What is WearingIrish?
WearingIrish is a movement that aims to tell an untold story—the story of Irish design. The vision behind WearingIrish is to create a movement that propels Irish design on to the worldwide stage, so that Irish designers get the recognition and business they deserve. The aim is to give shoppers exposure and access to Irish designers. We all know about Irish food (check out these places if you don’t) so why don’t we know about Irish design? Ultimately, it’s about building Ireland’s reputation for fashion in the same way that Ireland’s food industry has blossomed.
And it’s been around how long?
The movement began in 2016 when Margaret Molloy, an Irish-born, U.S.-based marketing guru, decided to don only outfits, accessories, and jewelry by Irish designers for the whole month of March. (Why March? Because the whole world goes green in March anyway!). She posted daily snaps of her outfits on Instagram with the hashtag #wearingirish. And it was the start of something beautiful.
Who is the face behind this?
Margaret Molloy. This is her passion project.
What’s her day job though?
She is the Chief Marketing Officer of Siegel+Gale, a renowned, global branding firm. Her skills as a conference moderator and roundtable convener are legendary in the marketing community. She contributes to business publications, and has amassed a substantial following on LinkedIn and Twitter. She describes herself as a simplifier and interviews top marketers in her Meet the Simplifiers interview series.
What was her inspiration?
Margaret realized she had a platform and wanted to use it to tell an untold story about Ireland. As she is a prominent figure in the Irish-American community in New York, she attends lots of events (especially in March). It occurred to her that it would be a worthwhile experiment (and conversation starter) to attend these events wearing Irish designs. What better way to support Irish talent than to wear it? This is what she said in an interview:
“It is clear to me that Irish fashion does not get the visibility that it deserves. And as a marketer, I am fascinated by the possibilities that social media provides for ordinary citizens to show their support for brands and causes. Connecting all three interests — fashion, marketing, and Irish heritage — I saw an opportunity for people to come together on social media to support Irish designers, especially when all eyes are on Ireland in March”
What happened after March?
March came and went but the movement grew from strength to strength. Designers started to use #wearingirish on social media, traditional media interest was piqued, people started to get interested, and Chapter One of the WearingIrish story was well underway.
Is it just for clothing designers?
And jewelry, hats, gloves, leather goods, scarves and more! Menswear and Womenswear.
I’m in. Where do I start?
Well, you can start by using the #WearingIrish hashtag on Twitter and Instagram! Simply post your brand photos as usual, and (in the captions or comments) type #WearingIrish. Did you know that Instagram recently introduced a handy feature where you can follow hashtags, in addition to people? Read about it here and follow the #WearingIrish hashtag. As a bonus, tag @WearingIrish on Instagram.
WearingIrish is about building the entire fashion community. Support fellow designers and influencers who use #WearingIrish by liking their posts too.
How do I spread the word?
By talking, tweeting and texting! Tell your social media active customers to post their images on social media, using #WearingIrish. Tell your media contacts too (they may want to write a story!).
Any ideas for a promotion I could run around this?
Of course! Why not ask customers to post their best shots using the #WearingIrish on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter? Best image wins… simple!
And If I use #WearingIrish, do I have to give any financial reimbursement to Wearing Irish?
No! This is a movement. We want to highlight Irish design and WearingIrish seeks to do that in an immersive way.
My hunch is that WearingIrish has interesting plans in the works, how do I make sure I don’t miss anything?
Follow @WearingIrish on Instagram and @MargaretMolloy on Twitter. You are in for a treat, because you’ll get useful shares on marketing and branding too.
I’ve been hearing about and event in New York. What’s that all about?
Well, we’re hosting our first event in New York this May to provide eight top Irish designers an opportunity to display their wares and meet potential New York customers and influencers. (Insert link to WearingIrish NYC 2018 page). So, what are you waiting for? Enter. Applications close March 5.