Once upon a time, the most fabulous Irish-made item you could gift someone was a Waterford Crystal ashtray or a spiffing Aran jumper.
Thankfully, things have moved on considerably and, these days, a treasure trove of home-grown businesses offer a selection of luxury products of a standard that would impress the most spoilt and particular of giftees.
Here’s what to choose for the love of your life, your best friend, a treasured sister or a deserving mum.
Woolly Socks by Makers And Brothers: Made in Donegal especially for Makers & Brothers, these classic Irish socks are woven with a traditional flecked yarn. Exclusive to Makers & Brothers they are sure to last a long time, which makes them a luxe bargain at €15.
Pink Grapefruit Coffee Mug by Arran St. East: This architectural mug comes with two shapes in each set – in and out – so simply pick your favourite colour – cabbage, potato, pomegranate lemon or pink grapefruit and enjoy. €33, Arranstreeteast.
Tory Long jewellery: Dublin designer Tory Long’s 16k gold plated labradorite bracelet is just type of simple, stylish statement we’re all trying to make this season. €80 to order here.
Atlantavive Seaweed Baths: If you’ve ever experienced the curative benefits of a seaweed bath, you’ll understand why this age-old all-natural treat is trending once more. Sligo-based Atlantavive use a specific strain of brown seaweed know as Ocean Oak, harvested sustainably off the West Coast of Ireland, to make luxury bath soaks you can enjoy at home. 100 per cent organic, these soaks nourish the skin, removing the toxins that cause wrinkles, excess dryness or fluid retention. Stock up here.
Concret Forest Candle Holders: If mass-produced homewares aren’t your thing, check out Concrete Forest, a contempora
Modern Botany Oil: Essential oils are back on trend in a major way for 2017 and Cork-based Modern Botany are right on the money with their Modern Botany Oil. Ideal for moisturising, cleansing, stretch marks and scarring, it’s hypoallergenic, non-greasy and great for sensitive skin of all ages. A very reasonable €35, the oil is available online and in Lloyds Pharmacies nationwide.
Cloon Keen Candles: The Shelbourne Spa Candle’s fragrance was created by Galway-based Cloon Keen Atelier and pays tribute to the history of the Shelbourne hotel. The fragrance is inspired by the signing of the constitution in room 112. It’s an ethereal and meditative fragrance that opens with woody notes of gaiacwood and sandalwood, which figure the antique table on which the constitution was signed, while styrax gum evokes the inky scent of a fountain pen. €40 from The Spa at The Shelbourne.
Tito’s spoons: Florida born and Dublin reared Alberto Hogan is better known as Tito, or Tito The Spoon maker to give him his full title. Based in Galway for the last few years he’s spent his time there honing his craft: beautifully crafted spoons and kitchen utensils that any house proud cook would treasure. This pair are beech and €45 here.
Kathleen’s Pendant: The grandmother of Names Jewellery founder Laura Caffrey, Kathleen ran a “Coal Club” on her road in Kilmainham in the 1950’s. She would collect money from her neighbours on the terrace to budget for the coal in winter months. Now Laura has named the stunning Kathleen pendant after her and we’ll be saving our own pennies to nab one for ourselves. €140 at The Irish Design Shop.
Atlantic Equipment: Based in the Northwest of Ireland, Ashleigh Smith makes hard wearing backpacks, camera straps and carry equipment inspired by Atlantic adventure. This waterproof waxed backpack fits a laptop and it’ll last forever so it’s well worth the €135 price tag.
Do you have an Irish business we should know about? Email Katie.firstname.lastname@example.org.