Ciaras Closet donates 10% of Debs dresses sales to Focus Ireland during August


Limerick boutique, Ciara’s Closet, has announced that they will be donating ten percent of their profits from the sale of their Debs dresses to the Midwest branch of Focus Ireland, for the month of August. Focus Ireland is a non-profit organisation that provides services for people who are homeless and people at risk of homelessness.

Ciara’s Closet is located at Unit 3 Bellfield House on the Ennis Road, directly across from the Strand Hotel. The Limerick boutique offers a range of beautiful dresses for sale or hire. Their clothing ranges from elegant evening wear to bridal, to bridesmaid’s dresses to Debs, suitable for women of all ages.

Pictured at the Ciara’s Closet August Fundraising Initiative for Focus Ireland are Richard Lynch, founder of, Demelza Morrissey, Ciara’s Closet, Focus Ireland Ambassador Celia Holman Lee, Aoife Sheehan, Midwest Fundraising and Marketing Executive for Focus Ireland and Miss Clare 2019 Emma Austin. Picture: Conor Owens/ilovelimerick.

Dee Morrissey, Ciara’s Closet, said, “We decided to take part in this initiative in honour of our one-year anniversary. We are delighted to be supporting Focus Ireland, a service that provides endless support to those who are homeless or those who may face homelessness.”

Celia Holman Lee, Focus Ireland Ambassador, visited Ciara’s Closet to support this great initiative.

Celia said, “As an official ambassador for Focus Ireland, I am so honoured to support Ciara’s Closet in raising invaluable funds that will be donated to ease the trauma of homelessness that Irish families are currently going through each day.”

Aoife Sheehan, Midwest Fundraising and Marketing Executive for Focus Ireland, said, “According to a recent study carried out by Focus Ireland, the rate of homelessness in Limerick is increasing at an alarming rate with 265 adults currently without a home. There are 1,700 families homeless in Ireland today and this number is growing. In Limerick, Focus Ireland provides prevention and housing advice, support services for families, support services for young people, short and long-term housing, and research-based services. We are thrilled that Ciara’s Closet has decided to support us and we are urging any young lady who is looking to buy a Debs dress, to visit Ciara’s Closet during the month of August.”


For more information on Ciara’s Closet, go here.

For more information on Focus Ireland, go here.

For more Richard Knows News, go here.

John McNamara Achievement Award winner is announced at the Hunt Museum – Pictured in front row: model Siobhan Ni Hifearnain, Darren Kennedy, TV Presenter, model Hannah Holden, Michelina Stacpoole, Knitwear Designer, Catherine Bourke, Fiona Whyte, Fashion Designer, winner Jane Eglington, LSAD, Celia Holman Lee, Richard Lynch and Sinead Clohessy,  Specsavers Limerick. Picture: Dolf Patijn/ilovelimerick.

John McNamara Achievement Award winner is announced and his exhibition opened at The Hunt Museum, Limerick

Thursday, April 6, The John McNamara Exhibition, celebrating some of the outstanding fashion creations of the late Limerick fashion designer, was formally opened by Senator Maria Byrne, at a glamorous event at the Hunt Museum and will run for three weeks until Sunday, April 30.

Many well-known faces attended the event including Irish Television Presenter and Style Entrepreneur Darren Kennedy, style icon Celia Holman Lee and fashion designer Marion Murphy Cooney.  

John McNamara Achievement Award

The John McNamara Achievement Award trophy was designed by Paul McNamara, nephew of John McNamara, from an original sketch, John did many years ago.

The exhibition was opened with the announcement of the winner of the John McNamara Achievement Award honouring the designs of new fashion designers, sponsored by Specsavers Limerick. The judges were Catherine Bourke who was John’s assistant for almost three decades, knitwear designer Michelina Stacpoole and fashion designer Fiona Whyte. They faced a tough decision trying to choose the winner from the six talented fashion design students attending Limerick School of Art and Design, Limerick College of Further Education, and Mallow School of Fashion and Tailoring.

The winning designer was student Jane Eglington from Rochestown in Cork, who has just graduated from Limerick School of Art and Design. Her winning designs were inspired by her experiences in Morocco and the craftsmanship of hand-woven tapestries she found on her travels. She said, ‘I am honoured as John McNamara was an amazing Irish and Limerick fashion designer and he went to the same college as me. I am humbled that his fellow designers who judged the award felt that something in my work reflected his aesthetic.”

 John McNamara, from South Circular Road in Limerick, died in 2015. He graduated in fashion from the Grafton Academy Dublin and Kingston University London and was regarded as one of Ireland’s most talented designers with an eye for glamour and tailoring. John worked with fashion supremo Ib Jorgenson in Dublin for many years, and then returned to his native Limerick where he set up his own workshop. His many clients included President Mary Robinson who commissioned John to design one of her inauguration outfits.

 “John was a great supporter of young talent, organising the annual International Colleges’ Fashion event in recent years in Limerick. It is a pleasure for Specsavers Limerick to be sponsors of the Achievement Award in his name,” said Sinead Clohessy of Specsavers Limerick.

 “The exhibition which runs until April 30, will give those attending an idea of the magnificent designs John did for his many clients,” said style queen Celia Holman Lee one of the organisers of the exhibition and one of John’s closest friends. “On display will be examples of wedding and glamorous day and evening wear,” she added.

 And while some designers may be of the “no pain, no gain” train of thought when it comes to fashion design, it’s refreshingly obvious that John McNamara’s design brilliance came from the fact that his work was more about keeping in tune with his client’s lifestyle needs than just what was in fashion, in any particular season. John’s stunning couture garments are a favourite among fashion lovers in Limerick and further afield.

 The John McNamara Exhibition runs at the Hunt Museum until Sunday, April 30.

 For further information, contact Naomi O’Nolan, Head of Exhibition and Collection at [email protected].

For more information on the Hunt Museum click here

For more on John McNamara click here