4 Real Irish Women Wear AW16 Trends Their Own Way

Proving that TRUE STYLE IS AGELESS, four Irish women demonstrate their ability to incorporate AW16 trends into their EXISTING WARDROBES


1. RUNWAY TO REAL LIFE: Extra wide culottes. Fashion designer EDEL TRAYNOR lives to layer

“I love clothes and design but my everyday style is minimal and functional. These culottes are part of my AW16 collection and were inspired by Colin O’Brien photographs of traveller kids in London in the 1980s. They were wearing hand-me-downs, which they’d made their own, and I liked the idea. The sheer cami is also one of my own designs. I like the outerwear-as-underwear trend and it gives the whole look a feminine touch.

It’s annoying to see clothes cheaply made and churned out on the high street. The culture of wearing something once and throwing it out doesn’t sit well with me. Everybody looks like everybody else.

I won the Future Makers award from the Design and Crafts Council in June and made a black culottes jumpsuit with leather accents to wear to the event. I loved it. I have a black Danielle Romeril dress from her SS14 collection that has served me well.

I think Roisin Murphy and Angela Scanlon both have excellent personal style. I’d like to see FKA Twigs wearing Edel Traynor, but I might have to push my designs a bit more!”

Edel Traynor is at [Made], Powerscourt Centre, Dublin 2 and Dipili, 6 Ormond Quay Lower, Dublin 1; www.edeltraynor.com

Sheer tulle camisole, €95; black culottes, €390; both Edel Traynor. Photographed by Daniel Holfeld. Make-up by Anna O’Callaghan.


2. RUNWAY TO REAL LIFE: Dramatic cape dress. ORLA MURTAGH, wife of horse trainer Johnny Murtagh, likes to wow

Comfort is my priority when I’m at the races because I need to be able to run around. From jockey’s wife to trainer’s wife my style has definitely changed – I can’t wear high heels anymore! But I do love to dress up when I can, especially for the Longines Irish Champions Weekend, which is on next weekend in Leopardstown and the Curragh, and is one of my favourite events in the racing calendar.

Louise Kennedy’s designs are clean and elegant and I always feel good in her pieces. The red embellishment on the sleeves of this dress caught my eye immediately. I could see myself wearing it to the British Champions Series dinner at St James’s Palace. It’s so dramatic, but so comfortable.

I’m not a label-conscious person, nor am I loyal to any particular brand. In London, I love shopping on the King’s Road and Bond Street. I also like the personal shoppers at Brown Thomas, Kildare Village and Gallery 9 and Kalu in Naas, where I bought a beautiful outfit for the Melbourne Cup. Last year at Ascot I wore a tangerine Givenchy dress and paired it with a Esther Louise Millinery hat.

This season, I’m looking out for a ladies’ trilby hat and some new ankle boots. I also need to invest in a smart black handbag.”


Black jersey cape dress with hand-beaded embellishment, €1,595, Louise Kennedy. Photographed by Daniel Holfeld. Make-up by Anna O’Callaghan.


3. RUNWAY TO REAL LIFE: Pink power. Retired chemistry teacher and charity campaigner MARGARET MULLETT mixes old with new

“I love to buy coats and I’ve hung on to many over the years. A favourite in my wardrobe is a black llama mink coat that I bought in the 1976 fire sale in Switzers. My husband George and I went to Canada three years later and it served me well. I still wear it several times every year.

Another good investment is an Un Jour Ailleurs jacket that I bought in Brussels in 2011. I initially wore it representing the Irish Haemochromatosis Association at the European Parliament but it has since become a wardrobe staple.

The shade of this Max Mara coat immediately caught my attention – it’s a modern neutral. I’m currently eyeing up a very smart black and white coat in Hobbs, which I know will go with anything. I will wear it with my black leather Paula Rowan gloves, a Christmas gift from one of my sons.

My husband George was diagnosed with haemochromatosis in 2000 and died six weeks later. Early diagnosis is crucial so I’ve become a passionate campaigner for awareness of this disease, which affects one in 83 Irish people. It’s given me a new focus.”


Pale pink coat wool coat, €709; cream silk blouse, €119; grey tweed trousers, €175; all MAX MARA at Brown Thomas. Photographed by Doreen Kilfeather. Make-up by Lancôme, Brown Thomas, Dublin.


4. RUNWAY TO REAL LIFE: Black only. JULIE KELLEHER, artistic director at the Everyman Theatre, Cork, favours black

“I work in a creative environment so day-to-day I’m usually in black leggings and jersey dresses. But for opening nights, I like to go all out and wear a dress and heels. People certainly don’t dress up for the theatre as much as they used to. But I think that’s a good thing – it makes it more accessible.

I feel most comfortable in black, but these pieces I’m wearing all have different textures and shapes so the overall look is still interesting. This Rick Owens jacket was the start of a love affair for me and the dress, by Sacai, on close inspection, has the most stunning details. It was out of character for me, but I wore a red Caroline Kilkenny dress to The Irish Times Theatre Awards last year and felt amazing in it.

The shopping scene here in Cork is excellent, not just for high-street brands, but also because Cork has independent boutiques like Brocade and Lime and vintage shops such as Miss Daisy Blue and Devilish Designs. The stock in Samui is incredible too – it feels really curated. I’m currently lusting after a pale pink Acne wool coat I spotted there.

George Hanover, an actress who appeared in Factory Girls at the Everyman last month, is the most stylish woman I know. She has some really unique pieces and wears them beautifully.”


Black leather jacket, Rick Owens, €1,295; black pleated dress, Sacai, €775; black leather boots, AF Vandevorst, €750; all at Samui, 17 Drawbridge Street, Cork. Photographed by John Allen. Hair by Staunton Byrne, 9 Holbar House, Village East, Douglas, Co Cork. Make-up by MAC at Brown Thomas, Cork.

Sarah Breen

This article appeared in a previous issue, for more features like this, don’t miss our October issue, out Thursday, October 6.

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