Fashion and art blogger, educator, and columnist Zara McDaid shares her style secrets with Donegal Woman.

Zara’s flare for innovation has led to her fashion themed paintings being exhibited throughout Ireland, and in 2012 her work was selected and displayed on the iconic billboards in Times Square, New York.

A busy woman, Zara has appeared on RTE2’s #TRENDING to discuss how accessorizing can transform an outfit, and was interviewed by presenter Clare Ronan about her career on Irish TV. Most recently, Zara was a member of the fashion panel for ‘Xposé’!


Here is Zara’s style study for Donegal Woman:

How would you describe your personal style?
I have always had a love and interest in fashion and I would describe my personal style as versatile. What I wear depends entirely on my mood at the time, as well as the occasion.  I can’t say I like to follow trends too much and I just prefer to do my own thing.


Who is your style icon?
I really love fashionista and entrepreneur Mira Duma for her unique sense of style. I love how she adds personality and interest to her styling through accessorizing. I also really love Blake Lively’s effortless style. She never gets it wrong.

What is your favourite piece of clothing?
I can’t say I have one favourite piece of clothing but I do have a thing for jackets and coats. Last Spring I invested in a pastel coloured tweed jacket from Mc Elhinneys Dept. store which is my go-to jacket when the weather is a little chilly during the Spring months.

What inspires you when choosing an outfit?
I find inspiration everywhere, from travelling to different countries, artworks, design, to the people in my life. What I always seem to be drawn to is colour, unique prints and designs. Of course I always try to choose clothing that flatters my figure, body shape and skin tone.

How would you accessorise a look?
Coming into the Spring months I love to introduce bright printed neck scarves to add a pop of colour to an outfit. I love layered pendants and chains and also a cool pair of statement sunglasses.

What is your most recent fashion purchase?
I bought a pair of silver heeled shoes from Primark a few weeks ago which I know I will wear loads over the summer months. They look a LOT more expensive that they are.

Where do you usually shop for clothing?
I love shopping online, my go-to online stores are usually ASOS, Chic-Wish and ZARA. I love high street and also handmade or vintage finds.

What are your wardrobe staples?
I love printed shirts and garments with unique designs or colours. I always spend a little more money on jeans, shoes and jackets.

Do you follow trends?
From time to time I do, however I prefer to add my touch twist to trends instead of copying them.

Heels or flats?
I love conform so I usually opt for heels. As an art teacher I am on my feet all day so I don’t mind not wearing heels to work but I do love popping on a pretty pair of heels for a night out or occasion.

Shoes or handbags?
That is a tricky one but I will have to say handbags.

What is the best piece of fashion advice you’ve ever heard?
To dress for yourself and stay true to your own personal sense of style.

What do you think about the fashion scene in Donegal?
I have always said it; Donegal ladies are in a league of their own when it comes to style. I live in Sligo but I must confess when I go out in Donegal I am always blown away by the style Donegal ladies possess.

What has been your biggest fashion faux-pas?
When I look back on old photographs I always cringe! I can’t say one in particular out to me. I think we all cringe a little looking back at our old fashion buys!

If money wasn’t a factor, what would you buy?
I would certainly do some damage! I think though ahead of clothing, I would jump on a plane and do a bit of travelling… with a brand new summer wardrobe of course!

How do you feel when you’re in your favourite outfit?
I have a red dress which, when I put it on, makes me feel amazing!

To keep up with Zara you can follow her blog at

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