I find with this blog, although I regularly advocate Dublin fashion, I indulge and make the most of it much less so. I decided yesterday as I was reading reviews of Milan fashion week, that it was time I went out for a bit of a Dublin fashion therapy. Choosing to visit my usual haunts as well as some more traditional shops, I wanted to get a feel of what Dublin fashion means right now.
The first thing I wanted to do was look at traditional Irish style, you know like decades old-traditional. Nassau St. for example, is full of shops catering for loaded tourists, selling ‘traditional’ Irish wares but there are also one or two more interesting shops. One of them is Kevin & Howlin, Irish Tweed specialists, (est. 1936). I went in and I’m almost sure there was a little bell sound over the door as I crossed the threshold into… well 1936 I suppose. It’s crammed with gentleman’s things, like Trilbys and canes and tweed suits (yeah, really…) and I rather pathetically enquired, “ladies?”. I’m half convinced the man behind the glass counter thought I need the loo or something, anyway after ascertaining that I did in fact mean ladies-wear he pointed to a few rails in the middle of the shop floor.
I love Tweed, I actually think it’s quite glamorous when it’s tailored in the right way, and no I don’t necessarily mean a Chanel suit either. I mean the hunting and horse-riding country pursuits and shooting jackets, type tweed in ‘heather’ colours. Unfortunately it’s still pretty darn expensive, a fact I was utterly unaware of until yesterday. Even in the sale, jackets at Kevin & Howlin, were priced from €280. If I did emoticons, I would insert a sad face here. Anyway, regardless of the price, or it’s ‘durable’ qualities I still love it and according to Wikipedia, “indigenous plants such as blackberries, fuchsia, gorse and moss provide dyes” for Donegal Tweed which is pretty romantic I reckon.
So no new Tweed for me then; I took a few snaps on my way out and am resigned to hunting for vintage pieces instead. Besides I have a Scottish-Tweed jacket from the 1940’s which is divine – (What I Wear post to follow I think). Afterwards I went next-door-but-one, to Blarney Woollen Mills. I was a bit sad to see that it was closing down. The sale is pretty good though, wool coats are reduced from €400 – €75 etc. There were also some unusual Merino Aran-knit shrug type things that I was quite tempted by but, I decided that I had more tasty fish to fry yesterday. Off I dawdled to Temple Bar and to two vintage shops on Upper Fownes Street, Sharpe’s Ville and the utterly fantastic Lucy’s Lounge. The first is small but has masses of stuff for men, the latter is my favourite place to shop in Dublin.
The key with shopping at Lucy’s lounge is making sure that you have time. As with many vintage shops, making the most of shopping here means time is essential; The more minutes you have, the greater the likelihood of grabbing a fabulous piece of sartorial history. From shoes to bags; scarves to coats; skirts to shirts and jewellery to dresses, dresses, dresses. I tried on loads of things and bought an amazing 70’s maxi-dress (top picture and below) for €30. I’ve also posted a few pictures of the shop itself, they’re not the best and don’t do the place justice at all but you get a general idea.
On my way home I nipped into a charity shop or two and bought two books; one is a collection of rare photographs of the Rolling Stones and the other concentrates on the style of David Bowie. I also found this vintage Austrian wool cape, €10, I’ve paired it here with leather trousers.
More style photographs and all outfit details at Herapparel.wordpress.com