You’ve all heard of Pippa O’Connor’s popular fashion factories that sell out countrywide. But what does it actually entail and is it worth the €100 splurge?
Well, I’m going to be diplomatic here: I’ll tell you all about it and let you decide!Who doesn’t love an excuse for a day out with the girls? Better still if you make it a night away with the girls! We were up at 7am and on the road to Hodson Bay Hotel in Athlone, where the event took place. Extra care was needed on the road due to the snow and by the time we arrived we were fairly peckish… and starving by lunch.
Pippa kicked off the packed event with a brief introduction about herself and how her workshops came about – it was in fact her husband Brian’s suggestion. Pippa recalls questioning ‘Would 10 people even turn up?’ We laughed out load – I mean she sold out not one, but three dates that weekend alone! There were 200-300 ladies at each show.
As expected Pippa is very down-to-earth, approachable and likeable. She spoke openly about a ‘really big deal’ that fell through a few years ago. Pippa was to be the face of a big UK cosmetic brand, but once she told them that she was 3 months pregnant with Ollie they rang her to say that they ‘decided to go a different direction.’ Pippa recounts that this was a major setback and questioned ‘do they think that once a woman is pregnant she falls off the face of the earth?‘
It was that knock that gave her the kick to go do her own thing. Fast forward 3 years and the Pippa Palette was born. She worried that the palettes wouldn’t sell and that they’d be left gathering dust in the bargain bins across the country, but now into its 5th run of production she assures us that it’s important to ‘go with your gut’ and take risks.MakeUp
The wonderful Tara O’Farrell of Tara MakeUp (definitely worth a follow on snapchat!) took to the stage for a makeup demonstration. I have met Tara on many occasions and she is not only drop dead gorgeous, but the sweetest soul with incredible wit. Oh and she’s a model on Xposé… and a makeup artist. Catch up on my interview with Tara – she shares her styling tips, career highlights and that prestigious booking to do Kim Cattrall’s (Sex in the City) makeup. If you want her 5 Beauty Buys read here.Start with: EYES
Tara used the Pippa X Blank Canvas palette, which contains eyeshadow, highlighter, contour and blush. Tobi is a popular matte eyeshadow that will be coming out on its own very soon. She then used Dodo (a subtle cranberry tone) as cranberry is a shade that suits every eye colour. It is the most complimentary colour for blue and green eyes. All colours suit brown eyes. In her eyes the best individual false lashes are from Penneys and cost €1.50. The glue she recommends is Duo glue available at Boots and Penneys.
Top tip: Never buff your powder; Press! Pressing on your powder provides better coverage and finish.
Products that stood out for me:
- Stila Primer One Step Correct – each colour has a purpose. Incase you’ve ever wondered: green reduces redness, peach brightens the skin and lavender minimises sallowness.
- NYX Liquid Illuminator – this highlighter takes away dullness and gives the skin that dewy, youthful glow (shade: sunbeam).
- MakeUp Gallery Shine On Lip Gloss – this lip gloss (shade: Nice & Nude) costs €1.49 in Dealz! Tara stocked up on 15 at once!
Come to think of it… I may have to dedicate an entire blog post to all the recommended products and tips! Stay tuned!
Any queries email: email@example.com or contact me on Facebook.Lunch
At lunchtime we were served Afternoon Tea. The sandwiches were really fresh and delicious, the treats were divine as was the half-a-scone topped with cream. The only problem was we were so hungry that we had to ask for another tray of sandwiches (pure Irish!) and joked: ‘any chance of the other half of that scone?’ I’m going to be honest here – we expected a glass of bubbly or a tipple of wine too! That would have gone down well.
After lunch, it was time for the much anticipated fashion show. 5 models of varying shapes and sizes (definitely well received) were styled by Pippa and dressed in Warehouse, River Island, Oasis and Coast. There was something to suit every taste and a handful of looks caught my eye. We got a look at some of Pippa’s wardrobe staples and cosy cover-ups too.
We got some great quick fix hair tips for girls on the go and Pippa revealed her favourite skincare products. Here are a couple of recommendations:
- Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm. I’ve used this and it is an absolutely divine balm that smells incredible. This is a winner!
- Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate.
- Image Max Stem Cell Eye Cream. (Image Skincare Vital C Eye Recovery Gel also recommended).
- Mama Mio Balancing Facial Wash. This is what she recommends during pregnancy. Buy from Cloud10Beauty here.
I’m using Image Skincare products at the moment as well as undergoing their intense Lightening Lift Treatments at Thérapie Clinic. Read my review here and watch my latest skincare video review here. We had our girly getaway planned since before Christmas and were really looking forward to it. It was a lovely day out with expert advice and we also met Pippa briefly at the end. Pippa’s husband Brian, son Ollie (dinosaur in hand), sister Susanna and Niamh (contributor to Pippa.ie) were on hand to help. When I first arrived at the hotel, Brian very pleasantly pointed me in the right direction and I met Susanna in the bathroom, where we struck up some friendly chat about Image Skincare Vital C!
Tara Makeup was a big hit at our table and I think everyone took something from the day.
Would you say €100 was too pricey? Let me know your thoughts!
Hotel & Restaurant
The girls and I stayed at the Radisson in Athlone for a bargain. We would certainly go back! We ate at Hatter’s Lane, which we would all highly recommend for casual dining. The food was tops – reasonably priced and the desserts are homemade. The halloumi skewers and warm flourless chocolate cakes were favourites. See full menu here. They must have known we were going to be a rowdy bunch as they gave us a nice cubby to ourselves for a bit of privacy. We were laughing so much – that uncontrollable laughter that turns into what sounds like wailing. We were crying with laughter.
I want to do it all over again.
The following day we spent a few hours shopping at Athlone Towncentre. I am guest blogger (love this job!) for this wonderful store and I shared all my finds on snapchat.
Thanks for reading!