Thanks Penneys, for your autumn-winter bargains

Penneys offers us a range of standout affordable pieces for the forthcoming season

Take a tour of Penneys’ standout affordable pieces for autumn-winter.

Take a tour of Penneys’ standout affordable pieces for autumn-winter.

 

Landing right now in Penneys’ bigger stores are some standout affordable pieces for autumn-winter. Notable this season are the rich textures and colours, tweedy old school jackets, feminine embellishments of lace, sequins, embroidery and everywhere you look: the colour red.

Velvet skirt €14, boots €25, all from Penneys.
Velvet skirt €14, boots €25, all from Penneys.

“Penneys/Primark imagery has always gone in a very youthful direction, but I wanted to take it in a more elevated direction, in a more grown-up, polished way for a fashion-conscious working woman,” says leading stylist Sinéad Keenan who put these looks together.

Faux fur coat €45, Fairisle jumper €18 from Penneys.
Faux fur coat €45, Fairisle jumper €18 from Penneys.

“She’s the person who doesn’t necessarily fit the festival/party brief but, particularly in the Irish market, is someone who looks for wardrobe staples like denim, trouser suits, tailoring, outerwear and knitwear. My idea was to show all of that and what Penneys has to offer in a fun way but stylish.”

Pink coat €40 and red double-breasted jacket €25, from Penneys.
Pink coat €40 and red double-breasted jacket €25, from Penneys.

Key pieces highlighted at media presentations are often harder to find later in the vastness of the stores with their dizzying rails of clothes. 

Red ruffle coat €40, multicolour scarf €8.
Red ruffle coat €40, multicolour scarf €8.

“I am not a trend person, but there has to be a thread in the story – I don’t like random fashion imagery . . . when you are selling a lifestyle, there has to be a hook – like a way with colour in the knitwear – a shot of colour particularly for autumn/winter when we get so consumed by black, navy and grey. Because it is fun fashion, you can make it look more grown up,” she says.

Faux shearling coat €30, one-shoulder knit €16, cropped jeans €19.
Faux shearling coat €30, one-shoulder knit €16, cropped jeans €19.

Her stylist hand shows in different ways. The dramatic effect of the scarf worn with the bell-sleeved coat, for example, was created by tying two scarves together. Tossing a salmon-coloured coat over the red trouser suit was a way of muting the effect of the red, paring it back.

Faux fur sleeve aviator jacket €35, pink mesh overlay dress €14, cropped jeans €19.
Faux fur sleeve aviator jacket €35, pink mesh overlay dress €14, cropped jeans €19.

The bold biker jacket gets a feminine touch with the addition of a tulle skirt. A colourful oversize sweater dress under a tweed jacket could easily also be worn, she says, with jeans or leggings.

Ruffle coat €40, colour block jumper €18 from Penneys.

Keenan’s impressive track record speaks for itself. An interest in art and design and a strong love of fashion led her to study Fashion and Textile Design at Coláiste Íde after which she attended NCAD to specialise in fashion design. In 1993 she joined the Brown Thomas Visual Merchandising and Display team and she became its inhouse fashion stylist for nearly 10 years responsible for the production and styling of fashion shows as well as directing and styling the store’s commercial and editorial fashion shoots.

Padded zip hem parka €35, cable jumper €20 and sequin clutch €12, all from Penneys.
Padded zip hem parka €35, cable jumper €20 and sequin clutch €12, all from Penneys.

In 2003, she left to spread her wings and to broaden her client list which has included working with Brown Thomas, Louise Kennedy, Chanel, Peter O’Brien (for Arnotts), Avoca, Kildare Village and Carraig Donn to name a few. She has also styled celebrities Jodie Kidd, Donna Air and the Corrs for “MTV Unplugged” and was a contributing stylist on “Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model”.  

Penneys check coat €40, colour block knitted dress €20.
Penneys check coat €40, colour block knitted dress €20.

As to her own style, she says that being a curvier woman, she likes to balance out her own look with chunkier shoes and peg-shaped trousers – usually from Cos.

“I shop around because I don’t fit into a lot, but particularly as you get older, I am confident in my decisions. I know what women would like to see and how Irish women buy so I try to represent that – by mixing from the high street and elsewhere – shopping broadly.” For this shoot, however, she was clear about what she wanted to do: “to see Penneys/Primark in a different light and not just clothes for nightclubs and festivals or shirts for work”.

Photography Eilish McCormick, stylist Sinead Keenan assisted by Alice Coffey, hair Michael Leong, make-up Zoe Clarke, model Emily Muelemann from Elite

The AW 17 Primark Collection is on sale from August to December.

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