Friday 23 February 2018

Irish blossoms flying the flag for homegrown style

Dublin may not have its own fashion week, but the capital is packed with talented designers, all flying the flag for homegrown style writes Bairbre Power

Lennon Courtney short sleeve tee €120; Lennon Courtney 'Queen Bee' stripe skirt €140; Orla Kiely tan leather bag €419; Folli Follie double rose gold bangle €150; Folli Follie carma bangle €45
Lennon Courtney short sleeve tee €120; Lennon Courtney 'Queen Bee' stripe skirt €140; Orla Kiely tan leather bag €419; Folli Follie double rose gold bangle €150; Folli Follie carma bangle €45
Aideen Bodkin ‘Paso’ print dress, €279.95 and clutch bag, €124.95; Caroline Kilkenny ‘Simone’ coat, €374.95; Follie rope bracelet, €80, ring, €40; Embellished heels, €169, Fitzpatrick Shoes
Baby blue quilted dress with gold piping and short sleeves, €239.95, Fee G; Clutch, €105; Guess; ‘Wow’ Necklace, €129 and bracelet, €69, Absolute Vintage
‘Brianna’ floral prom dress, €319.95, Caroline Kilkenny; Patent court shoes, €249, Fitzpatrick Shoes
‘Eleanor’ cream dress with embellished neckline, €395, Niamh O’Neill; Metallic pink clutch, €100, Guess; Rose gold rope bracelet, €80 and ring, €40, Folli Folli; Nude leather court shoes, €249, Fitzpatrick Shoes
Aideen Bodkin ‘Samba’ dress, €274.95, Christina Belle beaded ‘Izzy’ bracelet, €130
Bairbre Power

Bairbre Power

This weekend, I've been busy watching Autumn/Winter 2015 unfold at London Fashion Week, surrounded by a slew of paroxisms about the innovation and creativity of British designers showing.

But I won't be jealous. How could I be when there is so much talent at home, driven by a clever bunch of designers who listen carefully to what women want and interpret our requests in their own inimitable style.

Irish designers have tackled our pet hates with gusto and given us sleeves (and not just annoying puffed ones, either). They embraced longer hemlines, flattering waistlines and even their pretty embellishments are detachable for trips to the dry cleaner.

Designers like Caroline Kilkenny have added lovely, measured, sexy touches like a sheer panel on a full-skirted prom dress while Fiona Heaney of Fee G commissioned a French mill to make her quilted fabric.

The tab on the front of the blue shift dress front is detachable to offer different looks. This season Niamh O'Neill has reprised some of her bestselling shapes which will please her growing army of fans. Her signature metallic belt tie is back (hurrah!) but there's newness too with pretty necklines and strong, memorable colours like bright turquoise, perfect for summer weddings.

Aideen Bodkin has earned huge respect as the problem-solving, go-to designer for special occasionwear. This season, her patterns range from bold monochrome and hot pink combos to understated metallic-flecked neutrals - and check out her clever, matching clutch bags.

Lennon Courtney (Brendan Courtney is the token male designer in our all-female designer line-up today) have varied their shapes from cleverly cut, oversized styles to more fitted 'hero' designs.

Their hot tangerine top with striped skirt is a true head-turner, which is why we picked it for our glamorous cover.

All the outfits featured in today's shoot were chosen from the new Irish SS15 deliveries into Kilkenny shops, home to Ireland's largest collection of Irish designers.

Styling: Mary Keane

Photography: Daniel Holfeld

Illustrations: Emma Greenhalgh

Hair: Darren Lacken

Make-up: Roy Wong

All clothing and accessories available from Kilkenny Shops in 13 locations nationwide and online at (01) 677 7066 (Nassau Street, Dublin 2). Shoes from Fitzpatrick Shoes, Grafton Street, Dublin 2, (01) 677 2333

Irish Independent

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