Carolyn Moore selects some of the best Irish designs for Autumn/Winter. Think opulence and dark romance...
While most of us are still waiting for something we can call a summer, fashion is giving spring/summer trends the cold shoulder and moving on to the next big thing.
As the A/W16 collections start to drop, it’s becoming clear that, for the season ahead, opulence is the order of the day.
There’s a mood of dark romance in the air and the season is set to be dominated by sumptuous fabrics and a Belle Époque attitude.
It’s a mood naturally suited to occasion wear, and with rich brocades and shimmering jacquards; fabulous feathers and luxurious faux furs; lashings of lace and the cool sheen of metallics, the A/W16 Irish designer collections at Kilkenny Shop are a visual and tactile delight.
Offering a feast of textures and finishes, transitional pieces in soft blush, navy, champagne and gold are on the rails now; with an injection of cool, classic party wear pieces on the horizon in timeless black, with pops of teal, claret and blue.
Synonymous with the promotion of Irish design, this season also sees Kilkenny Shop add Liz Quin to its designer stable, alongside the customer favourites showcased across these pages: Caroline Kilkenny, Aideen Bodkin, Fee G, and the more casual stylings of Luke Lovely.
Giving Belle Époque opulence a contemporary twist, Aideen Bodkin’s collarless brocade coats are a masterclass in simplicity - their clean lines allowing her luxurious fabrics to shine - and her famously flattering figured dresses have been joined by cleverly cut full-skirted dresses that read as separates.
Caroline Kilkenny has used a striking painterly print to stunning effect, with an on-trend Studio 54 vibe running through her jersey pieces, and laser cut trims adding a modern flourish to her tailored separates.
Meanwhile, sister brands Fee G and Luke Lovely continue to impress, with the former’s ultra feminine occasion wear offering a contemporary Mad Men feel in plains and color blocks that team beautifully with the retro charm of Orla Kiely’s boldly patterned bags and accessories, and the latter’s cool tailored animal print coat the star buy from them this season.
With clean lines and classic shapes the order of the day, what all these designers have in common is an understanding that when it comes to embracing opulence in 2016, less really is more.
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