Four big secrets of well-dressed women
Stylish Irish women including Rozanna Purcell and Vogue Williams spill the beans
Clockwise from bottom left, gold block heels, €114 from Topshop; Victoria by Victoria Beckham printed shirt, €365 at Brown Thomas; Isabel Marant Étoile faux leather trousers, €190; H&M beaded Kimono, €79.99; Penneys check coat, €40
Sonya Lennon. Photograph: Andres Poveda
Roz Purcell. Photograph: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
We all know that one person whose clothes are always freshly ironed and who exudes elegance from top to toe. It’s hard to pinpoint what makes a woman stylish. Is it a vast, amazing wardrobe complete with high- and low-end pieces like that of Olivia Palermo? Or is it a signature uniform that is hers and hers alone? Or, does it simply come from the inside, a je ne sais quoi that oozes from collar to hemline?
We asked some stylish Irish women for the items of clothing that help them to stay on top of the fashion game. Read on for insider secrets and the clothing that will have you looking and feeling your best.
Start from the bottom
Shoes can really set the tone for an outfit, and in the words of Coco Chanel: “A woman with good shoes is never ugly.” Simply put: heels elevate your look – literally and physically. Stylist Sonya Lennon says, “My own personal style fixation is always shoes. I rarely buy black and try to seek out statement heels in terms of colour and styling.” But don’t sacrifice comfort for style. Lennon says, “I now know the optimal heel height to add to my towering 5ft 2in stature. Foot pain is never stylish.”
Hunt for a treasure
Finding a one-of-a-kind buy for your wardrobe should be part of your shopping ethos. The best outfits always have an unexpected element, whether it’s a quirky find or a twist achieved with individual styling. A major key to everyday style success is to have something unique rather than trying to have something on-trend that every other woman has.
Model and author Rozanna Purcell agrees: “The piece of clothing I get the most compliments about is a blouse I picked up in the vintage section of Om Diva [in Dublin]. Every time I wear it I get so many people asking where it’s from.”
While many stylish women might claim they #wokeuplikethis, there is always a small amount of planning involved. Plan what you are going to wear the night before, or as you are getting ready in the morning.
Model and TV presenter Vogue Williams says: “I always have something in mind, whether it’s trousers or a dress, and I go from there. It sounds weird but I already know what I’m wearing tomorrow.”
And her go-to item to plan ahead with? “My leather trousers. I love them because they’re really versatile and can make an outfit really cool.
“I get a lot of compliments on them, because once you find a really good-fitting pair, everyone wants to know where you got them.”
It is often the first item people see when they meet you, so a chic coat is the top of a the sartorially sound’s wish list. You will wear your coat more often than almost anything else in your wardrobe, so it needs to be comfortable, practical, flattering and stylish. Stylist Ingrid Hoey says, “Sometimes a great jacket or coat is all you need to pop over the simplest of looks. I’ve an IRO deep-blue jacket that I bought years ago and it still serves me well. It looks equally as nice over jeans and trainers or glammed up.”
Stylist Courtney Smith agrees: “Considering we live in Ireland and usually don’t have great weather, a kimono or coat, is the perfect item of clothing to have as a statement piece.”