Sunday 17 November 2019

Bairbre Power... code red for designer Heidi Higgins

Along with pink and brick, red is one of the most popular colours of A/W15

Heidi Eliza
Heidi Eliza

My usual line of enquiry when I go Autumn/Winter shopping is to ask the assistant: does this come in black or navy? Mix the two together, and I'm happy out.

I'm not into overly bright colours or show-off shades that scream 'look at me' and I tend to veer away from styles that are too obvious or that will get you noticed, but sometimes, it's tempting to be bold - like with red, one of the key colours this season along with a bewildering array of pinks and a punchy, hugely attractive terracotta brick.

The couture catwalks gave us great red dresses from Chanel and a memorable, longline coat from Dior. Fendi, Ferragamo and Marni worked those fire engine hues dramatically, and when these A/W15 photos from the Irish designer Heidi Higgins landed on my desk, they stopped me in my tracks.

I surprised myself as I cooed, "Oh, I'd love to wear red". I don't actually own anything red, apart from my favourite lipstick, Chanel's Gabrielle (#444).

Heidi Higgins explored lots of different shades and chose three different reds for her jacquard pieces and another one for her double and single-weight crepes. She also added in a trim of pink on the 'Gigi' dress for good measure.

Exciting times for the designer, whose new collection arrives into stores in the middle of next week. She has been stocked in Brown Thomas stores in Dublin and Galway, and, this season, she goes into their Cork store too.

This weekend, Heidi finishes off revamping her flagship studio and boutique at 42 Grattan Street, Portlaoise (057 8689027) in time for the arrival of her new collection next week.

"The HH customer loves colour, beautiful fabrics, and fit is key. This is something we have learned a great deal about, especially in our own boutique," says Heidi. "All styles are available in size 8-16, with a selection of styles in size 18 too. Dresses feature largely in the collection, but we also have a selection of separates like silk pussybow blouses, tailored skirts and jersey dresses."

Busy with her new website,, Heidi has plans in train for a new range called Heidi Higgins Boutique Collection, a line of exclusive styles sold only in her boutique in Portlaoise. The designer hopes to grow this to a bigger collection next season.


Amy factor

Walking around the Galway races last week and Dublin's RDS two days ago, I was taken by the number of women wearing sandals, and heels, from the Amy Huberman Collection at Bourbon shoes. My curiosity got the better of me so I went to investigate and scooped an exclusive first glimpse of Amy's upcoming A/W15 Bourbon collection. They go into stores on September 1 but you can pre-order on 041-9743957, and that's probably wise as the most popular styles have been known to sell out within days. Amy's favourite this season is, I'm told, (1) Flash Dance, and the €99 simulated snakeskin-style comes in gold (great for special occasions), or in a black leather with a very manageable heel for Monday-Fridays. The best seller in the range has been the Singing in the Rain zipped ankle boot (€129.99) and the new collection features (2) Forever Young, in suede and leather, costing €119.99. It comes in three colour combinations and is cut nicely on the ankle to flatter the leg. I'm predicting lots of love for (3) Sound of Music, a patent peeptoe that comes in cream, black or navy and costs €99. It reminds me of a less high version of the cream peeptoes Amy wore at her wedding. GO TO:

A nod to coco

There's nothing like a red lipstick to lift your flagging spirits at the end of a long day and

take you, revitalised, into the night. Buy: My absolute favourite is Chanel's ROUGE COCO in Gabrielle (#444), RRP €32.50

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