Leicester Fashion Week – Oceanic NAture Press Release

Saraden Designs - Leicester Fashion Week

Saraden Designs

Oceanic Nature


Sarah O’ Rourke from Saraden Designs presented her SS20 Millinery Collection during Leicester Fashion Week in Mercure Leicester The Grand Hotel, on November 10th 2019.

Oceanic Nature is the theme of this collection. Sarah began to look at the words oceanic and nature separately. She examined the physics, chemistry and biology of marine systems before she began designing to understand the movement of the sea and the elements below the water. Nature could be interpreted in many ways, the nature of the ocean, its creatures, the movements and the nature that surround us in everyday life.

The colours of the ocean and the colours of nature are very similar. Both use blues, greens, greys and these were the primary colours chosen to use in this collection. Saraden bespoke fabrics were created in house by Sarah and then sculpted into the desired designs. Using her sculptural background Sarah has sculpted each of these pieces, they have all been shaped by hand and secured through hand stitching methods. Each is an intricate piece of art and captures the elements of the theme.

Sarah created her bespoke dresses to compliment the designs. They are simple yet elegant keeping the focus on her millinery designs.

The setting for the imagery ties into the nature theme, the colours in the foreground and background complement each other. The structure of the scenery lends similar qualities to the interpretation of Oceanic Nature.

Oceanic Nature Millinery by Irish Milliner Sarah O' Rourke
Irish Milliner Saraden Designs Oceanic Nature during Leicester Fashion Week 10th November 2019 | Photographer Sarah O' Rourke
Irish Milliner Saraden Designs Millinery Designs during Leicester Fashion Week 10th November 2019 | Photographer Sarah O' Rourke

about saraden designs

Saraden Designs is an Irish Design company founded in 2016 by owner Sarah O’ Rourke from Ashbourne Co. Meath. Sarah began Saraden Designs with a vision of creating unique millinery pieces which really capture the eye of the audience.

‘I wanted to create something that makes people stop and say I’ve never seen anything like that before. I want to make millinery popular again and make people realise there is a piece for them they just have to find the right one to suit them.’

The fabrics used to create these unique pieces have been handmade in-house by Sarah herself and is called Saraden Fabric. Once a sheet is created it cannot be replicated, making a Saraden Designs piece exclusive to its owner. It is often questioned how the fabrics are made but it is Sarah’s Niche and what makes her company unique

Sarah has an extensive design background having received a degree in IADT Dun Laoghaire in Visual Arts Practice Sculpture. Sarah herself has said that this background has influenced how she makes her Millinery creations. Sarah firmly believes ‘there is a millinery design to suit everyone you just have to find the right creation to suit you’.

‘Wearable Art’ is a term which has been used to describe Sarah’s work and is a term which has been welcomed. With her background in Fine Art Sculpture it isn’t difficult to see where this term has been drawn from. Year to year it is evident in the designs that Sarah has become more experimental and confident in her work and is not afraid to take risks.

Sarah became a part of Fashion Revolution Week in 2019. It is an important event as it questions who made your clothes? Saraden cut off fabrics are reworked back into designs leaving no waste behind. Also with all pieces made in-house you can trace exactly who has made them.


Saraden Designs has been featured in various publications throughout Ireland and Europe. She has had her work featured on the runways of London Fashion Week, Belfast Fashion Week, Sustainable Fashion during Fashion Revolution Week Dublin, London Hat Week  and has had her designs exhibited in Palma Mallorca, The Netherlands, Birmingham, Dublin, Cork, Belfast and Dorset.


 Sarah is currently a Finalist for Milliner of the Year 2019 in the High Style Awards, which will be announced on November 23rd in the Clayton Silver Springs Cork, Ireland. 


Sarah also owns Saraden Sewn Illustrations and Custom Portraits. Here Sarah creates her fabric and then sews illustrations and portraits into the fabric using both hand and machines sewing techniques. These make beautiful presents for christenings, birthdays, weddings or for simply around the home.  

the collection

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