Seán McGovern takes a discerning eye to the myriad of elegant styles out there, and explains how fashion purchases can be made with a clear conscience

The Light House Cinema in Smithfield served as the location for a welcome culture clash, as the sleek lines and playful levels became the home for a showcase of affordable vintage and new-but-classic designs. Sourced from a range of outlets, including South Dublin-based online retailer Epoch Boutique, as well as Oxfam on George’s Street, the styles on display came from easily accessible places. Oxfam in particular offers an opportunity that is occasional at best – a chance to buy classic looks at affordable prices, with all the proceeds going to charity, as well as giving new life to an old garment. The quality and range of the gowns pictured here is only a small indication of the calibre of clothes that can be bought as completely ethical purchases.


Epoch Boutique, an online clothing company operating in Deansgrange, focuses not only on vintage clothing handpicked from sellers worldwide, but also the literal art of recycling, with bags and skirts made from old neckties, and leather jackets turned into bags featuring their original zips and jacket detailing. Their range of products consists of clothes ranging from detailed lace blouses, tennis dresses and vintage bags and skirts.

The remarkable aspect is just how well these classic looks blended with more contemporary designs. The outfits were complimented with looks from TopShop and H&M, showing the versatility of looks not of our time combined with purchases easily found on the high street.

Zoë wears:
Vintage black dress, €20
Maroon Nougat dress, €20
Vintage veiled bow hat, €15
All of the above from Oxfam, George’s Street
Shoes are model’s own

Ciara wears:
Vintage lace blouse, €25 from Epoch Boutique (
Black button-up skirt, stylist’s own
Velvet corset, €13 from the Dublin Flea Market
Houndstooth skirt, stylist’s own
Shoes, model’s own

Deirdre wears:
Velvet halter neck dress, €20
Velvet jacket, €15, both from Oxfam
Vintage yellow peplum blouse, €20 from Epoch Boutique
Black button-up skirt, stylist’s own (from Oasis)
Black box bag, from Epoch Boutique
Shoes, model’s own

Stylist: Seán McGovern
Style Assitant: Zoë Coleman
Art Direction: Seán McGovern
Models: Zoë Coleman, Ciara Fitzpatrick and Deirdre Murphy
Photographers: Emer Igbokwe and Colin Scally
Special thanks to the Light House Cinema, Smithfield