Ever since I was a little girl I dreamt of being a fashion designer: one of my earliest memories is of me in the playroom of our family home designing a shoe collection, when I was just four years old.
I filled my life with fashion at any possible opportunity. When I was 16, I went to Irish designer John Rocha for work experience during transition year where I spent some time in the design rooms. From the age of 17, I worked in Brown Thomas in various luxury departments, Louis Vuitton and Christian Louboutin to name but a few.
As I grew older my desire to become a designer grew stronger and so it was inevitable that I would choose to study design in art college. I was successfully accepted to Limerick School of Art and Design where I began my journey. However, after a short year at college I became very ill with bacterial meningitis and had no choice but to leave my studies.
I spent the next couple of years working full time in Brown Thomas and I also welcomed my little boy, Finn, to the world. When Finn was one year old, I started to think about design again and soon this was all I could think about. After quickly realising it wasn't possible to go back to college full time, I enrolled in Grafton Academy Dublin part time to fill the gaps in my design knowledge.
In 2017 I created my first collection which focused on complementing the female figure. The garments were made from a neoprene fabric and were adorned with hand-made embellishments that were sewn at the side. I was delighted with the outcome of my debut collection, with the collection being stocked in five boutiques across the country and me placing in the top 10 in the best-dressed ladies’ day event at the Galway Races wearing one of my designs.
Vivienne as a finalist at the Galway Races
After launching my initial collection, 2018 was a quiet year for my brand but a very special one on a personal level as I welcomed my daughter, Harper, to the world. When I was ready to return to work, I focused on a new collection which would be my Autumn Winter 2019 collection.
I travelled to Italy and Paris to find the most exquisite fabrics and began designing the new collection. We held the photoshoot at Carton House, Kildare, with a fantastic photographer, Sasko Lazarov, and one of the best models in the industry, Thalia Heffernan. It was an instant success and helped me establish my name in the Irish fashion industry.
Fast forward a couple of months, and we now have 15 stockists nationwide and counting, two manufacturing locations and a small (but mighty) team.
I am so excited to see what the next few months hold for us.