04 Jul 2022

My Week with Celia Holman Lee: My chance to ‘air’ fab local designers

My Week with Celia Holman Lee: My chance to ‘air’ fab local designers

Here I'm pictured with the legendary Mary Hayes from Ela Maria’s in Newcastle West

AT THE beginning of the last season of the RTE Today Show, I received a call from the series producer asking if I would be interested in doing a new segment.
The slot, I was told, would incorporate everything to do with the fashion industry from clothes to jewellery to design. It was a new and exciting challenge which I was thrilled to take on. When thinking about sourcing content for the segment, my first thoughts were in relation to longevity, which, in this industry, can often be challenging. I knew I had to call to Newcastle West to the outstanding Ela Maria boutique.
This store is a family-run business and it was an honour to chat with legendary Mary Hayes who founded the business which is now celebrating 40 years in the square in Newcastle West.
As a young model I always used to love working with the store and I've said it time and time again, my great love of accessories stemmed from these experiences. I also had the pleasure of chatting with Mary's daughters Elaine and Marie who are now at the helm of this very successful business.
When this slot aired on The RTE Today Show it got a wonderful response.
The next slot to air featured my visit to Limerick School of Art and Design who produce renowned and award-winning alumni. I met with some wonderful final year students Becky, Clara and Erica who showed me their fantastic final collections.
We discussed how the fashion design course works including their placements, the mindset needed to succeed and the role of technology in the course which I found so interesting. Lecturer Anne Melinn filled me in on the way things are changing and how some of the jobs students are being trained for don't even exist yet. As Michelle Molloy mentioned, the fashion course is hugely popular and the future is bright for fashion and design in Ireland.
I then travelled to Clare to find out about a hugely successful Irish jewellery business with a twist, Seoidín, which I'm sure many of you are familiar with. Maureen Harrison has a huge love of the jewellery business which she started 25 years ago.
She now has two stores in Ennis, one in Limerick and one in the Skerries in Dublin. It is a hugely recognisable brand in Ireland which is also manufactured in Ireland, making it Irish, through and through. I have been a huge fan of Maureen and Seoidín's jewellery for many years and the Limerick people evidently have also, as their Limerick store is extremely busy.
It was a great honour to chat and work with such hugely influential people in this industry.
If you missed out you can catch them all on the RTE player. I hope you'll enjoy them as much as I did.
Chat next week, Celia xxx

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