Creative Quarter & Dublin Hipsters

Clockwise, from top left: Graffiti in Temple Bar, Lace necklace at the design center, Hand-dyed yarn made in Ireland, Bow’s window display, Colorful, knitted coral reef at Trinity College, Wall art in a fitting room, Flowers for sale in the Creative Quarter, Visual merchandising in Bow, and Colman seated at his desk.

After almost two full weeks of living in Dublin, I no longer feel like a tourist. I’m listening to Irish music, going to concerts at intimate, local venues, shopping in the markets, chatting with Dubliners, and reading Yeats and Joyce in the rare case that I have free time in my flat. In my last post, I introduced the Creative Quarter and explained a few prominent trends that I’ve been noticing on the streets and in pubs, and it’s time to add a new layer of perspective.

At this point in my study abroad experience, I’ve grown a lot more comfortable striking up converstations with locals and asking questions about their style. Colman (Gaelic for “Dove”), pictured in the center tile above, was manning a shop called Bow in the Creative Quarter this past Monday. I timidly approached him and asked if I could ask him some questions, and he immediately openned up about Dublin trends…or lack of. According to Colman, the Irish don’t follow specific trends the way that Americans do. Instead, they’re “influenced by the world.” Some people, especially youth, tend to have a certain daily uniform that they adhere to, more or less. Others, who would be considered “hipsters” by American standards, would completely reject popular fashion and wear whatever suits their mood. Often, someone who doesn’t care one way or another about the way they dress could be perceived by others as the most stylish person in the world. 

Colman said there’s still an interest in high fashion and style icons from Paris and America, but for the most part, Irish people draw inspiration from the streets, culture, and life. They care less about what models are wearing in fashion magazines and care more about what the cool waitress did with her hair or how the group of fashionable pub-goers layered their tights and jean shorts. Regardless of the lack of following specific trends, I’ve still noticed recurring motifs of skull prints, American flags, and long fringe everytime I shop. The way in which the Irish adapt these popular motifs, however, is as plentiful as the number of clovers growing in the hills of County Wicklow. 

For more information on Bow, please find their e-commerce site via the following link:

That’s all for now,


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