MM: What drew you to fashion? And more, specifically, to menswear design?
SM: It started during my adolescence. I would experiment with dyes and materials on cheap clothing. I always enjoyed painting and this was the result of an interest in both clothing and art coming together. Design then came afterwards. I guess specialising in menswear never seemed like a choice. It just felt completely natural that i’d go in this direction.
^ More from the Rokas Rach shoot. Love how McGirr combines the rawness of a deconstructed approach with the more playful, boyish details like the big buttons and sleeveless arms.
MM: What motivated you to move to London? Was it the lack of education for your chosen craft, or something more?
SM: For me it just wasn´t right to study fashion outside of a fashion capital. I love Dublin and Ireland so much! But I was definitely ready to leave. I think the motivation on moving to London came from also from social reasons, not just educational. A teenage boy in Dublin is supposed to fit into a specific catagory factoring in your appearence, sexual preference, musical tastes etc. I wasn´t happy with this so instead, moving to London was also a way of creating my own social identity.
^ McGirr’s accessories feature in a beauty story equal parts high-octane glam and punk for Vogue Hommes Japan (September 2010).
MM: Do you feel your nationality/heritage influences your work?
SM: I think it influences everything else I am besides fashion. So, no, not in the way say Vivienne Westwood´s British sensibility has influenced her work.
^ McGirr’s collection Beauty Stricken inspired by a Ballet Russes production of the ballet ‘Narcissus’. This collection uses, amongst other fabrics, suede and mohair is rendered in colours reminiscent of those one might imagine occurring in the Greek protagonist’s environment – moss greens, and soft flesh pink. It also addresses one of the most topical stories in menswear right now – the ever-increasing feminisation of the male form and how it’s adorned. McGirr, much like myself, reckons this isn’t an emasculation in a negative sense, but more a blurring a softening of once dominant gender stereotypes.
MM: How would you describe your aesthetic?
SM: Simple – experimental use of high quality fabrics, close attention to trimmings and everything together comes after that.
MM: What are your plans for the future?
SM: To launch an Autumn Winter 2011 collection early next year, travel back to Japan soon and keep on working an intense schedule.