Irish Design Shop
Dublin’s Irish Design Shop has been going strong since 2008, making good on a mission to promote the very best of both traditional and modern Irish craft. Their compact store on arguably the city centre’s trendiest street does a lot with a little – owners Clare Grennan and Laura Caffrey fill the shelves with desirable pieces by the contemporary designers who excite them, such as ceramicist Adam Frew and satchel maker Ashleigh Smith of The Atlantic Equipment Project. The pair also produce their own jewellery brand Names in the workshop upstairs.
Irish Design Shop, 41 Drury Street, Dublin, Ireland, +353 1 679 8871
Maven furniture and homeware shop in Belfast is run by the McGinnis sisters, who use their killer eyes for interior style to curate a dream selection of products comprising a mixture of mainly Scandinavian and Irish items. Brands here span from the local – such as County Down-based product design studio Donna Bates Design and Belfast’s own Father’s Father, who make leather goods by hand – to major international design brands like ferm LIVING and Muuto. These décor-savvy siblings know their craft so well that they also provide interior design consultation services. In 2016, they even collaborated with Belfast ceramicist Derek Wilson on a limited edition line of hand-thrown beakers.
Coffeewerk + Press
Set in the effervescent cultural hub that is the Latin Quarter of Galway, Coffeewerk + Press is a craft shop and café with a clear objective: ‘to showcase the overlap between Irish and international art and design over the perfect cup of coffee’. This hugely popular neighbourhood store is beloved by all who crave quality design as much as, if not more than, their daily caffeine fix. And the tastefully stocked upstairs shop – brimming with locally made Tweed Project totes, ferm LIVING wire baskets and Arran Street East pottery and anything else you could possibly hope for – is the perfect place to find it.
Coffeewerk + Press, 4 Quay St, Galway, Ireland, +353 91 448 667
Kilkenny Design Centre
Based in what locals call ‘the craft capital of Ireland’, Kilkenny Design Centre can boast an impressive location opposite the imposing Kilkenny Castle, inside the former coach and stable buildings of the Butlers, historic Earls of Ormonde. The store here stocks Irish fashion and textiles, woodwork, jewellery and much more, while the National Craft Gallery – also housed in Castle Yard – hosts regular exhibitions of contemporary craft and design. Currently showing is the Global Irish Design Challenge exhibition, showing 50 projects that address issues facing society, or respond to a problem in an innovative way.
The Old Mill Stores
The Old Mill Stores Independent General Homestore may be a little off the beaten track in the West Cork village of Connonagh, but that hasn’t stopped Claire Graham and Tom Keane’s shop from charming the entire country. This eclectic outlet won the title of Ireland’s Best Craft and Design Shop in 2016, a hard-fought accolade awarded by the Irish Times newspaper. The secret to their success? Meticulously sourcing ‘unusual, beautiful and design-led homewares and gifts’ that their customers will treasure.
One of the capital’s favourite home interiors shops, Article in Dublin’s Powerscourt Centre is special. Its ceiling is still embossed with the original plasterwork from when the space was the dressing room of the Viscount Powerscourt in 1780, and you get the feeling he would approve of its current use. Visitors here peruse the stock thoughtfully – including towering shelves of delicate ceramics and tableware – and speak in hushed tones, treating each carefully chosen article with the reverence it deserves.