IT'S always wonderful to report on a fashion story with a happy ending. So often readers get in touch to tell of style tragedies clothes that looked wonderful in a photograph but hopeless on the hanger, colours that ran at first wash, or items desperately needed for a special occasion which are seemingly only available in size six and smaller.
That's why it is such a pleasure to quote Catherine Greene, who won a custom made outfit by John Rocha in our recent competition. "I'm absolutely delighted," said Catherine last week when she finally got a chance to try on her silk taffeta fly front coat and matching trousers together with the lacquered cracked silk petunia print shirt.
Nobody wanted to rush preparations, which is why it has taken a month for the prize winner to receive her clothes. At an initial meeting in John Rocha's Temple Bar studios, Catherine first watched a video of the designer's last two shows before going through swatch books and drawings with him. A bio-chemistry research fellow at Trinity College, she says "I'm normally quite casual it's jeans and stuff like that." Catherine's preference therefore was for trousers because she, doesn't as a rule wear skirts, except sometimes in the evening.
Nor indeed has she been a regular buyer of John Rocha's work before now more often than not, she shops at the likes of Miss Selfridge, Oasis and River Island. The pieces she finally settled on are from the current season and "cost much more than I'd usually spend." Even though this was a prize, Catherine opted to choose sensibly each item can be worn independent of the others and the entire ensemble can be dressed both up and down according to her needs.
"I love it I can't wait to wear the whole thing out," commented Catherine when she called down to Temple Bar for the final fitting. I've a cousin getting married in June, so I'll definitely give it an airing for that, but maybe even before then For our picture of Catherine dressed in the latest addition to her wardrobe, we arranged for her to call into Reds on Dawson Street where Michael put her hair up and then onto an appointment with Derval at Make Up For Ever. The eventual result? "My boyfriend was fascinated and amazed he took me out to dinner." Now that's what we call a happy ending.