Discover the NEW GENERATION of IRISH MAKERS AND DESIGNERS creating quality, modern pieces with a respect for HERITAGE AND TRADITION …
Ireland is an island of makers and creators, a place where authentic traditional craft is celebrated. For a small country we boast a considerable pool of extraordinary talent, and the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland champions these wonderfully skilled and passionate makers through the online platform DesignIreland.ie.
With an appreciation for Irish heritage crafts in their DNA, these makers and designers embrace time-honoured techniques while bringing a design-led focus and modern aesthetic to their creations. Crafts and skills that have been passed down through generations are still used today – from Donegal tweed handwoven from Irish wool to local clay in handmade pottery and hand-sculpted glass and crystal – to make modern, covetable pieces we love to wear and decorate our homes with. The everyday pleasure of using something Irish that is unique, beautifully designed and crafted is a particular kind of luxury; locally produced objects are elevated to art form.
Before you make your Christmas list, discover some of Ireland’s most exciting designers and craftspeople and find out how they are using traditional techniques to make and sell their products today …
Karolina is a self-taught ceramicist. Picking up clay as a hobby in 2011, through experimentation Karolina found her style and set up her ceramic brand karoArt. As well as crafting all her pieces by hand, she also illustrates them, creating a whimsical style on her bowls, vases, mugs and plates. Often inspired by nature and animals, her ceramics feature images of foxes and birds, the night sky and the sea, and botanical illustrations with flowers, ferns and leafy twigs. Her most popular piece is the ‘Tweet Bowl’, a simple porcelain dish with a little bird perched on the lip of the bowl; it was originally designed for a special cat named Richard. Chose one for a special someone this Christmas.
A family business started in 1954, Mourne Textiles nestles in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains in Co Down. Launched originally by Norwegian-born Gerd Hay-Eddie, it is now run by her grandson, Mario Sierra and his mother, (Gerd’s daughter) Karen. Over the past number of years, Sierra has explored his grandmother’s archives (which include couture tweeds for Irish fashion designer Sybil Connolly in the mid-1950s) intending to bring her iconic designs back to the market. The brand was relaunched in 2012 and produces textiles from the original workshop, using many of the same looms and creating similar styles to those first created, signifying the timeless appeal of these quality goods. Wrap yourself in one this Christmas.
Owner and creator of Field Apothecary, Alix Mulholland wanted to create an elegant and high-end range of candles with a strong focus on Irish blends and scent. With such unique scents as Peat (birch, rose and earth), Lichen (nettle, clover and thyme), and Hay (grass, lavender and spearmint) these are scents that will fill a home with the fragrances of Ireland that we all know and love. The design-led range of essential oil-based candles are hand poured in small batches and packaged in a stylish smokey glass jar and embossed box. The scent of home: a wonderful gift for any homesick expat this Christmas.
Christmas has arrived at DesignIreland.ie and to spread the festive cheer they are offering readers the chance to win some fabulous Irish-made objects. The Design Ireland Festive Giveaway includes incredible pieces from Inner Island, Tutty’s Handmade Shoes and Gilded Hound to name but a few. To be in with a chance to win a Design Ireland prize worth over €1,000 simply follow this link and enter your contact details: bit.ly/designireland. Competition closes December 17.
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