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Milan & blending Summer & Autumn!

We have just finished showcasing our AW24 Weaving collection at Milano Unica - Europe’s premium fabric show. We are unique in that we have a weaving mill and both finished garment and accessory collections. There are a handful of Italian mills who run a similar business, but we are in the minority. For us it means that we are transcending various seasons at once, which can be a little hectic! While our Weaving team are showing AW24, we are also busy buying fabric from other mills here.. 

It’s an inspiring time; out of the rugged, raw beauty of Donegal and straight into a tradeshow showcasing the finest mills in the world. There’s luxury Italian, traditional British, contemporary Portuguese, wools, cotton, linens, silks, cashmere and alpaca blends, intricate designs featuring sequins and complicated weaves, quirky prints, sustainable fabrics made from everything from recycled bottles to orange peel – this is the mecca if you are into fabric.  



It’s 35 degrees outside so it can be a little hard to put our ‘warm winter’ hat on. Style throughout the show is anything but wintery, linen is everywhere - soft floaty dresses and a lot of blazers in a variety of pale pinks, blues, oats and cream. I am wearing the Aisling oversized shirt in Ivory Irish Linen and Tina trousers in bottle green linen.    



For the mill, planning the AW24/25 collection started in December last year. Mood boards were created, archives & upcoming trends trawled through – colours, designs, fabric compositions & weights, hundreds of yarns are reviewed, sample lengths woven, washed and cut, eventually finding their way to hangers to showcase.  


Colours range from sunset yellow, deep turquoise, Christmas red, deep heather purple to timeless black & white, minke brown, rich camel and varying shades of muted blues. Designs cover the traditional herringbone and Donegal salt & pepper, barleycorn to houndstooth, plaids and modern, detailed checks.  

A focus this year (and in recent years) for many mills has been on natural, undyed wool, linen or cotton. We have introduced a capsule collection of undyed Irish wool in intricate designs for AW24/25. Minke brown, mushroom taupe and sky grey are crossed with off-whites and creams; designs work across classic houndstooth and herringbone to contemporary all-over or block checks and barley corn. 

This week the Weaving mill will go onto Munich for another show, and I will go back to Ireland to work on the AW24 collection. I love this part of the planning process, swatches start arriving in from mills – flannels, cotton, prints, silks, tailoring, to name a few. I spend time in our own mill working through the details for product to start dropping in a year’s time. Our AW23 collections are now arriving in-store and at the back of my mind I start to think about colour trends for SS25… 


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