Galway was where Graham (GG) and I first started going out, so it has a special place in my heart. I couldn’t leave him behind when I headed west for my first Galway Fashion Trail. I had been invited by ITWBN (Into the West Bloggers Network for those of you who don’t know) to be one of about twenty bloggers involved. It was nearly impossible to get accommodation: Galway was teeming with Irish (it was half-term) and overseas tourists still, but luckily we finally got a room in The Connacht. Note to self… book accommodation well in advance in future!
As a VIP…..yes, very important person, my first stop was the Colm Quinn BMW dealership, where I had great fun lusting after some incredible cars, meeting other bloggers and indulging in a super breakfast banquet. Then I was whisked into a 7 Series beemer, chauffeured by Barry and we literally hit the town, horns blaring, in convoy (is that only trucks… I need a much sleeker name for BMWs).
Galway was buzzing. Between 11 and 5 o’clock, we visited a total of eight shops; each one hosted a fashion show, prosecco and other goodies were on offer to all and most had discounts to entice also. To say I was blown away by what Galway had to offer was an understatement.
Our first stop, Colette Latchford www.colettelatchfordgalway.ie stocked some of my favourite labels Marella and Marc Cain and some others new to me such as Onjenu. There were many fabulous dresses and a particularly vibrant jumpsuit and if you are in the market for a top quality coat, you might find what you are looking for here.
Greene’s shoes www.greenesshoes.com, celebrating 25 years in business, was a hive of activity and is clearly a favourite among the locals. They stock many well-known labels, from Gabor and Marco Tozzi to Amy Huberman and Fly London. The accessories below are all from The Galway Hat Shop, where we headed to next and had great fun trying out the fabulous selection for ourselves. Our one male blogger Frankie was delighted to be able to try out some too, as the shop carries a good selection of hats for men also!
And so to The Treasure Chest www.treasurechestgalway.ie where 50 years in business was being celebrated and what treasure was to be found in there. This is a one-stop-shop for fashion, gifts, linen, pottery and whatever you are having yourself. I could have easily spent the entire day there. Stocking a variety of labels, there is something to everyone’s taste and style here, no matter what your age. We also got to see milliner Suzie Mahony’s www.suziemahonydesigns.ie stunning hats and some of award-winning, new designer Colin Burke’s amazing show-stopping creations.
Willow www.willow.ie was another jewel in Galway’s crown. Here you can find an eclectic mix of labels to suit a variety of tastes and prices to suit every pocket. If you are looking for something a little different or quirky drop in here.
Rococo www.rococo.ie after lunch and again there was much to entice, but alas no time to try on. Here my eyes were drawn to a Rene Derhy dress for €198.
Now Choice www.choice.ie is a shop that I know quite well as there are branches here in Dublin, but if I am being honest, I haven’t visited for a few years as I found the stock a little too safe. I was pleasantly surprised, indeed amazed by what I saw as a much more modern approach in design, while still catering for their original customer. In fact, I bought the Mulberry-inspired bag seen here, under €30, which will be perfect for traipsing around the shops over the next few months.
And so to Kilkenny www.kilkenny.ie the shop, not the place!!! And what a beautiful welcoming space they have. The shop was already decked out in Christmas style and we were treated to more wonderful fashion ‘topped’ off with hats by @crevationdesigns. Another treat was ‘in-store’ for us here when we were each gifted a Dyrbergkern ring, which will arrive in the post in the next few weeks!
And finally to Harper www.harper.ie where we were wowed with a wonderful selection of cocktail and evening dresses where the heavenly head attire and beaded collars were supplied by Brid O’Driscoll www.bridodriscoll.ie. I saw a Badgley Mischka dress which I had bought for my older daughter as a birthday and new Mum present €30 cheaper than I had paid in Dublin, so I can only assume the prices are competitive.
Foot-weary, we headed to The Front Door pub for an after-party. (A future post will cover the culinary and social aspects of the weekend)
Galway is the city where I lost my heart, now I realise it’s a city to shop till you drop too!