Smart fashionistas know the names of John Rocha, Paul Costello and Lainey Keogh -- Irish fashion designers have made it global. And Galway-born milliner to the stars Philip Treacy just got the gig to design the hats for Prince William and Kate Middleton's royal wedding.
Irish designers, like Ireland's writers, artists and musicians, have become household names. But the names that many don't know are those of the models, the ones who make the designers’ clothes look stunning, the hard working and often unsung models.
Here's our list of who we consider the top Irish models around:
Coco Rocha, a Canadian Irish model, was discovered by a scout while performing at an Irish dancing competition. The outspoken and beautiful model has now become a favorite of Vogue editrix Anna Wintour, had a billboard in Times Square last year and is working with a massive number of top designers. Most recently Rocha was named the Elle model of the year.
Born in Texas, this model, stylist and designer is proud of her Irish ancestry. During her prolific career she's modeled for numerous fashion magazines and walked international runways for designers like Armani, Balenciaga, Cavalli, Gucci and Karl Lagerfeld. She's worked on campaigns for names such as Michael Kors, Rolex, Tiffany & Co., J.Crew, Levi's, H&M and the Gap, and she's been the face of Maybelline since 2002.
This year the 17-year-old Nebraska beauty became the youngest woman to win the Miss America competition since 1937, when Bette Cooper walked away with the honor. Scanlan has taken a year out of her education to fulfill her duties as Miss America but who knows what her future will hold. We’ve high hope for this young starlet.
You might also know her as Miss Universe Ireland 2010. Purcell has really hit the big time since she failed to win the Miss Universe contest, but did get spotted by Donald Trump. Purcell spent a great deal of 2010 in New York working with Trump’s modeling agency, and has been inundated with modeling jobs since.
The daughter of “Lady in Red” crooner Chris DeBurgh, Davison grew up in the Southside of Dublin and became the winner of the Miss World title in 2003. She has been involved in various modeling campaigns since her success, including Newbridge Silverware and Rally England.
Loughnane has worked extensively as a model and also in Irish TV and film. Loughnane was a contestant on this year's "Britain's Next Top Model" on Living TV.
Foley is a younger star aged just 19, but she's already been named as a rising star to watch by “Vogue.” She was discovered through an Irish TV show, "The Model Agent." During the show she cited Erin O'Connor as her fashion icon and Vivienne Westwood as her favorite designer.
Maher is a former successful Irish model who worked as the face for Valentino. Having changed tack, she is now a designer and in 2004 launched her own brand of jewelry.
Gilson has been modeling for most of her life and now works predominantly as a TV presenter. During her career she appeared in the pages of “Cosmopolitan,” “Marie Claire” and “Company.” She now works on a fashion and gossip TV show as a presenter.