Orlagh Winters: Pride In Kerry Designers

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orlagh wintersOK, so I know that I am a blow-in living in Kerry but I am very proud of the designers and miliners here in The Kingdom.

It really is no wonder that these designs constantly adorn the social pages and win numerous best dressed events at racecourses throughout the country.

The Queen of Milliners, Carol Kennelly, has won just about every Ladies Day competition in the land and this is hardly surprising with her unique designs.

I once described her as the Manchester United of the millinery world but with their recent form I think I need to change the comparison to Madrid.

Cheltenham Gold Cup Winner Jim Culloty has another champion in the family, the hugely talented Aoife Hannon who  is regularly featured in the parade ring of style and who won Milliner of the Year at Kerry Fashion Week.

Recently I was the MC for  the Ladies Lunch in aid of Recovery Haven where there was a superb collection shown by Kerry designer Tina Griffin.

I kinda wished I hadn’t seen the collection as I ordered two pieces that, although I am sure I don’t need it, didn’t stop me from wanting them. I am sure I will find somewhere to wear them.

Tina is a former winner of the Kerry Fashion Designer at KFW and my God she is a deserving winner. Her designs are gaining huge  interest both nationally and overseas and with her beautiful creative mind it is easy to see why.

Yummy Mummy Clodagh Irwin-Owens is another lady whose designs are simply perfection and this lady is one of the most hard working designers in the business.

She is bang in trend while remaining classy. Clodagh is very lucky to have her beautiful sister Emir as her muse and having seen Emir wear Clodagh’s designs at numerous fashion events during the years, one can’t help feel inadequete standing beside her. Clodagh has numerous accolades to her name and was recently named  as Designer of the Year at the Hi Style awards.

Local Tralee lady, Karyn Moriarty leapt to fame in 2011 when she designed the winning dress at the Galway Races worn by the fab fashionista Annmarie O’Leary. Since then Karyn’s creations have been seen on the who’s who of the stylestakes.  Karyn has a taste for what real women want and this is evident in her designs.

I think that there is an assumption that designers cost a lot of money but this is a myth and one that any designer will gladly put to bed. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and ask for their prices and come on ladies, let’s be honest, there really is nothing nicer than knowing that you are going to be the only one wearing this outfit to that special occasion.

The glory of social media is that all these designers have facebook pages where you can see their work.

The Kingdom is normally associated with the wins on the football field and there is always chat about how great these All-Ireland wins are (I wouldn’t be used to that being from Galway)  but sisters are doing it for themselves and are bringing all the big titles back here.

As well as feeling fantastic in one of the special designs there is always a huge feel good factor in supporting these hardworking indigenous talented people.

So go ahead folks, check out your local designers.

Until next time stay stylish

Orlagh xx



  1. Lesley Harris says:

    Lovely writing, I look forward to keeping up with your column x Les

  2. Emir O'Shea says:

    Lovely piece Orlagh. I’m looking forward of course to wearing another few of Clodagh’s designs during the summer months ahead.
    Kerry is full of creativeness. Truly is the best place in the world to live.
    Best of luck with all your new ventures which I know you will excel in.
    Emir. x