Sweeping floor-length gowns, backless frocks, and tons of silk and taffeta ignited the grand ballroom at the Shelbourne Hotel last night as Ireland’s most glamorous women congregated to battle it out.
Expertly masking nervy anticipation with beaming smiles and exaggerated air kisses, soap starlets, TV personalities, models and well-heeled businesswomen greeted one another animatedly on the red carpet.
“It’s just fabulous to be in the running for this, we all like a bit of style,” cooed actress and nominee Leigh Arnold, wearing an eye-catching ensemble by designer Helen Cody.
Top model turned TV presenter Glenda Gilson, meanwhile, admitted to having made a special effort for the occasion.
“I went to Brown Thomas and bought this Versace dress specially for tonight,” she chuckled, twirling on a pair of impossibly high heels for added emphasis.
Sporting a stunning creation by the same designer who dressed her for the recent IFTAs, No Frontiers presenter Kathryn Thomas opted for a slate grey dress by Synan O’Mahony.
Almost all of the nominees shortlisted for the awards were present, among them former Miss World Rosanna Davison, Limerick style queen Celia Holman Lee, actress Rachel Kavanagh and a plethora of TV presenters, such as Michelle Doherty, Mary Kennedy, Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh, Gráinne Seoige, Síle Seoige and Lorraine Keane, who wore a magnificent long beaded burgundy gown by Limerick designer Marion Murphy Cooney.
Limerick fashion was well represented on the night, with winner Andrea Roche choosing an ensemble by Fiona White.
Speaking of the style quota, VIP editor Emer O’Reilly-Hyland said; “These are the women we love to look at, who catch the eye of photographers and really know how to work the red carpet.”
But it was not just all about the women on the night.
This year saw the introduction of the Most Stylish Man award, for which the likes of Senator David Norris, TV presenters Mark Cagney and Daithí O Sé and restaurateur Simon Stokes had been nominated.
This year’s Most Stylish Woman walked away with an impressive prize, which included a crystal trophy designed by Louise Kennedy, hair care from Peter Mark, €500 worth of Lancôme products and a weekend in the Penthouse of Aghadoe Heights Hotel.