Style Notes: Comfy mother-daughter team attire that’s smart

It’s interesting to see how Irish designers are reacting to the new retail landscape and customer attitudes towards what they want in their lives and the novelty they want to introduce into their wardrobe. It was certainly a process – small steps for everyone, on all sides of the fashion equation, from manufacturer to retailer to buyer.

This week I have news that will interest many of our readers, I’m sure. Respected tailoring expert Deborah Veale is launching a new venture with a wide range of flexible, adaptable pieces she designed with her daughter Sorcha, and it will go live on her website next week.

A powerful force when it comes to tailoring hardwearing clothing, Veale is well known in the corporate field and many of the uniforms you see in large corporations and in five-star restaurants were designed by her to last . The mother-and-daughter design team’s concept for their first diffusion line was based on comfortable garments that look chic.


Jumpsuit, €350, from the new Deborah Veale diffusion collection available online. Photo: Barry McCall

Her philosophy of “relaxed, relaxed shapes supported by clean lines and a sleek, sartorial-inspired aesthetic” is perfectly exemplified by the teal and black jumpsuit and slip dress. The one-piece suit has a loose-fitting boat neckline (shoulderless here) with an asymmetrical stripe contrast and wide trouser legs.

The color block dress, on the other hand, has a ’90s vibe with its spaghetti straps and bow at the back, and the empire line silhouette and straight skirt style have a timeless quality. These two items are made from a matte, heavyweight crepe fabric that has a luxurious feel, and I pricked up my ears when I heard how the wrinkle-free fabric can be put in the washing machine, hung up, and will be dry in about two hours . Sounds like holiday hero stuff to me.


Raglan sleeve shrug, €190 Linen cropped trousers, €195 From the new Diffusion collection, available at Photo: Barry McCall

The collection includes 15 different pieces that you can buy online. However, the one-piece suit and slip dress (€350 each) are only made to order, so there is no waste or unsold items at the end of the season – all the better for sustainable fashion. Delivery of pre-orders takes six to eight weeks.

The twin pillars of looking smart without being too formal and feeling comfortable in our clothes, having lived in jersey and sweatshirts for two years, are at the heart of the range and they have created a stylish bridge to more formal workwear .

Working with a heavyweight jersey, they created pieces that stand on their own and also work efficiently together. There is a black dress with contrasting piping and a small cut-out detail at the shoulder line (€275). It’s shapely without being too form-fitting, and the feel-good factor is high, right down to the two small slits on the side that the commute will appreciate.

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Teal top, also available in cream, €175, Photo: Barry McCall

Jersey pieces include a leather-trimmed V-neck collarless jacket (€295) that can be styled with cream or black slouch trousers (€225) or with ankle-zip black leggings (€175), and it is a raglan jersey shrug with sleeves (€190) that goes well with cropped linen pants (€195). At the weekend, the two look cool styled with a bralet top.

Evaluating this new range for immediate and long-term use, the flowing quality of the durable fabrics add to the portability factor. A flowy crepe is featured in a slouch with kimono sleeves, a belted cardigan (€295), a crew neck top with a black stripe on the arm (€170) and a short-sleeved tunic top (€165), available in both cream and Also available in teal.

The most expensive piece in the collection is a jersey coat with nappa leather shoulders (395 euros), the cheapest piece is a skirt (110 euros).

The pieces are available in sizes S (8/10), M (12/14) and L (16/18) and result in casual jersey pants (€225) in XL (20/22).

Make a statement

I love statement earrings, but big earrings inevitably add weight. Not so with Sara Ross’ FiorSó brand in Co Kerry. Sara, a former barrister from Newcastle, England, is self-taught and I don’t know how she does it, but her pieces are feather light.


Coco earrings in black, €165, with 16k gold plating, brass and enamel, from Photo: Patrick McHugh

Their brand name is a fusion of for, Meaning real/true and so, means luxury. Sara’s ormolu, brass and enamel Deco collection includes the ‘Clara’the very architectural “Coco” earrings (€165) and the “Claudette” tiered fan earrings (€195).

Pearl lovers should check out the ‘Calla Lily’ hook earrings, in which a delicately carved 14k gold filled ball wraps protectively around a Swarovski pearl (€205) available in a range of colours.


Clara earrings, €165, Deco Collection, Photo: Patrick McHugh

However, after meeting Sara for a chat, it was her super lightweight ‘Reverie’ earrings with fully blooming cherry blossoms or Himalayan poppies (€245) delicately suspended from a 14k gold-filled, adjustable threading chain that got me hooked .

Each piece is cut from sheet metal, filed, polished and hand painted with layers of colored enamel. The effect is stunning and the earrings just seem to float out of your ear. Style Notes: Comfy mother-daughter team attire that’s smart

Fry Electronics Team

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