2017 VIP Style Awards – the red carpet


It may be 10pm on a Friday night, and I may be on a two-night break away with my other half, but it's also the night of the 2017 VIP Style Awards – so I must take some time out of my busy romantic getaway to report on the "style" (ahem). Every time I partake in any sort of "fashion police" segment (related to the 2017 VIP Style Awards or otherwise), I get criticised for doing what I, myself, object to: tearing other women down. So I would like to state, for the record, that criticism of a person's wardrobe choices is not a criticism of that person – clothes may make the man (or woman), but they are not one and the same, and I mean no malice in my carefully thought out critique.

It should also be said: as I sit here, on a leather Chesterfield in front of an open fire, in my Nike leggings and an oversized wool jumper from Asos, that of course I am the perfect person to criticise these style mavens. If not me, then who?!

2017 VIP Style Awards – my top three

Sometimes it can be tough to distinguish the style from the sequins – and on this, like on every Irish red carpet, there were a lot of sequins. But there were actually a lot of outfits that stood out to me for all of the right reasons, starting with...

Exquisite.ie's Aisling O'Loughlin looked incredible. I would go so far as to say that I think Aisling is one of the very few Irish "celebrities" who loves and understands and appreciates fashion – and by "fashion", I don't mean rented dresses and Zara blazers. Yes, sometimes she gets it "wrong", at least in the eyes of the public (I loved this Natalie B Coleman dress, for example, while others did not), but she always takes chances and you can always see an homage to haute couture in her looks (today's, for example, nods heavily to Dolce & Gabbana).

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When it comes to taste in clothing, fellow blogger Rosie Connolly and I don't have a huge amount in common – we just have very different styles. But this bespoke suit by Embe Couture is a super slick look for her. If I had to be super picky, I would lose the clutch and the silver shoes and go with a kind of grungier cross-body bag (maybe a YSL with a chain?) and a pair of brogues or shoe boots, but that's probably just about where our styles diverge! She looks very cool.

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I always find it baffling how few Irish celebrities wear Irish designers on the red carpet, although the last few years have seen a definite shift (I put it down to that day Sarah Morrissey blew everyone out of the water in vintage Peter O'Brien) – and here's Holly White, flying the flag for Irish designers (albeit London-based) in Simone Rocha. Also loved her hair, makeup and tan which, for once (for an Irish sleb on a red carpet) wasn't totally tango. Major props.

2017 VIP Style Awards – the hair-raiser

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Holly Carpenter cut her hair (for the 2017 VIP Style Awards?) – and I love it. Not to mention the fact that I've always loved a short dress on a young woman doing the red carpet. I would have liked to see this dress with a different pair of shoes – maybe a bright colour, or even black? – but in general, I like it. It's fun and interesting without being insane, and it's not a sequined mermaid gown. So, y'know, douze points.

2017 VIP Style Awards – the slam dunk

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I truly believe that, at least in the past five years, Pippa hasn't made a single style misstep. This is no exception: it's chic and it fits her perfectly and the monochrome is very cool. Perhaps the Oscars have spoiled me, but I do wish she'd handed her bag to someone (what, Irish celebs at the 2017 VIP Style Awards don't have PAs?) and I always prefer a down 'do to an updo, but we're splitting hairs. I approve.

2017 VIP Style Awards – the mould-breaker

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In the spirit of busting out of comfort zones and surprising people, this Julie Caulfield gown on Suzanne Jackson has to be a winner. It's weird because, when I first saw this dress, I wasn't sure about it – then I realised that it's probably the first gown I've seen at tonight's awards that I'd actually wear. I think it's cool and it's surprising and the print is fun – plus, it's very red carpet. Y'know what I'm sick of, though? That Hollywood wave. I long for some undone hair.

2017 VIP Style Awards – honourable mentions

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Lisa Cannon – once again, not looking in any way like a woman who should be representing Weight Watchers (eyeroll) – looks incredible.

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Tara O'Farrell could not look like she's having any more fun in this 1970s-style jumpsuit – and actually, I think it's very her. I'd like to see a full commitment to the 70s in the hair and makeup (maybe Charlie's Angels style Farrah hair), mind you, but maybe it needed an adherence to modern times to avoid looking like a costume. I like.

2017 VIP Style Awards – the duds

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By the internet reaction, everyone loved Jennifer Zamparelli's jumpsuit – and maybe I'm just mad at her for changing her name, but it just doesn't do it for me for this event. I love the style (obviously) but tonight, I dunno, this is leaving me cold.

There is no fighting the fact that Lisa Jordan has possibly the most incredible body in Ireland, but this jumpsuit-slash-dress-slash-tux is doing nothing for me. I'm not digging the colour and I just think there's too much going on.

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Ordinarily, I think Louise Cooney has this whole style thing sussed, in a very high-fashion-blogger kinda way, but this outfit I just do not get. Is it a wedding dress, Boohoo-style? Are those nude shoes? (I hate nude shoes.) I am also 99% sure those are ringlets. Like I said: I don't get it.

Whaddya reckon? Who did I miss? Who did I mistakenly diss? Were there any major hits – or misses – at the 2017 VIP Style Awards that you'd like to give an honourable mention to?

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