[Dublin] Redress Fashion Fearless Forum | Better Fashion Week

Constance Harris

Redress launched their Better Fashion Week on Monday with "Fashion Fearless Forum", an evening to which they invited fashion editor Constance Harris, designer and artist Helen Steele, presenter Brendan Courtney, designers Eimer Ni Mhaol Domhhnaig and Ib Jorgensen and artist David McDermott. I volunteered for the week, and on the night was on Peroni duty with fellow intern Niamh.

The speakers took turns talking about what makes them tick fashion-wise and how they like to dress. I really enjoyed listening to Ib Jorgensen discuss his achievements; Helen Steele's discussion of her transition from art to fashion was really interesting, and I really wanted to speak to her personally but didn't get the chance. I was blown away by her designs in Costume a few weeks ago, and Thread published a really interesting interview about her - she definitely lived up to being the fun and quirky person her designs make her out to be. The vivacious David McDermott entertained all with his take on how to be inspired by the upper class' fashion habits of the past.

Constance Harris made some interesting points about women and identity, and the way fashion can act as interpreter to that process. She talked about the choices we make in colour and impressions we wish to give; that night she was in black, in her words to give her the strength to talk to us all that night. She mentioned the way in which feminism played a role in women paring down their look; in her view, it is a shame women no longer "put their best foot forward". To an extent I agree, but I'm not sure the pressure on women to always look perfect as was in the 1950s was not a taxing one. However, it is perhaps a valid point that the developments in women's liberation introduced aesthetic pressures of their own. I spoke to her a little more on Wednesday night, and I would love the chance to get to the bottom of what she was saying at some point.... Watch this space!

Anyway, my night was cut short when someone knocked a picture frame which fell right onto my head! Half an hour with an ice pack and I was still feeling pretty dazed and confused, so headed early. I have a bump now and a bit of a sore head, which I'll need to get checked at some point - still, nothing like starting the week with a bang!

Rosie, Redress organiser; Helen Steele; and Helen's daughter


  1. Best outfit is worn by the kid in the last photo. Way cool.

    1. yay! is that my friend Rosin? Yeah she was hella colourful that day! :) x