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Kate fans go crazy for my outfits, says Orla

IRISH designer Orla Kiely has revealed her phone went into meltdown when Kate Middleton wore two of her outfits.

The stunning royal has stepped out in Orla's designs on two occasions -- sparking a fashion frenzy as fans clamour to get their hands on any garment Kate chooses to wear.

"That's been a lovely thing to happen. And because Kate chooses her own outfits, she isn't put into things.

"I think she looked amazing in the dress and then she wore another one really soon after. She's gorgeous, she looks amazing whatever she's wearing," said Orla in an interview with weekly glossy Grazia. Orla explained how the K-Mid effect strengthened her business.

"When Kate wears one of your designs you get a boost. The phone was ringing off the hook -- email went, and one of my team counted over 800 Google alerts in that time! The only thing was, it was the end of the season so we didn't have so many of the dresses in stock. But it's a nice thing to happen," she said.







Handbags

Last year, it emerged the Irish designer planned further overseas expansion in the US and Asia and more retail outlets within this year.

Revenue at the London-based company jumped by 11pc within the year to £7.89m (€8.97m). Print handbags and accessories contributed to overall pre-tax profits of £423,277 (€481,519.67) which was a 9.6pc from the previous year.

A graduate of the National College of Art and Design, Dublin-born Orla runs the business with husband Dermott Rowan.

She used to make hats after finishing in the Royal College of Art in London before moving into fashion design.

She is now working with Uniqlo, which has brought Orla's designs to a wider audience in both the US and Asia, and move into homewares, stationary and wallpaper design. She has even been involved in designing a car, which she described as a "challenge".

jlast@herald.ie


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