Styling for Woodies Christmas 2014

Is it too early to start talking about Christmas?! I hope you’ll forgive me for bringing the season to your attention but in my defence there’s just over a month to go and I’m too excited about this shoot to hold onto it any longer! Taking on more commercial styling was one of my big goals for 2014 so getting the opportunity to style a twenty page catalogue for Irish homewares and DIY brand Woodies, was a really exciting prospect.


Woodies is a bit of an Irish institution, being the first stop for many Irish families looking for tools and equipment to take on DIY projects around the home. That being said, they aren’t traditionally well known for their contemporary style and decor lines, so the big challenge of the shoot was to showcase their gorgeous range in a whole new light. It was lovely to be involved in the art direction from the very start and I will say I was pleasantly surprised with the sheer selection of really beautiful Christmas items available. To capture and showcase this range I decided to maximise the potential of an elegant twist on the traditional Christmas look, and focused on a classic palette of red and white, inspired by the simplicity of Nordic Christmas style.


I wanted to keep the shoot as natural and organic as possible so relied on the cosy power of candle light and lots of warming fairy lights to create atmosphere. We also wanted to showcase easy craft projects for Christmas, that families could recreate at home. Some of my favourite touches from the day were the pinecone place cards (created using tags from Woodies and their blackboard paint) an outdoor Christmas tree created from lights and the DIY Christmas wrapping paper station.


Some of the ideas I ‘m looking forward to trying out myself at home this Christmas. I will definitely be decorating corners of my home with lots of kilner bottles and candles, adding a dash of orange and cinnamon on window sills for the scent of Christmas throughout the whole house. And a little trick I robbed from my sister, filling Kilner jars with fairy lights is such an easy way to light up a corner all year round.



My favourite decorations from the day were the delicate glass baubles featured on a single Christmas branch. It’s not often you see such elegant traditional pieces, with so many trends opting for the more bling the better! These simple decorations reminded me of decorations my grandparents would have had on their tree and they are certainly the kind that could last the test of time.



We also had lots of fun creating a childrens corner. Again as a little girl, we would always have had an adults table and childrens table at big family celebrations as there were too many people to fit around our dining table in one go. I liked the idea of making an extra special little corner for the little ones, complete with their own pint sized Christmas tree.



How are all your Christmas plans coming along? Is styling the Christmas table something that’s high on your to do list? I think special occasions deserve a little extra oomph to the table and the above look was really easy to create. To bring a cosy festive atmosphere to the table I ask Mark from The Garden to create a rich berry hued arrangement with lots of greenery. The pinecone place cards would be a lovely personal touch and a fun project to involve the family in at home, with obligatory forest walks to collect them! I accessorised the rest of the table with red table mats from Woodies, plates in a snowflake and reindeer design and tied the cutlery together with some Christmas ribbon for an extra little festive touch.It was a really special shoot to be involved in, one which I enjoyed from start to finish. Thanks to the wonderful Doreen Kilfeather for capturing it all so beautifully and to the Woodies team for being such fun to work with! You can see the full catalogue in Woodies stores at the moment so be sure to pop in and take a peek.

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BASH Prep…Creative Wedding Workshop

Those of you who stop by here regularly know I’m a big fan of the trailblazing wedding magazine BASH! From outside the box real weddings, to delicious beauty and fashion features they epitomise all the exciting, creative and fun developments taking place in the Irish wedding industry at the moment. So I’m really excited to announce I’ll be speaking at their creative wedding workshop, BASH Prep in November, sharing all the tricks of the trade that I call upon when styling a gorgeous wedding or shoot.


bash-prep-ciara o'halloran-wedding-stylist


Things I’ll be chatting about include finding inspiration and defining your personal style in a whirlwind of pinterest images, as well as easy DIYs and key steps to make your wedding decor reflect your story from start to finish. With flower master extraordinaire Annmarie O’Leary sharing her magic and illustration queen Kitty Moss imparting wisdom, it’s most definitely going to be a good one. Don’t just take my word for it, check about the amazing video from Bash Prep Part 1…then dash over here to get free tickets while you still can!

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Inspired by Love Workshop…
Styling Sneak Peek

Happy Monday lovely people. Hope you all had a great weekend? I spent Friday styling a stunning wedding in quite the magical location that is Lissard Estate in West Cork. It’s always a rollercoaster of excitement when you see the styling dreams for a couple coming together after so many months of planning, and to add to the hype, this gorgeous bride and groom flew all the way from Dubai to celebrate at home in Ireland. From cafe au lait bouquets, to eastern inspired cosy corners and escort card displays given the Dubai treatment, it was a special day from start to finish and I was honoured to help them to bring their dream day to life. In keeping with wedding inspiration, I got to see the results of the Inspired by Love Workshop in Slovakia and can’t resist giving you a glimpse. I think the highlight for me was being let loose to style a crumbling manor that turned out to be a childhood home of Marie Antoinette! If only walls could speak the stories would have been mesmerising. I’ll look forward to sharing the full spread and the inspiration behind the editorials once they have been published, but for now enjoy the beauties below. And if anyone is looking for an outside the box wedding location, Slovakia is certainly worth exploring more.




Image Credits: Photography: Inspired by Love | Art Direction & Styling: Ciara O’Halloran | Flowers: Wolfert | Dress: Patrick Casey | Suit: H&M |Hair: Boris Bordacs | Makeup: Lubica Makeup | Props: Ponc Rentals | Ribbons & Fabric: Silk & Willow |

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Shades, Tones and Accents…
Navy, White and Obsidian

Ooh life lately…you sure have been busy! I have so many lovely things I’m excited to share with you on the blog but sometimes keeping it simple is the way forward. Concocting colour stories is a favourite decompressing pastime of mine, so for today I thought I’d share just that, a little colour inspiration in the form of minimal white melting into shades of navy and obsidian. A particularly delicious combination of colours to take us into the cooler months of the year. Have a great week everyone!


Image credits: Tumblr | Mazama | A Well Traveled Woman | Sensibly Nonsensical

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Nature and Neutrals…
Styling for Image Interiors and Living

Hi everyone, hope your September is off to a good start! Life certainly took over for me over the last few weeks but one of the highlights which I’m excited to be able to share, is a decor shoot I styled for Image Interiors and Living. With the start of a new academic year underway, the need for renewed organisation, a fresh start and best foot forward resolutions, always seems more pertinent for me in September than in January. Clearly the talented folk over at Image Interiors agree because their latest issue is crammed with pared back beauty, decluttering advice and an oasis of serene inspiration for Autumn. Jumping at the chance to collaborate with eternally talented multi-tasker Nathalie Marquez Courtney,  it was precisely this need for focused calm that inspired me to style a shoot with no nonsense simplicity. I gave a nod to crisp monotone shades for some Nordic sophistication and  softened the base palette with lots of greenery and cosy natural elements. It’s a look that’s really easy to recreate, especially with the range of goodies available now in Irish shops and would be particularly effective in a home office space where you need clarity and focus to be mirrored in your surroundings.  Be sure to pick up a copy of the latest issue out now to find out where I sourced all the lovely things below!

interior-stylist-dublin-ciara o'halloran

interior-stylist-dublin-ciara o'halloran interior-stylist-dublin-ciara o'halloran interior-stylist-dublin-ciara o'halloran Image Credits: Photography: Nathalie Marquez Courtney | Art Direction & Styling: Ciara O’Halloran | Assisted by: Diana Nacu |

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