To hell with the recession doom and gloom! The economic crisis is a great time for small scale producers, designers and startups to go into business, with lower costs for materials and rent.
In the last couple of years, cottage industry has come on in leaps and bounds with new designers invigorating the market place all around the country.
Like mushrooms, pop up shops and once off markets appear out of nowhere overnight, making Dublin an exciting and fresh place to be.
Irish retailers are clubbing together (or setting themselves apart) to offer better value and better quality in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
Support Irish designers, craftspeople and businesses this Christmas by buying Irish. Here are just a few ideas of where to start your shopping in the capital this year:
Designist is the coolest thing to happen to George’s Street since Foko (and that’s going back a while). They specialise in stocking awesome Irish product design, mostly household items. A sample of their wares include the extremely popular Palm lampshades from Klickity design studio and awesome upside down planters(hint).
- Some more relative newcomers are Industry Design, with a whole range of up-cycled, revamped and reclaimed goods for the green-inclined in their shop in Smock Alley, off Cow’s Lane in Templebar (an excellent street for boutique design…and cakes).
- The Irish Design Shop on Bow Lane, Dublin 2, have some gorgeous stock, all designed and made in Ireland.
- The Kilkenny Shop on Nassau Street has been toting the wares of Irish designers for over 40 years, for traditional and big name Irish design and crafts.
- The Design Corner is a pop up shop in Dun Laoghaire, south Dublin, where 22 local craftspeople and designers have come together to sell and showcase their work.
- Rise Creatives have an online store to showcase and sell their members work.
- Perhaps you are tired of chic and urban design and would prefer a little gamminess? Gammy Christmas Jumpers are back again this year.
The Dublin Flea Market graces the Newmarket Square co-op, Dublin 8, on the last Sunday of every month and the Christmas edition boasts bric a brac, crafts, art and food.
- The Brocante Market also takes place in the co-op in Newmarket Square, on the third Sunday of every month. It plays host to furniture, antiques, prints, collectibles and other retro gear. I especially like a regular Brocante stall, Trentanove Lighting, a husband/wife team who create amazing and original light fixtures from found materials.
- The Grand Social host the Ha’Penny Flea market every Saturday. Expect books clothes, vintage trinkets and hipsters galore.
- The excellent Ranelagh Arts Centre are holding a pop up boutique market from 10-18th, supported by the Crafts Council of Ireland and showcasing the work of over 20 talented Irish designers. There seems to be a little bit of everything with jewellery, ceramics, print, textiles and lighting.
You can find more information on shops, bargains or gift ideas on Twitter, using the #buyirish hash tag. If anyone has any other suggestions of shops or designers with nifty stuff for Christmas then please share them in the comments below. Happy Christmas!