Brendan Courtney is a household name in Ireland. Not only has he worked as a fashion presenter and designer for over 20 years but he has hosted a number of RTÉ documentaries, including the heart-breaking We Need to Talk About Dad and the fascinating This Crowded House.
We sat down with the fashion guru to talk about all things fashion; why Brendan believes fashion can be both frivolous and powerful, his top tips for styling an outfit and why we Irish ladies need to stop caring about our dress size.
So before you hit the sales, read his advice.
"I had this epiphany where I was like 'fashion is like football for us! It's our passion and we're really interested in it and it may be silly and frivolous but so is football, silly and frivolous'. But actually, it can be really empowering," insists Brendan.
After being badly bullied in school, the fashion designer moved to a new school where he used fashion to transform himself and his persona.
"When I arrived at my next school, I arrived with bleached blonde hair and a red leather jacket - I arrived as a different person because this wasn't happening [bullying], I arrived as the cool dude in the eighties and I used fashion, or whatever you want to call it, to reinvent myself, so that's how powerful it can be."
When it comes to Christmas and New Year's Eve, we all want to dress up and look our best. According to Brendan, there are plenty of tips, tricks and "camouflaging" but the most important thing is to like who you are.
"Once you're in a comfortable zone with who you are, dressing is easy.
"We can help you along the way to find camouflaging, helpful, clothes but getting to like who you are - irrespective of your size [is most important].
"Here's the great news, the average size of a UK woman is 16. She's a size 16! Come on girls, it's ok!
When it comes styling an outfit, Brendan has three rules to live by:
- Less clingy fabrics
- Lots of bright colour
- A really good pop of lip