Don O’Neill, designer and creator of the Theia label, was “honored” to get a call from Oprah Winfrey, who has fallen in love with his dresses. The media mogul wore a similar Theia dress on the cover of O Magazine last September and wanted to wear it while receiving her honorary Oscar statue on Sunday.
The “crunchy sequin dress” is made of stretch fabric and more than a million sequins. The sequins are a selection of five sizes and six colors that combine to create a "glittering gold" effect.
Speaking last September about dressing Oprah, O’Neill said, “To dress Oprah is a big deal, to be on the cover of her magazine is a huge, huge deal, but to be on the September issue is beyond!”
Another Irish star also wore and O’Neill design at the Oscars on Sunday night. Eimear O’Kane the producer of “Pentecost”, the nominated Irish short film wore a Theia empire line dress, designed to accommodate her six month pregnancy bump.
“It wasn’t an easy task to find a suitable dress in my condition but Don O’Neill and his team were very patient with me and gave me a big selection of dresses to choose from,” said O’Kane.
This has been an exciting month for the New York based designer. Just a week ago he had his first New York Fashion Week runway show.
Speaking about the thirty designs that made up the show he said, “This season I want to truly empower women. Athena, the Goddess of wisdom and courage, was a valiant warrior, who fiercely protected her people and their lands. In 2012 as we face challenging times, I want to imbue the THEIA woman with this sense of power and confidence that will help her stride forward, feeling brave, beautiful, and strong."
The influential womensweardaily.com said, “Don O’Neill’s first runway presentation was precisely on point, with beautiful and dramatic red-carpet-worthy gowns and cocktail dresses.”
Settled in New York, and with a career spanning 20 years, O’Neill spoke about his roots. He said “I grew up in Ireland in the 80s and the economy was not doing really well and I and all of my classmates and all of my colleagues left; none of us stayed in Ireland. All of us had to go abroad to seek employment opportunities.”
O’Neill worked in McDonald’s in Paris before he broke into the fashion scene working with Christian Lacroix.
His designs have previously been worn by Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood. However, O’Neill has admitted that he really wants to dress Michelle Obama. He said “She’s another real woman and a great role model. Every designer dreams of dressing movie stars but at the moment Obama is so powerful, especially in fashion terms."
Who knows, with St. Patrick’s Day coming up, he may just get a call from the White House!