First Look: Niamh O’Neill AW12
It was while leafing through the September issue of ‘Social and Personal’ magazine that I discovered the creations of new Irish designer Niamh O’Neill.
An honours graduate from the National College of Art and Design, the Co.Louth based designer gained valuable experience in New York and Paris working alongside some of the biggest names in the fashion industry. She began her design career Stateside with Diane Von Furstenberg before returning to Europe to work with John Galliano, Martin Grant and Sharon Wauchob. In 2011 she set up her own label www.niamhoneill.com and has just launched a highly impressive debut collection.
The eight piece capsule collection is inspired by Marlene Dietrich and the screen idols style is clearly evident in the simple, elegant and exquisitely cut garments. The designs are both sophisticated and contemporary with structure and fit being key. Wool crepe features strongly with the designer using the fabric exclusively in dresses, skirts and jackets in a colour palette composed of dark neutrals and vibrant shades – navy, black, fuchsia, marine blue and royal purple. Tailoring dominates a collection where fitted jackets in black and navy create shapely silhouettes and curves are clearly defined in matching pencil skirts. The clean sharp lines are perfectly counterbalanced by decorative elements such as suede and leather bows and pleated grosgrain trims.
A good winter coat is a wardrobe essential and the wool/cashmere collarless ’Bow Tie’ coat with statement belt available in black or purple (€560) would be ideal for upcoming race days. There are echoes of old style glamour in the ultra feminine fuchsia shift dress with signature bow detail (also in blue, €270). With emphasis on versatility Niamh has also designed a sleeved version of this dress thus ensuring an easy transition from desk to dinner.
Prices start at €235 to €560.
Availability: Niamh O’Neill’s A/W 2012 collection is currently available from The Design Centre, Powerscourt Townhouse Centre, Dublin 2 www.designcentre.ie & MacBees Fashion Boutique, New Street, Killarney, Co. Kerry. www.macbees.ie
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