I bet your all sick to the feckin teeth of me banging on about buying locally and buying Irish. But when I find a company thats passionate about what they do, its hard to pass them by. Quality stuff that has some serious lovin' going on behind the scenes and shockingly enough, a lot of the time a single handily run business, Irish is the way to go. Sure why wouldn't you buy something gorgeous thats made almost right on your door step!?
With all the festive cheer thats happening this time of year I headed to the RDS National Crafts And Design Fair. I armed myself with 4 tinfoil sambos, 3 sets of warm tops, 2 sparkly sets of fingernails and 1 granny. I was set for the day to roam about and see what amazing things the good folk of Ireland had to offer me. Heres a little list of some quality things I found on the day and others I discovered online. Perfect pressies for all!
Avokado&Co: I just happened to stumble upon this site on the Twitters a while ago and my god I'm in love with everything on it. All 100% Irish, they make signs and other bits that have Irish saying on them. I think these would be a great gift for a loved one who might be over seas, as they are flat and easy to wrap and post. A little bit of home right on your wall. I want one of everything. Seriously, mammy!!
Chic Treat Box: Do you know a lady that has everything? Then a subscription to the Irish Chic Treat Club is just what you need for her! Each month she'll get something new to try, delivered right to her door. The gift that keeps giving! You'll be in the good books for ages after.
The Purple Pantry: I know lots of foodies, or even the odd friend who just really loves different jams. This company has everything a food lover could ask for, all bundled into gorgeous packaged boxes with purple ribbons! Yes, I'll take one of everything thank you very much. *grumbling tummy starts*
Daisy Chain Crafts: This lovely lady hails from Wicklow and is an utter delight to talk to. She makes the most beautiful soaps, candles, bath and body treats for next to nothing. Just mind blowing considering the time and effort thats put into everything! Make sure and give her a call or an email to see what lovely new sets she has especially for Christmas. You wont be sorry!
The Irish Fairy Door Company: I saw this on the LateLate Toy Show, but I was aware that they were taking little people of Ireland by storm. These are cute fairy doors that you apply to the skirting board in your house. Your little people can leave or receive gifts, letters and anything you would like. Their imagination runs wild - I've seen it happen lots with my little nieces and nephews. Big winner to get this Christmas for little ones.
Emmas So Naturals: Someone asked if this company pays me to talk about them and I promise you they don't! I just love them that much, that I talk about them all the time. I think these are some of the best Irish candles on the market and theres not one scent I don't love. I could talk about their limited edition Christmas scents for hours.
Holos: Niamh is the lady behind Holo Skincare. Its a recent discovery for me, but oh mammy I can't get over how beautiful her products are. There are the most lovely gift sets for daughters to grannies and even the men of your life! I can safely say, I'll be asking for a set or two from Santy this year. The facial oil I currently have is being got asap when it runs out!
Ambri Boards: This is the perfect thing to impress the in-laws with or the chef in your life. Irish crafted Irish wood chopping boards all the way from Kerry, one of my favourite places in Ireland. You can personalise them and there are gift sets too.
Secrets Ireland: I bang on about Secrets like theres no tomorrow, but really how could you not love a good old Irish sex toy shop run single handedly by one lovely lady! Naturally not all these toys will be Irish, but supporting small Irish businesses instead of big companies is important. And the man or woman in your life will be thanking you too if they receive something sexy under the Christmas tree.
Blank Canvas Cosmetics: If you've not heard of this Irish company then you must be living under a rock. All the beautiful brushes and make up palettes you could ever dream of and all only a stone throw away from any part of Ireland. I personally have an eye shadow palette on my santy list this year!
EmerMcLysaght Jewellery: Its not often I come by hand made jewllery that makes me stop and do a double take. Everything on this site is handmade by Emer who hails from Dublin. From leaf necklaces to top hat cufflinks, theres something for that very special man or woman in your life. I am in love with the lot.
Nima Brushes: Some of the most gorgeous brushes that you'll ever come across are the Nima brushes. Owned by Irish gal Niamh Martin, you needn't look further then one of her beautiful sets. With so many to choose from, theres something for everyones pocket.
Paw Pals: These are a new Irish pet company. I always buy my pets a special something at Christmas and give friends pets a little present too - please tell me other do this too and I'm not totally mad! I thought the idea of different hampers was a brilliant idea! I'd love to get the cat one for my two.
Bia Beauty: A brand I regularly use and love, this lady is from Cork. She makes the most beautiful natural products you could want, all in beautifully presented gift boxes. Theres nothing I love more then the cleansing face scrub. Top quality and all Irish.
Don't be afraid to ask when your in a shop or send a quick email online when you see something you like thats marked as Irish. How Irish is it really? Is everything that can be, from the little emerald isle? From the sticker to the lavender in the ingredients list sourced in Ireland. If your happy to just go by the sign or site information, then happy days. But if your into really supporting your local, then don't be afraid to question it. Most of the time people are delighted you've the interest in their products and are happy to tell you.
You can see my 20 stocking fillers under €20 over here. Theres lots of Irish brands there that haven't been mentioned in this gift guide, so have a gander!