10 Irish fashion designers getting noticed abroad

The Creating and Designing gallery at EPIC tells the stories of influential designers, like Sybil Connolly and Philip Treacy, who began to make their mark on the world of fashion long ago.

Right now, lots of talented Irish designers continue to make an impact internationally. Some have left Ireland to seek out success abroad, while others are attracting attention from their Irish studios.

So, to celebrate #IWD2021, we want to highlight ten Irish women who are gaining global recognition for their work.


1. Laura Weber

In January, Dublin native and NCAD graduate Laura Weber hit the headlines after Dr. Jill Biden wore her work to the US presidential inauguration. Weber embroidered her dress, coat and mask, carefully positioning each stitch, bead and colour. At the request of the first lady, each flower on the dress was designed to represent a different state.

This wasn’t the first time the New York-based designer’s work was seen by millions of people. Over the years, she has also created embellishments for Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Bette Midler and former first lady Michelle Obama. She also made the green sequin dress that Saoirse Ronan wore to the Oscars back in 2016.

Right now, Weber is working on a line of luxury athleisure and face masks.


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2. Hope Macaulay

On the cover of this month’s GQ magazine, tennis champion Naomi Osaka can be seen posing in a chunky knitted cardigan designed by Hope Macaulay.

The young designer, who is from county Antrim, isn’t long out of college but her colourful, handmade knitwear has already become a hit with celebrities like Halsey and the Hadid sisters.

Mcaulay told The Belfast Telegraph that she experimented with knitting in college after her grandmother taught her the basics. Today, all of her clothes are manufactured in Northern Ireland with the help of local seamstresses.


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3. Orlagh McCloskey

Along with Henrietta Rix, Derry native Orlagh McCloskey runs the London-based womenswear label RIXO. Their unique prints have featured in Vogue and Marie Claire. Last month, they also launched their first vintage-inspired bridal collection in front of buyers and the press at London Fashion Week.

To date, their designs have proved popular with celebrities like Holly Willoughby and they can be found at boutiques and department stores dotted around the globe. But having been tipped as ‘ones to watch’ by