Designer Lulu's kiss of fortune with her lip-inspired bags
She's the designer whose ruby red lips have inspired handbag aficionados around the world.
Lulu Guinness arrived for her latest trip to Ireland yesterday wearing her signature red lipstick, and her Irish customers at Kildare Village shopping outlet lost no time posing for photographs.
"It used to be in just Japan that everyone wanted to pose for photos but now it's everywhere," said Lulu who puckered up and smiled.
Her celebrity clients include everyone from Kate Moss to Helena Bonham Carter to Cara Delevingne and Paloma Faith who, in Lulu's words, "is a big carrier."
Explaining how her signature lips logo came about, Lulu said it wasn't so much a case of personal vanity but a love of glam vintage. "When I was growing up, I loved all the old style glamour and 1940s and 1950s movie stars," she said.
"In those days, you really couldn't buy red lipstick in Boots but I found some and started wearing it which was considered quite theatrical in those days. People said it suited me so it became my little signature from when I was about 16 and 17."
Twenty five years after launching her handbag business, the petite English designer has become a household name, while her cosmetics bags have became a Sweet Sixteen favourite with US teens.
"My bags are not about age and I meet mothers who tell me their daughters are pinching their bags," said Lulu who was a regular visitor here when married to Valentine Guinness.
"I'm very fond of the Guinness family. My daughters are Guinness and I'm fascinated by any history that anyone has to tell me about the family.
"When you come to Ireland, it's really nice because everyone has a comment and with Guinness, I'm associated with something that everyone loves," she said.