Superstars go Gaga over Irish designer freebies
IRISH designers are showering visiting celebrities with "gifts" of their creations in the hope that a red carpet appearance will boost business.
Cork jewellery designer Vikki Shorten reports "massive pick--up in the US" after Lady Gaga wore the €800 silver and black Swarovski crystal glove she left for the superstar at Dublin's Four Seasons Hotel last October.
"I left my Tila glove with Lady Gaga's entourage and when she wore it five weeks ago on a red carpet in Los Angeles, the reaction was massive and business trebled," said Vikki.
"The US is very celebrity-driven and the fact that Fergie from Black Eyed Peas ordered my jewellery and has been wearing it on tour definitely makes for a quicker route to success, especially with American store buyers who really sit up and take note if celebrities wear your jewellery," said the designer who started her company VS Luxury Ltd 18 months ago.
Clothes designer Claire O'Connor made news in Washington after she gifted two dresses to Michelle Obama and received a handwritten note from the First Lady.
Milliner Martha Lynn, of the Project 51 design collective, went to Arthur's Day last Thursday in the hope that UK singer-songwriter Paloma Faith would be wearing one of her hats at the Academy Theatre.
"Paloma was wearing a hat, however, it wasn't mine. But I will be keeping an eye out for it," said Martha who also left a hat for Beyonce at Oxegen in July.
"I delivered a pink and black hat with crystals to Beyonce in Punchestown and I was assured by her crew that she got it and liked it," said Martha.
"Stars are always looking for something new and fresh. It's about getting it to the right people," she said.
Dublin boutique owner Lara Casey could not have anticipated the impact a chance gift to Katie Price (aka Jordan) five years ago would have on her life.
"I sent up a pair of Terry de Havilland sandals because I thought she'd love them. Simple as that. We were shocked when she rang the store so we sent up clothes for her to wear at a public appearance in Easons and she ended up wearing them in a shoot for 'OK!' magazine."
Since then, Katie and Lara have developed a strong working relationship and Lara, a mother of two, now helps style the star and regularly appears on her reality TV show, 'Katie' on Sky Living.