My stylish mum and me: Mothers and daughters on each other's style

 Ruth Monahan and daughter Maya Devaney (11). Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Boutique owner Nikki Creedon and her daughter Sophie, 31, a special needs teacher in a Montessori school

Nikki Creedon and daughter Sophie. Photograph: Patrick Bolger
Nikki Creedon and daughter Sophie. Photograph: Patrick Bolger

Nikki on Sophie: “She’s pared back in her style, wears a lot of tailored jackets, jeans and T-shirts, but her big thing is hair and make-up. At 13 or 14 she dressed in tracksuit bottoms, T-shirts, her hair split in the centre and plastered down. We had a lot of fun and games over style. She’s been through miniskirts, boots over the knee, she’s done false tan, the white dresses, the hair Persil white for a long time. She has been through it all. We have had those ‘You can’t go out looking like that’ conversations. She was outrageous. Now she couldn’t be more reversed. She’s a daughter from heaven. She is an angel!”

Sophie on Nikki: “I would always have noticed her shoes. Even at six or seven I remember running up the stairs and out into the muck in them. I never needed any dressing up clothes because I had her wardrobe. She is always put together even out shopping and the way she does it looks so casual – I am so jealous of that ability. When I was 13 or 14 I remember just wanting to be different – and bold. Every Irish girl goes through it. I am a bit late to the party now and don’t care what people think any more. Now I just want to be my mother in every aspect of my life.”

Designer Deborah Veale and daughter Sorcha, 35, who works in business with her

Deborah Veale and her daughter Sorcha. Photograph: Damien Eagers
Deborah Veale and her daughter Sorcha. Photograph: Damien Eagers

Deborah on Sorcha: “Her style is very considered. She wears suits and tailoring quite well but also has an alternative, quirky look too. She has always been her own woman and when she was very young, we had constant battles over clothes. So her aesthetic was very evolved from a young age which is a polite way of putting it. I remember one battle over a pair of boots when she was three from which I am still recovering. She doesn’t look like me, is much daintier and fine boned and knows how to dress for her look and is forensic when it comes to fashion – the devil in the millimetre detail. She got the most amazing buying training and experience working in Primark for nine years.”

Sorcha on Deborah: “Her style isn’t trend led but is one she has had since she was young: simple, sleek and stylish and definitely tailored; her collections reflect that. Her ideas of style and mine are quite different. When I was little, she dressed me in little smock dresses and sweet Laura Ashley and Olilly florals and later 80s-style puffa jackets. I got my own ideas and then it was a transition to awkward teenage style and Spice Girls – Buffalo trainers, combat trousers dragging along the ground and bandeau tops. It was Miss Selfridge and Topshop and army prints. Her style is classic and all about finding the shapes that suit and that’s what I have picked up from her. I love feeling comfortable and empowered even if it is jeans and jackets, and if I feel comfortable in something, I wear it to death.”

Florist Ruth Monahan and Maya Devaney, 11, student

Ruth Monahan and daughter Maya Devaney (11). Photograph: Nick Bradshaw
Ruth Monahan and daughter Maya Devaney (11). Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Ruth on Maya: “She has always paid a lot of attention to detail both in her drawings and in her clothes, and she loves accessories. She got her ears pierced recently and has started playing with make-up, funky socks and boots. She likes quite simple clothes and is not really interested in dresses but makes occasional raids on my wardrobe and loves trying on shoes. She is big into her hair and is quite playful overall and not into logos, fake tan or skintight tops. Her artistic streak is what I love and I really value her independence and confidence in herself.”

Maya on Ruth: “My favourite dress that I really like her wearing is white with red poppies and it’s a long dress and I think it really suits her. She wears big skirts and I really like that. I also really like her shoes and sometimes I try them on. She has these white ones by Nike and they are really nice. I love shopping with her – I love shopping in general – and we go to Brown Thomas, Other Stories and Zara. We are different – I just wear jeans and leggings and I don’t have those big skirts. I have a lot of her old earrings and I love her jewellery and dressing up.”

Susan Ebrill and her daughter Thalia Heffernan, 25, model

Thalia Heffernan with her mum Susan Ebrill. Photograph Nick Bradshaw
Thalia Heffernan with her mum Susan Ebrill. Photograph Nick Bradshaw

Susan on Thalia: “She was an adorable child and I used to dress her in Olilly and then as a teenager she started wearing Hollister trainers and big sweaters. What I most remember was her hair – masses and masses of hair, so I think her fashion sense depended on her hair. She was a tall, skinny, lanky child with this massive hair – photographers would stalk her asking to take her picture. As she got older, she got grungy, wearing jeans, sweatshirts and sweaters – what most kids were doing at the time. Then she got into that secondhand look. She is a confirmed vegan and is now only into buying sustainable things and won’t buy leather, but if she has any leather shoes will keep repairing them until they wear out. She has become a vegan blogger and likes helping young people become vegan with a small store cupboard. She has two lurchers and is completely animal mad. She has recently signed with IMG model agency in New York and is currently waiting for a visa.”

Thalia on Susan: “I have always loved my mum’s style which is quite classic but really cool – she has her J Brand jeans and Acne boots. She has pieces from when she was my age and they are still in mint condition; she looks after things. She perfectly encompasses being a mum and dressing as a mum, but also as a sophisticated young woman. She was always free and liberal and let me wear what I wanted, but I remember also getting a lot of hand-me-downs from both of my sisters – there was a lot of double denim, dungarees and loads of prints. People used to stop her in the street to say how cool her kids were. She has maintained a level of constant coolness and has an amazing way of being stylish.”

Fashion PR Sonia Reynolds on Lily Lyons, 18, student

Sonia Reynolds and Lily Lyons. Photograph: Doreen Kilfeather
Sonia Reynolds and Lily Lyons. Photograph: Doreen Kilfeather

Sonia on Lily: “My first memory of Lily was that I could not dress her because all she wanted was to wear her brother’s clothes – she was such a tomboy! There were only a few occasions when I could get her into something funky and pretty. I have a photo of her in a Bob the Builder jacket, the only way I could get her to wear a coat at 3½ years of age. She dresses in a very considered way and doesn’t run with the crowd. She dresses for herself, is very confident in her body, not a great accessories girl, not into layering, not into trends. She wears jeans with big sweaters and wears everything she buys. That age group sell everything and she buys and sells. If they are going somewhere, they will lend, borrow or buy and sell. She is very organised, can really wear anything if she wants to and has quite a pared back look.”

Lily on Sonia: “When I was young, I remember her style as not something I would see on other mothers at the school. She can put random stuff together and it works. It quite frequently changed – when she started Stable, it became Irish and tweedy and she looked more comfortable and cosy, but at the same time fashionable. I look up to her for her style and admire what she does and obviously there is still a nod in my head at what she wears, but that is my age as I don’t agree with everything. I most like the way she layers really well – leggings with a big skirt and a small turtleneck sweater and headscarf and I love how she can put it together. I wouldn’t be able to look at four items of clothing and know how to put them together. She always looks comfortable and I would describe her style as vivid.”