New Judge announced for Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture as Pippa O’Connor Joins Judging Panel for 2018

Ireland’s renowned recycled fashion competition Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture is back for its eighth successive year and today we are delighted to announce that style guru Pippa O’Connor will join the judging panel. As one of Ireland’s leading fashion and beauty entrepreneurs Pippa is perfectly poised to take up the mantle of judging the extraordinary talent of Ireland’s young fashion creators. She will join XFactor and Ireland’s Got Talent judge, Louis Walsh, who will once again bring his invaluable judging experience and insight into the entertainment industry to the panel along with fashion educators and experts Tracey Fahey and Jane Leavey.

Speaking on joining the judging panel, Pippa O’Connor said, “I am thrilled to be involved in this year’s Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture. Seeing some of the designs from last year, I can really see the hard work and time that goes into creating these amazing creations! They are truly works of art! I am completely blown away by the talent of the young people of Ireland and Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture creates an amazing opportunity for students to showcase their talent and provides them with the a stepping stone to jump start their careers in the fashion industry. I am really looking forward to meeting some of the incredible students involved in this year’s competition.”

Now in its eighth year the all-Ireland leading fashion and art competition for secondary school’s challenges students to create unique, original and innovative outfits from recycled materials and junk. Secondary school students from the five regions North, South, East, West and Dublin are invited to enter this year’s competition. Students will need to have their Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture entry designed ahead of registration which opens on the 8th of January. For more information on how your school can get involved visit The competition is open to all students who are attending secondary school.

Laura Lynch, Head of Segments and Propositions, Bank of Ireland added, “We are delighted to welcome Pippa on board to this year’s judging panel, bringing with her a wealth of knowledge and experience from her years of working in the fashion industry.

At Bank of Ireland we are leading the way with many fantastic partnerships designed and tailored to support young people on their journey from primary and secondary, right up to third level. Fostering a culture of entrepreneurship and innovation at an early age is extremely important and our market-leading secondary programme has been devised for this purpose. Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture marries together creativity and entrepreneurship while giving the future talent of Irish fashion a kick start on their careers. This is an initiative which really succeeds through the talent and enthusiasm of students and their teachers. We look forward to seeing this year’s innovative creations which continue to amaze and impress us each year.”

Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture is a national contest that celebrates and encourages young designers in second level to create fashion from everyday junk that would normally find its way into the bin.

Sara Ryan, COO at Bank of Ireland Junk Kouture spoke of their excitement to have new judge Pippa O’Connor join the line-up. “We are so excited to have Pippa on board, she is an icon to hundreds and thousands of fashion fans around the country with an incredibly keen eye for style and having developed her own range of clothing will instinctively spot others’ ability to create and design. Not only that as a parent, she will be hugely empathetic with the students. We couldn’t think of a more appropriate role model to join the 2018 judging panel”.

Last year saw a record number of applicants with over 1,300 designs entered which were whittled down to just 80 for the grand final in the 3Arena.