For #LimerickTagged LSAD360 over 20 leading Irish and international fashion media and influencers came to Limerick for a showcase of Limerick’s fashion industry. The event was organized by Asta, Cecile and Celia from The Holman Lee Agency in association with Laura Ryan from Limerick City and County Council’s Office of Communications & Marketing. Picture: Brian Arthur.

#LimerickTagged 2017 was trending as number one in Ireland on Twitter on Thursday, May 11th beating the Eurovision and the visit of Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall to Ireland.

The aim of #LimerickTagged was to promote Limerick as a fashion, food and lifestyle destination.

Over 20 leading Irish and international fashion media and influencers converged on Limerick for 24 hours for a showcase of Limerick’s fashion industry, highlighting independent boutiques, designers, and young fashion design talent. Limerick City collaborated with LSAD to plan the day, the first time an Irish city has hosted such a happening. 


Richard Lynch, I Love Limerick, James Kavanagh, Social Influencer and Snapcat star, Sharon Tucker, Sharon’s Secrets and Sinead O’Brien, Sinead’s Curvy Style pictured at House Limerick for the #LimerickTagged event. Picture: Cathal Frawley

The event organised to raise Limerick’s fashion profile by the Holman Lee Agency in association with Limerick City and County Council’s Office of Communications & Marketing welcomed Michelle Newman, staff editor of Women’s Way; Aisling O’Loughlin from; Sybil Mulcahy from; Aine O’Donnell from; Brendan Courtney & Sonya Lennon design duo, Paula Lenihan, editor of RSVP Magazine; Jennifer Stevens, editor of Irish Country Magazine; Roxanne Parker, fashion stylist; Louise Cooney, fashion, lifestyle & travel blogger;  James Kavanagh, snapchat influencer and entrepreneur; Lauren Arthurs, fashion, lifestyle & travel blogger; Maria Walsh, former Rose of Tralee and events manager for Workbench; Zoe O’Connor, fashion blogger; Sinead O’Brien, fashion blogger; Sharon Tucker, fashion blogger; Richard Lynch, founder of I Love Limerick and Gemma Williams from Vogue Italia.

The day’s proceedings started with brunch at HOUSE Limerick showcasing Limerick boutiques/ fashion stores, jewellery and accessories on models from the Holman Lee Agency. The guests of #LimerickTagged were treated to amazing goodie bags sponsored by, Skechers Ireland, Newbridge Silverware, Keanes Jewellers, Brown Thomas Limerick, Matthew Stephens, Ryan’s Jewellery, Limerick Strand Hotel, Tadhg Kearney, Adare Manor, Shannon Heritage, Serendipity Shoe Boutique, The Lily Store, O’Donnell’s Boutique and Shannon Airport which offered return flights from Shannon to Stockholm as a prize for the best tweet.

Following on from Brunch, the day continued with High Fashion Afternoon Tea and a Munster Designer showcase in The Savoy Hotel, where guests sampled magnificent creations from Chef De Partie Graeme Campbell accompanied by a glass of prosecco. Laura Ryan, Head of Communications/Marketing, Limerick City and County Council explained to guests about Limerick’s long history as a fashion hub, the legacy of Limerick Lace and fashion manufacturing in the city.

Next stop was TED’s Bar &Venue for nibbles and cocktails and a mini display of Holman Lee Agency models wearing award-winning Avant Garde hair pieces from Hugh Campbell Hair Group.


Laura Ryan pictured with Cecile, Celia and Asta from the Holman Lee Agency.

The day culminated with Limerick School of Art & Design, LIT, presenting the LSAD 360 Fashion Show at The LSAD Gallery. Recently named in the top 100 fashion schools in the world, the LSAD fashion department, and the graduate degree is the largest fashion degree programme in Ireland and has launched the careers of some of Ireland’s top designers like Joanne Hynes. Twenty of this year’s talented graduates showcased their unique creations at the LSAD360 Fashion Show, which had an international twist, as a number of the graduates had returned from exciting intercontinental work placements with Marc Jacobs, New York, Manish Arora, India and Lever Couture, Berlin.

Ms Williams, who hopes to feature some of Limerick’s rising talent in an upcoming issue of Vogue Italia, has attended the LSAD360 fashion show for the past three years.

She said she has been “very impressed” with the talent emerging from the school. “There have been some really interesting talents and I think it’s really putting Limerick on the map, so it’s very exciting. I think Limerick has a really interesting niche in the market at the moment,” she told the Limerick Leader.

“What really comes through is the sense of community in the best possible way,” enthused Ms Lennon. “The whole fashion industry in Limerick has really pulled together to create a really extraordinary event.”

Mr Courtney added: “Limerick really has it. The love affair begins. LSAD has really clawed its way to the top of the ladder, and I think that it’s generally conceded that it is the most innovative fashion college in Ireland.”

Mike Fitzpatrick, Head of Faculty at Limerick School of Art and Design: “The LSAD Graduate Fashion Show 2017 is a wonderful opportunity to witness the outstanding talent that is synonymous with Limerick School of Art and Design. The award winning designs showcased in our wonderful church gallery will offer a unique insight into the high standards of their work over the past four years as they embark on their exciting careers on the International Fashion stage.”

2016 was another hugely successful year for LSAD students who won; The Student Designer of the Year Award at The Fashion Innovation Awards, The Future Makers Student of the Year Award, IDI Graduate Designer Award (fashion category), People To Watch, Irish Times, (Michael Stewart) and the AIB/IFIL Work Bursary Award, (three month full time work placement with London-based Irish designer Richard Malone.)

Laura Ryan, Head of Marketing/Communications, Limerick City and County Council said, “Limerick’s love affair with fashion is internationally recognised. We’re delighted to feature the work of locally based designers, independent retailers based in the city and the young designers emerging from LSAD many of whom go on to work in fashion houses around the world. It’s a unique collaboration between a local authority and LSAD to market Limerick as a fashion destination and we’re delighted to have so much interest already in the day. We’re blessed to have such a fantastic Ambassador like Celia Holman Lee and her agency coordinating the day’s activities for us and we’re sure that our visitors will have a fantastic experience of what promises to be a really fun and entertaining visit to Limerick.”

Model agent Celia Holman Lee said the logistics of putting the event together took months, and the organisers hope to hold a second event in county Limerick later this year.

For more fashion stories 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