Born in Monaghan but now living in Dublin with her husband, Paula graduated with an honours degree in fashion design from NCAD in 2004 and has worked with knitted cashmere for more than 15 years. She is also a self-taught photographer. With an artist’s eye and a designer’s vision, she has created a breathtakingly beautiful brand, which she wanted to reflect not only her aesthetic but her values too. As someone who embraces alternative wellness therapies, from meditation to manifesting, Paula views beautifully made, high-quality clothes as another form of self-care.
Each piece of Castanea cashmere is mindfully designed by Paula in her studio. Precision is as much a part of Paula’s nature as creativity, and both characteristics infuse not just the Castanea brand but her personal life too; from the interior design of her home and the stunning tablescapes she creates for dinner parties with friends to how she plants her garden and curates her wardrobe.
Paula has a curious mind as well as a creative one, hence her decision to take up photography in 2017, and her drive to complete the Female High Fliers program at the DCU Ryan Academy, which she accomplished in 2019 – at the same time as planning her wedding in Seville! She also has a profound love of travel. When she first visited Nepal in 2017 for three weeks, she was blown away by the people, their traditions and their spirituality. The ethos of the country mirrored many of Paula’s own beliefs and they have come to define her brand too.
Paula is intrigued by inspiring women and artists. In fact, each piece of Castanea cashmere is named after an individual or place that has made a deep impression on her over the years. Paula has a unique aesthetic and is drawn to one-of-a-kind items, and it’s this love of the unusual, intriguing and alternative that has helped shape her beautifully unique designs.