Design Ireland debuts at New York's 'Shoppe Object' curated trade show
- 31 Jul 2019
- Read Time: 6 mins
Six Design Ireland brands have been selected to participate in New York’s Shoppe Object show which takes place between the 10th and 12th of August at Pier 36 on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Shoppe Object, which launched in 2017, is fast gaining a reputation as one of the most exciting and innovative home and gift shows in the United States and offers an expertly curated presentation of some of the most considered and beautiful brands to be found in the US and beyond.
The six Design Ireland brands travelling to New York for the Shoppe Object show this month are Caulfield Country Boards, Copperfish Lighting Company, Diem Pottery and Design Studio, Field Apothecary, Foxford Woollen Mills and Hanna Hats of Donegal.
These six brands, which represent the very best of Irish design and craft, have been specially selected by the curators of Shoppe Object.
The show represents an opportunity for the founders and representatives of these brands to meet with existing customers overseas, to develop new relationships with potential trade buyers and members of the press, and to meet fellow makers and designers at one of the most exciting new events on the international buying calendar.
The six brands attending the Shoppe Object show do so with the support of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland and Design Ireland.
The ethos of Shoppe Object is very much aligned with that of the Design Ireland brand, focusing on the inspiration and materials behind beautifully-designed and -made items that are imbued with authenticity and provenance
Brian McGee, Market Development Director of the Design & Crafts Council described Shoppe Object as an influential new show which is dedicated to celebrating and supporting the progressive retail and design community.
"This show provides a refreshing alternative to the more traditional trade fair by focusing on offering an engaging experience in a boutique environment," he said. "The ethos of Shoppe Object is very much aligned with that of the Design Ireland brand, focusing on the inspiration and materials behind beautifully-designed and -made items that are imbued with authenticity and provenance. These resonate with how consumers are seeking contemporary products that offer meaningful experiences and tell a story of the inspiration, the maker and the materials.”
Caulfield Country Boards, for example, one of the brands to travel to New York for the show, is a small family business run by brother and sister team Pearse and Louise Caulfield. The brand produces a range of contemporary tableware and kitchenware from sustainably-source hardwoods in Carnaross, Co. Meath.
Thomas Diem is a second-generation Irish potter and designer who was born in New York but has been living in Ireland since childhood. Thomas and his team at Diem Pottery and Design Studio in Ashbourne, Co. Meath, believe in creating beautiful and functional objects for the home such as vases, serving bowls and jugs in order to bring the aesthetic into the everyday and to elevate the ordinary moments of life.
Alix Mulholland, founder of Field Day, also produces Field Apothecary, a boutique capsule range of long-lasting and elegantly fragrant Irish candles which is created from 100 percent soya wax and high-quality essential oils. This stylish candle range echoes the scents and atmosphere of Ireland with names including Hay, Lichen, Peat and Rain.
Following on from the tailoring company founded in 1924 by David Hanna Senior, the journey of Hanna Hats began in 1964 when it started handcrafting bespoke headwear. Now a third generation business, Hanna Hats continues to make original designs which are assembled by hand from the highest quality tweed and which are inspired by the landscape of the founders' native Donegal.
Foxford Woollen Mills is surely one of the most well-recognised Irish heritage brands worldwide. Founded by the Irish Sisters of Charity on the banks of the River Moy in Co. Mayo in 1892, this long-established business has however evolved with time and is now one of Ireland’s most loved producers of both traditional and contemporary styles of blankets, throws and accessories incorporating beautifully soft merino and lambswool as well as cashmere and mohair. Run by Joe Queenan, Foxford Woollen Mills is one of the last working mills in Ireland yet continues to produce products that are just as relevant to the modern consumer as their antecedents were to our ancestors.
Karen Hennessy, Chief Executive of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, commented: “The Irish presence at this fair is a key element in our export strategy, positioning Irish design and craft within the vibrant US marketplace. Shoppe Object provides an invaluable opportunity for these six Irish brands to meet exclusive buyers and influencers in person. We wish each of the participating designers and makers every success at the show and look forward to seeing commercial opportunities unfold for them. We greatly appreciate the support and assistance of the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Enterprise Ireland in bringing these Irish designers and makers to New York.”