See Inside The Wardrobe Of Emma Kelly: The PR Guru Who Believes Leopard Print Is A Neutral - The Gloss Magazine
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See Inside The Wardrobe Of Emma Kelly: The PR Guru Who Believes Leopard Print Is A Neutral

PR guru Emma Kelly’s love of bold and beautiful things translates to a considered wardrobe filled with homegrown and international designers. She shares the tales behind her best-loved pieces …

Tales From My Wardrobe, a new style series that explores the wardrobes of THE GLOSS community, is a love letter to the pieces we reach for again and again, the hard-earned investment purchases that make us smile with each wear and the items that supercede mere ‘clothing’ to carry memories and foster emotional connection.

MD of Elevate PR Emma Kelly is known for her quirky but considered style. A fan of a flash of colour, with a penchant for supporting indigenous design, the PR guru has a well-honed wardrobe that reads like a greatest hits of Irish and international fashion brands. When she’s not clashing a leopard-print Prada tote with a neon cashmere jumper by Laura Chambers, she’s waxing lyrical about a new interiors piece she’s just nabbed or a great new independent brand she’s discovered. No doubt, Kelly’s passion for beautiful things is catching, and we couldn’t wait to hear about some of her most-cherished wardrobe pieces …

Main image: photography by Eilish McCormick. 

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Kelly is a fan of clutch bags in bold prints and bright colours, although her favourite accessory right now is a Prada leopard-print tote “that goes everywhere with me”. 

The most sentimental item I own is a Pleats Please dress by Issey Miyake. I bought it as maternity wear 20 years ago and wore into the hospital for the birth of my three kids, I still wear it all the time. 

There are some pieces you just wear on repeat. A Stella Nova quilted two-piece, a jacket and culottes, that I found in Gallery 9 Naas is probably my favourite outfit in my wardrobe right now.

I’m mindful of fashion and its impact on the environment. The most recent item I purchased is a Suss Edit orange T-shirt with ruffled sleeves. Wearing bright colours lifts my mood. I am also trying more and more to buy from brands that are committed to sustainability.

Overall, I’m very much in a ‘buy less’ phase of life, although I do have my eye out for a good blazer or jacket. Ideally made in Ireland, so I’m thinking a tweed jacket from Magee or The Landskein.

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A pair of patent flats by Nicki Hoyne takes pride of place in Emma’s accessory collection.

The piece I own that’s paid for itself in cost-per-wear is a Laura Chambers sweater that was my lockdown investment – it’s orange with hot pink stripes. During the pandemic, it was something of a comfort blanket. It was a time when I was determined to support small businesses that produce in Ireland, too.

My most cherished wardrobe investment is a Dries Van Noten skirt (pictured in the main image, above). I had wanted to buy a dress many years ago in the same print, but could not afford it at the time. I love how he reuses archive prints and,  when he reissued that print a couple of years ago, I finally nabbed it in a skirt. 

Generally, I buy most of my clothes on sale, often in Kildare Village. I have also found some great bargains in the Costume and Arnotts sales and in John Rocha sample sales over the years. 

The least ‘fashion’ thing I own that I wear all the time would have to be one of my long-sleeved vests from Intimissimi, I have them in about ten colours.

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I always tend to pick up hidden gems when I go on holidays. I have a large collection of baskets; I seem to buy one on every trip. In Ireland, I’d recommend the new shop at Russborough House for quirky accessories and baskets.

When it comes to accessories, I believe leopard-print is a neutral. I never leave the house without my Prada leopard-print nylon tote that I got in Kildare Village, it’s lightweight and really does carry everything. I am not someone who switches out handbags or has lots of bags on the go so it comes everywhere with me. You can’t go wrong with a good accessory, either: I’m always a fan of cuff bracelets and hairbands.

When it comes to shoes, I’m a trainers and flats fan. I love my Nicki Hoyne Collection shoes and handbags. We have worked on campaigns together for many years; I admire how Nicki has followed her passion into designing vibrant and original shoes with a real point of difference in the market.

You can follow Emma on Instagram (@emmaelevate) here. Got a wardrobe worth sharing? Send us your tales and  imagery to [email protected]

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