Top French fashion houses are leading the clamor for the shamrock, now the global must-have accessory in the build-up to St Patrick’s Day.
The Irish Times reports that the fashion industry is awash with shamrock motifs and green is definitely the in-color this Spring.
Parisian heavyweight designer Yves Saint Laurent has emblazoned fashion jewelry with shamrock motifs says the paper, including their five-carat gold Lucky Chyc earrings.
Fine jewelry brand Annoushka has followed the trend with a clover pendant made of green diamond and yellow gold.
French label Lanvin’s green of the season is called Shamrock with a dress utilizing the color selling out for over $1,500 at the Brown Thomas store in Dublin and online.
Yet green is still a difficult color to sell back in Ireland, even around the St Patrick’s Day festivities.
Brown Thomas buying director Shelly Corkery told the Irish Times: “Of all the fashion colors on offer green, in all its 40 shades, is the one you most resist before you buy.”
Homeware designers are also going green ahead of Paddy’s Day.
The Italian design house Alessi and French furniture company Ligne Roset have both introduced green products and Shamrock motifs to their wares.
London-based Irish jewelry designer Merle O’Grady, a favorite of Rihanna and Beyonce, is also adopting the Shamrock.
“I’m a massive fan of nail art and would love to have a tiny shamrock embedded in gel on each of my nails, probably with some green glitter thrown in – so bad it’s good!” she told the paper.
“It’s a reasonably subtle yet frivolous way to get into the spirit of things.”
Shamrock growers are cashing in on the boom, including the St Patrick’s Shamrock Company in Dublin which supplied the White House with a traditional plant in 2009 for Brian Cowen’s visit to see newly elected President Barack Obama.
Kerryman Pat Everett sells a more eco friendly hydro-culture Shamrock crop from Ballingskelligs, which is sold in vials without earth.
Everett’s company supplied the Shamrock presented to the US President last year and will do so again this week.
“The traditional Shamrock was dirty, messy and wet with bits of soil clinging to it, this Shamrock is ready-to-wear and won’t spoil your clothing,” said Everett.
“You often don’t know if your shamrock is the one until you see it in the Waterford Crystal presentation bowl on the steps of the White House.”
The Irish public is also going green when it comes to Shamrock with sales up 10percent at Tesco Ireland where the hydrogen vials used by the likes of Everett are twice as popular as the traditional sprigs.
Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs chooses the shamrock to be presented to the President of the US each year.
“It’s a tendering process, we get samples in from companies interested in tendering and select on their services offered, their price and the quality of their shamrock,” explained a government spokesman.