Ciara Monahan designs fashion that can't be overseen and turn every day into a beach party. Fearless, she plays with colours, tropical elements and bold shapes. Ciara's fashion is a tropical cocktail of creativity and spreads a lot of fun. Her designs are heavily influenced by pattern and quirky silhouette and often come with laser cut 3D perspex embellishments.
Ciara Monahan is a London-based fashion and accessory designer who graduated form Middlesex University in 2013. When she started her career as a fashion designer, she did internships with a few of the very best designers such as Mary Katrantzou, Tatty Devine and Julien Macdonald. Her collection was showcased at the Berlin Alternative Fashion week, and her designs are the best friends for festivals.
Her last collection is called "There is no place like gnome" and it's inspired by the story of the little gnome in the movie Amelie. He travels around the world, collects funny souvenirs. In the end, he discovers Ciara's tropical paradise and parties with flamingos there. This is the sweetest story a fashion collection ever came with, isn't it?
This girl will climb very, very far on the rainbow ladder for sure!
Enjoy the interview I did with this fabulous gal:
Interview with Ciara Monahan
Ciara, your fashion is extraordinary colourful, quirky and full of fruits. Where do you find your inspiration for your quirky pieces?
Oh god, everywhere! I’ve been lucky enough to live in London for the past eight years, which has only provided me with a wealth of weird and wonderful situations and beings that inspire a variety of ideas. I could probably write a book on all the mad things that happen here. I’m like a magpie when it comes to really weird kitsch objects though, these things are forever stopping me and holding my attention in the street, in other people’s houses or parties and also any exhibitions I get to have a good look around. Although saying all this, my last collection was inspired by a trip I took to Bali. That place was just the epitome of a colour-filled paradise, and that influenced my work in a big way.
Do you dream of fruits from time to time?
They do tend to pop up in my life a lot. I went to Glastonbury Festival and, to change things up from the usual pineapple way of life, I decided to wear a lot of banana themed items for the week…and I kept finding them EVERYWHERE. It was like I was being stalked by them. Inflatable bananas, people dressed as bananas, banana paintings, just couldn’t escape them! Oh, also it’s not particularly a fruit but I’m getting increasingly drawn to aubergines! That deep purple colour is just so enticing, I want to dive into it (plus I just love the sound of the word, it’s really pleasing to say).
Some people would say that your pieces are not wearable, I think it's what a girl dreams of wearing everyday. What do you think, where do you see a pretty girl going with one of your wild and fruity looks?
I can imagine a lot of my designs being paraded around at a variety of music festivals. I, myself, am a self-diagnosed festival addict and love to dress up even more than usual at these things. I see festivals as places where people strip back any judgement they feel standard society has on them and lets them portray their true selves, it’s kinda like letting your spirit animal loose! My clothes are there to embrace this freedom and just make people feel happy when they’re wearing them. LOVE that you’d happily wear my designs to the supermarket! It would be great to see them being rocked along the streets of London too, and hopefully in time this will become more of a thing. This is a city where you can wear what you want and express who you are without pressures to conform to certain ideals, and lets face it who doesn’t like wearing a lot of fruit and animals? It’s the only way of life non? I’m pretty sure there’s some scientific proof it makes you happier and live longer…
I saw a video of you dancing with the models on the catwalk and read that you love festivals. What music fits your fashion best in your opinion?
It’s hard to pin down a particular genre of music to my designs in general as I find different songs go with different collections, plus I listen to a larrrge range of stuff. I guess in the end it’s a song that just makes people want to get up, dance and feel like they’re part of the collection coming down on the catwalk. Anything with a really awesome beat does the job nicely!
If there would be a book about your life as a fashion designer, what would be the title of it?
‘How Carmen Miranda Got Lost In Coco Cabana and other such stories’
It would be a ridiculous book.
Let's have a look into the future: What secret plans you have for your label and can we expect more quirkiness on the catwalk from you?
I’m currently working on the next collection which, in all honesty, is going to be as much of a surprise to myself as it is to everyone else! I have original concepts and the collections take so many twists and turns throughout the design process that I always end up creating something I never even saw coming, which is just the best thing about the whole journey really! I can tell you that there will be a range of more ‘wearable’ clothes that can be worn to festivals and of course on many a-colourful supermarket trip, but that’s not to say they’re gonna loose out on any colourful quirkiness! I’m going all out!
Thank you very much for the interview Ciara and keep on living your pineapple way of life!
Visit Ciara Monahan's page here and don't forget to follow her on Facebook.