Tuesday 20 March 2018

A decade apart

Caoilfhionn and sister Grainne work well together despite their age difference.
Caoilfhionn and sister Grainne work well together despite their age difference.
Grainne Walsh designer
Bairbre Power

Bairbre Power

Fashion designer Grainne Walsh and her photographer sister Caoilfhionn, from Castleknock, Co Dublin, set up PRoSHOTS together in 2009, combining their expertise to create a simple-to-use service for designers, boutiques and publications in Ireland.

"We produce and distribute high-resolution, print-quality images of garments, accessories and products, working with designers and retailers from all over Ireland," explains Grainne, who has worked as a freelance fashion designer/consultant with Victoria's Secret in the US and in Italy, Ireland, Turkey and Hong Kong.

She currently divides her time between consultancy work, trend forecasting, PRoSHOTS and part-time lecturing.

"Before this, I would have had concerns about working with a family member or partner, but after four years working with Caoilfhionn, I think the benefits far outweigh the negatives," says Grainne.

"It has affected our relationship, but in a good way; by working so closely together we see each other's strengths and weaknesses and have a new respect for each other.

"Caoilfhionn and I have exactly the same relationship outside of work because we have so much in common. We can bicker, bitch and kill each other just the same as ever, and, being the eldest sister, I am the bossy, bullying sister and Caoilfhionn is the baby sister, the spoilt brat – so as long as we know our roles, we are grand. It will probably always be like that and that is fine."

"We pay ourselves fixed amounts for our hours or responsibilities; there are no grey areas, so thankfully no arguments," adds Grainne. "We call Caoilfhionn the Eddie Hobbs of the family – she's very good with money. We trust each other implicitly: we have access to each other's accounts, which is all very unadvisable I'm sure, but I don't know any people I trust more than my two sisters."

While there is a 10-year gap between Grainne and Caoilfhionn, they have a middle sister, Ciara, who is a knitwear designer in New York and, with her calm disposition, she can act as mediator and peacemaker if required.

What started out in her kitchen in the evenings has now grown into a successful business. PRoSHOTS is upscaling and moving to a new premises and studio in Chapelizod, so it's exciting times ahead.

Irish Independent

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