developed an interest in jewellery. A colleague of mine hinted that I should pursue jewellery as my work has always been so detailed.
What was the first thing you designed?
My first pieces were made during my internship for Matiere Premiere, a beautiful boutique in Paris where I worked at weekends whilst studying graphic design.
What is inspiring you now?
The world around me, events, people, projects accordingly.
How would you describe your SS11 collection?
This season's collections are dominated by colour and it has a huge presence in all domains. Good for the psyche...and the morale. As well as being bold and design-led, I have a very feminine side to my work.
What has been your biggest challenge to date?
Rearing my son and juggling my work. It will be a challenge also for me to go back out into the international fashion arena but I look forward to it nonetheless. I'll also have to find a new studio which is always a huge challenge.
If you could choose a celebrity endorsement who would it be?
During the Obama inauguration I styled two pieces for Michelle Obama in the hope of presenting her with them. I believe they have been given to her so all going well she might wear them soon. She is strong and feminine and the jewellery I designed reflects that sense of hope and endurance that she embodies.
Whose collection have you really been impressed by this season?
I don't really follow too many designers as I tend to get lost in my own work. I do love Dries Van Noten, Marni and also Tom Ford for his lady suits. Our own Tim Ryan is a true genius.
What is the one item every girl should have in her closet?
A great pair of shoes and a killer neck piece.
What was your most tragic fashion moment?
My second season at Paris fashion week. I had sent out 500 invitations to my show only to find out the venue had changed and everything I had prepared had to be scrapped. Nobody knew where I was and for me it was a total disaster.
Where do you like to shop?
It's hard to say, I really don't get much time for me ... I love going to 2nd Avenue boutique in Sandymount, as they always something glamorous and cool. I also have a great chat and a bit of a laugh with Jacinta who runs the boutique.
Where can we find you on a Sunday afternoon?
Either cooking lunch for friends or running the line for my sons under 9s rugby team.
Share one insider secret?
Less is more... and keep the spark within.
Who do you most admire and why?
I admire different people for different things....looking at Oprah today hanging up her shoes after 25 years of giving to the people and the world around her ... what a woman. Has to be admired.
How would you like your designs to be remembered?
I like the interaction that goes with my work so personality is important for me. I guess it's only natural.