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BUY IRISH | GIFT IDEAS FOR EVERYONE| HANDMADE GIFTS
Holly Jolly Season BY
The most wonderful time of the year is upon us and the time we love. There is a secret for not getting stressed out and it's called preparation. This gift guide has been put together by the team of Bia SĂĄsta, MAKE! and TĂş Magazine and offers something for everyone with the focus on Irish made and we even threw in some ideas for DIY fans - nothing says Merry Christmas more than something handmade with love and care. We have focused on Cork based businesses with a few others included as well - there have been so many ideas for a unique gift guide. We could have easily filled a thousand pages but we had to make a cut. When looking for that special Christmas gift, look around your own community first - it doesn't always have to be from a large corporate. It's in the small shops you find these unique gems that say 'I love you' and 'I care'. As our headquarter is located in Blarney, we have also added a small directory of Blarney businesses. Why not buy a voucher from any of them? Does your friend need glasses? Buy a voucher from a local optician - it's the small shops that need your support now more than ever. This Christmas will be different than any other - we have been through a weird year and at time of publishing, we don't know how December is going to be played out. One thing is sure, there will be no Christmas markets, Switching on the Lights and I am not even sure how mass in our church will be like this year. Whatever it will be, we will be making the best of it. Now, sit back, pour yourself a nice cup of tea or even a glass of mulled wine and enjoy this gift guide - you will feel all festive. Merry Christmas from Elke & The Team
Support Local Never has it been more essential to support your local shops as this year. The lockdowns have threatened family businesses more than past recessions. At Christmas, we are all about the gift and online shopping is rising since the start of the first lockdown. Not every shop is in the position to offer online or mail order services but might be able to sell gift vouchers etc. through phone orders. Local notice boards are great places to learn about local offers by shops, artists and crafters.
er h c Vou t f i G
A gift doesn't have to be a product, why not gift a cookery class, craft workshop, massage therapy, yoga classes or a gym membership. You are giving something more than just a once off gift but an experience. For children a cookery class benefits the parents as much as the kids Ireland has some amazing cookery schools who are specialised in children's cookery. 2020 has been a strain on many people and we are all in need for some extra TLC - vouchers for foot reflexology or massages might just be the ticket a loved one needs this Christmas. The following pages are dedicated to Irish or Irish-made gift ideas.
Shop local in Blarney A list of businesses in Blarney
Blarney is worth a trip any day of the year - pop into one of the shops when you visit and buy a gift or even just a voucher.
Sinead's Hairdresser, Cloghroe, Blarney - very talented crew Horgan's Gift Store, The Square, Blarney - beautiful gifts for everyone Blarney Wellness Centre, Ashdale House, Blarney - reflexology, counselling etc. Centra, The Square, Blarney - get your grocery Blarney Woollen Mills, Blarney - gifts, fashion, interior Blarney Castle - gift a membership Blarney Filling Station - a voucher goes a long way Ann O'Sullivan Optician - a voucher clears the view Pharmacy First Plus, Grenagh & Tower - more than just a pharmacy iFix, Ashdale House, Blarney - check your IT needs SVP Shop, The Square, Blarney - gifts don't have to be new but could do good Young Acryl Art, Millstream Road, Blarney - let your inner artist out Youngstars Music School, Blarney - let the music play Guilty Pleasures Beauty Salon, Blarney - beautification at its best EMF Eoin Murphy Fitness - fitness with laughter included Food in Blarney Blarney Castle Hotel The Square Table Claddagh EatIt The Old Post Office Cafe Golden Panda The Mills at Blarney Woollen Mills Muskerry Arms Lantern House Waterloo Inn
Eat your way through Blarney
Please note that the list is not comprehensive
Online Shopping Biscuit Market Place An “Irish Etsy” has just launched and buying Irish has never been so stylish. Finding fashionable and innovative Irish-made products in one place online has suddenly become possible thanks to The Biscuit Marketplace. Serial entrepreneur, Irish design champion, and Ted Talker Tara Prendergast has unleashed the beautifully curated Biscuit Marketplace and rocketed Irish Design into a trendy and covetable new realm. The online store features innovative and design-led lifestyle products including jewellery, children’s gifts, homewares and more. “Irish design isn’t just for tourists. This marketplace is a digital space for trendy, innovative, and quirky design that happens to be Irish,” said Tara Prendergast. “This is an online shop for the global marketplace. It’s proof that Irish makers can comfortably stand alongside international designers.
In 2015 she set up a Facebook group for Irish creatives to support and connect with one another. However, it’s membership exploded to 6.5K and soon became an underground railway for Irish shoppers to seek out and buy from Irish makers. “That’s when I knew there was a huge chasm between Irish creatives and Irish shoppers,” said Tara. “The Biscuit Marketplace will bridge that chasm.” Featured products
”The Biscuit Marketplace is a finely curated online space that puts the spotlight on makers, tells their stories, and showcases their products. Shoppers can purchase items instantly or speak directly with the vendors. “Shopping local is a greener way to shop and it’s better for the economy and the country, but unless we’re being offered items that are as good as or better than the international competition, it’s not a sustainable approach,” said Tara. “The Biscuit Marketplace is where you’ll find the best of the best that just so happens to be local.” Tara Prendergast is perfectly placed to curate this marketplace. With 20+ years of experience working in the business world, her passion has always been supporting indigenous design. In 2017, she launched The Biscuit Factory, a consultancy for makers and creators in Ireland.
Get your hands stuck in with these great ideas. Check out your local art & craft shop for more options
Valg Studio is well known for their handmade jewellery. This year, the team has gone a step further and are offering DIY kits - great introduction to jewellery making from €41.40 (on sale) www.valgstudio.com
The Bumblebee Flower Farm DIY Wreath Kit includes all materials and is accompanied by a full, in-depth tutorial so you can start a new family tradition right from the comfort of your own home! https://bumblebeeflowerfarm.ie
Vibes & Scribes in Cork have a range of craft kits available. Choose from embroidery, glass painting, candle making and more. V & S also offers online ordering and delivery Kits from €7 https://www.vibesandscribes.ie/
Learn Lino cutting and printing with this kit by Art & Hobby. The kit contains everything you need to start this artistic craft from €35 www.artnhobby.ie
Jewellery Handcrafted jewellery is unique and made with love and care. Treat your loved one or yourself this year with Irish made jewellery We are big fans of Delabud Designs. Del O'Leary creates beautiful pieces with homegrown flowers and resin as well as stunning polymer pendants. from â&#x201A;Ź8 http://delabudcreations.com
The Wild Felter brings nature close with her hand-felted creations that are transformed into beautiful earrings and brooches. Also available are mugs, paperweights and cards Earrings from â&#x201A;Ź20 https://thewildfelter.ie Luna Maille is well known for her stunning creations using metal and gemstones. High quality and creativity sets her pieces apart from mass produced items. Prices vary Find Luna Maille on Facebook & Instagram
Sometimes you just need something a bit different. Wild Wire Ireland is the place to go for crocheted wire jewellery. We simply love the bracelets available on her Etsy shop. Prices vary Find Wild Wire Ireland on Facebook & Etsy
Hampers Hampers are a great gift idea and can be filled with almost everything. When buying a food hamper, keep an eye on Use By dates. Check your local deli who might be able to create bespoke hampers with local products Bradley's in Cork's North Main Street is well know for one of the best artisan food selections they also happen to have one of the best craft beer collections in Cork. Gift one of the wonderful hampers available to order from their website http://www.bradleysofflicence.ie
Another food hero of ours is Urru in Bandon, Co. Cork. Ruth's Irish Goodie Gift Tray contains everything you need to put a smile on your face Prices from â&#x201A;Ź65 www.urru.ie
Hampers don't always have to be based on food, Irish Company Hamper & Co are offering hampers for every occasion. A baby due and you can't visit? No worries with these lovely baby gifts Prices vary https://hampersandco.com
Love in a Box got something for everyone including wedding gifts etc. Each box is curated with high quality content Prices vary www.loveinabox.ie
Ireland has experienced a worldwide appreciation of Irish-made drinks, from whiskey over gin to beer. Here we have listed our favourites Bushmills is made in Co. Antrim for more than 400 years - so they do know a thing or two about distilling whiskey
Created by Alex Thomas, one of a few female master blenders in the industry, The Sextonâ&#x201E;˘ is made from 100% Irish malted barley and is triple distilled for smoothness in copper pot stills.
After winning many awards for their gin Bertha's Revenge, Ballyvolane Spitis have now added this beautiful Sloe Gin - perfect for a little tipple in front of the fire Jameson Whiskey is one of the best loved whiskeys worldwide but try to get your hands on this beautiful Redbreast Lustau, Having spent its final maturation journey in casks seasoned with the finest Oloroso Sherry in the Bodegas Lustau, the result is the ultimate sherried style of Redbreast. Red Earl is made in Kinsale and is inspired by Red Hugh O Donnell, Earl of Tyrconnell. The whiskey is exceptionally smooth hence making this an ideal whiskey for 'beginners' who are just starting their whiskey journey.
Irish Craft Beer has exploded onto the world stage of craft beer, sweeping up awards at international award's competitions. There are too many to showcase them all here but check with your local offlicense, they will be able to advise you on locally made beers.
Food We already featured hampers but your deli might not be able to feature your favourite. Here are some producers we think are worth buying from Chef Sham Sauces are available in four flavours Chilli Ketchup, One for All sauce, Sweet Chilli and Hoi Sin Sauce. Made in small batches, each bottle is delicious. Available directly from http://chefshamsauces.com/
All wild berries, flowers and herbs are handpicked by the whole Greene family and transformed by Sharon into syrups, shrubs and preserves in small batches. www.wildirishforagers.ie
Mark & Kyle run a honey and beekeeping business called OpenHive and are committed to keeping and rearing native black Irish bees in an environmentally sustainable fashion. You can buy their raw honey online on www.openhive.ie
We are huge fans of Poitin Marmelade by Betty Smith's A Taste of Irish Spirit. She can be normally found at food festivals and craft markets. For stockists, please find her on Facebook under A Taste of Irish Spirit
Gifts Gifts for for Food Food Lovers Lovers
We have found the perfect gifts for the food lover in your life - handmade knives, personalised slates or handcut chopping boards - we got you covered In a little workshop in the middle of a farm behind the cheese dairy, Fingal makes a selection of culinary knives. You might find it difficult to be added to the waiting list but it is worth a try. In the meantime, you might get the t-shirt. www.fingalfergusonknives.com Mimi & Dan is a small family business based in North Dublin. Each board is made by hand and engraved. Using nourishing oils and protective wax each board is long-lasting. Find Mimi & Dan on Facebook or contact on firstname.lastname@example.org
Husband and wife team Ed and Tara Hammond, SLATED create beautiful slate homeware inspired by tradition with each slate handcut by Ed. We love these personalised slates - the cheese board is on our wishlist. www.slated.ie
The names Rory O'Connell & JP McMahon are names food lovers recognise immediately. These cookbooks should be part of any cookbook library Available at bookstores nationwide
Ireland has some amazing artists - we are only able to show a few. Check out Shop In Ireland on Facebook for many more options
Bring rural Ireland to your home with these beautiful paintings by Alison Barry, available as originals or prints, prices starting from â&#x201A;Ź39 (photo: collage of paintings, not one painting) www.etsy.com/ie/shop/Alisonbarryart
Emer Hickey is an artist from Blarney - after finishing her art's degree, she only went to London to become a scenic artist at a theater. She creates stunning linoprints, each piece printed by hand after carved into lino. Find her on www.etsy.com/ie/shop/EmerHickeyPrints
Karen Hickey creates quirky, colourful paintings, each with its own story. Her studio is in the iconic Cliff at Lyons Hotel in Celbridge. Her paintings are sure to bring joy to everyone www.artistkarenhickey.com
Give a piece of Cork this Christmas with drawings from CorkIDoodleDo. Any iconic place from Grand Parade to Sextant hand drawn and coloured with love & care. Perfect for someone living abroad http://www.corkidoodledo.com/
Selfcare Fiona at Little Red handcrafts natural seaweed skincare using Atlantic Irish Seaweed. Products include lipbalm, handcream, cleansers and facecream . A giftset is available from www.littlered.ie
Bend in the Barrow is making skincare with the environment in mind. From soaps to balms, we love the idea of the shaving cream in a bowl - gift set with shaving brush from â&#x201A;Ź32 www.bendinthebarrow.ie
Take care of yourself at Blarney Wellness Centre. Bethan & Pat offer counselling, foot reflexology, massage, yoga, meditation, head massage and everything you need to feel relaxed http://blarneywellnesscentre.ie/
Teenage skin can be troublesome - we all have been there. Holos has created a Teen Queen Skincare set aimed at the young skin. www.holos.ie
Sustainable Wicklow-based husband and wife team Robert & Berilyn are creating interesting pieces from recycled drinking cans, each piece unique. Prices from â&#x201A;Ź49 www.etsy.com/ie/shop/RobBeeArt
Ragbone is a business based in Cork, creating bags from salvaged, donated and repurposed fabrics. every piece is unique and made with love and care. www.ragbone.ie
Colum Burke is creating beautiful lamps from recycled bottles. Each is handcrafted and unique. Perfect for a New Home gift or simply keep it yourself Currently on Instagram under mulocster only
Willow Domes look beautiful in any garden and Rose Hanley is a master in creating these sustainable garden ornaments. Watch it grow throughout the seasons and create your own little world in your garden http://ilovegettingcrafty.com/
Fashion Pom Pom Hats by Veronica is a favourite of our team. Each hat is hand knitted or crocheted with love, care and a lot of talent. Baby clothes and shawls are also available. Find Pom Pom Hats by Veronica on Facebook
Beautifully handmade rompers by Cali & Co. IE - a company started in Cork by Cali's mum. Each Romper can be personalised with the child's name. www.etsy.com/shop/CaliandcoIE
Virginie is a designer & ceramist who designs the most beautiful kimonos. These come in two length and it will be hard to choose between the stunning fabrics. Virg also creates leather cowls and earrings that can be matched to your outfit www.onthevergeonline.com
Changeling.ie creates beautiful one-of-a-kind corsets and gowns, not only for weddings but any special occasion you want to let our your inner princess www.changeling.ie
Kids Alphabet Jigsaws design & create original handcrafted wooden Jigsaw puzzles for kids of all ages with a range of over 60 original products that include Alphabets, Numbers, Maps and Jigsaws As Gaeilge. Prices from â&#x201A;Ź20 www.alphabetjigsaws.com
Style your kids with these beautiful hand-knitted clothes by Co-Z Creations. Based in Dublin, the team is accepting custom order. Find Co-Z Creations on Facebook
A babaGnu is a colourful cosy loop scarf for kids and are all handmade in Dublin Ireland using gorgeous colourful and cosy organic and oeko-tex certified fabrics. www.babagnu.ie
Colour me Hunny Bunny is the brainchild of Izabela Zaremba - printing her drawings onto pillow covers for the smallies to colour in. After washing, the motives can be coloured in again and again. Different motives available from â&#x201A;Ź15 Find Colour me Huny Bunny on Facebook
Homeware Sometimes, just adding a new shade to an old lamp can brighten up a room. At Fabricate Ireland, you will find beautiful lampshades, pillows & bags - each one can be customized to suit your interior. There doesn't seem to a limit to artist Karen's talent as she also creates beautiful textiles scenes and holds workshops. A one-stop shop for your interior needs https://fabricateireland.com
If you ever wanted a unique piece of furniture, handmade from Irish wood that you won't find on the high street? Noel Murphy is your man. A wooden sink anyone? http://noelmurphywoodproducts.com/
Give the postman something to smile about with these handpainted letter boxes from YAA Blarney - and while you are at it, get your drawing & painting material as well. Find Young Acrylic Art on Facebook
Beautifully made ceramics add warmth to a home like these handmade vases from Ceramifique. Each piece is unique using the 'bubble' technique. www.ceramifique.com
Gifts Maura O'Connell is a life caster, creating memories of baby's feet and hands. During lockdown, Maura adapted her business and is offering now kits to take fingerprints which she then casts in silver and creates beautiful pendants. www.westcorkcastingstudio.ie
Charlie Mahon Ceramics is located in Little Island, Cork where he creates beautiful handpainted ceramic bowls, platters & mugs www.westcorkcastingstudio.ie
Who would have thought that face masks are becoming fashionable. Pat Murphy at Blarney Artsy Craftsy handsews all masks, custom orders and different styles are available Find Blarney Artsy Craftsy on Facebook
Gift the Past with a look into your family history with Irish Family Search. Seamus Fox has worked with many people tracing their family's background as well as being regularly consulted by press & TV www.irishfamilysearch.com
Pets Antoinette Fennell runs Tails & Tales and creates beautiful paintings of your pet in so much detail that you believe it to be real. Her paintings are available in monochrome, colour and charcoal. www.tailsandtales.ie
A father & daughter team make these funky Bird & Cat houses and donate the proceeds to Protecting Pound Dogs & Ash Animal Rescue. Find Glamping for Cats & Birds on Facebook
Dress your dog stylish this Christmas with these handmade outfits from Peppy's Pullovers. All handmade in Cork, choose from knitted jumpers, fabric coats, bandanas and more Find Peppy's Pullovers on Facebook
Let your pet's inner punk out with a collar from Bling Pet Collars for cats and dogs. Change the collar with the seasons or occasion - your are spoilt for choice www.etsy.com/ie/shop/blingpetcollarsire
Subscriptions The gift that keeps giving - a subscription doesn't have to mean a magazine - flowers, whiskey, cheese and more
Bradley's Off-License in Cork's North Main street is a mecca for craft beer and whiskey lovers. Michael started offering his whiskey flask service to encourage people to try a whiskey before buying the bottle. From â&#x201A;Ź20 http://www.bradleysofflicence.ie
Irish grown flowers delivered directly to you from the BumbleBee Flower Farm in West Cork. Mags grows the most beautiful flowers and arranges them skillfully into stunning bouquets www.bumblebeeflowerfarm.ie
Irish gin has won awards on a global stage over the last few years. Blackwater Distillery is now offering the Taster Club - every two months a box with 2 gins will be sent including tasting notes and cocktail recipes. www.blackwaterdistillery.ie
The Cheese Club offered by Sheridan's Cheesemongers is the perfect gift for the cheese lover in your life. Each month a selection of cheese is shipped to a happy recipient Taste notes are also included www.sheridanscheesemongers.com
Classes Wooden Spoons Cookery School in Killeens, near Blarney runs fun kid's cookery camps throughout the year. Their birthday parties with the birthday boy/girl being made headchef are legendary. www.woodenspoons.ie
Playing an instrument is a wonderful skill to have and Youngstars Music School in Blarney is the perfect spot. Classes are currently online but will be moved to classroom again when possible. Anna Mitchel is a professional musician and successful singer/songwriter www.youngstarsmusicschool.com
Learn the art of Stained Glass from glass artist James Nichols who gives regular classes in Carrigaline, Blackrock and Cobh as well as private tuition. www.nichollstudio.weebly.com
Screenprinting is a great way to create art and the Cork Printmakers are offering courses to learn this wonderful craft. Currently closed, vouchers for upcoming classes can be purchased www.corkprintmakers.ie
Charity Charity Charities this year - more than ever before need our help to continue their support for people in dire circumstances. Here is a selection of deserving charities we love to support. Dogs for the Disabled is a unique charity founded in 2007 to improve the lives of children and adults living with physical disabilities in Ireland. They deliver approximately 25 fully trained assistance dogs each year to their profoundly disabled partners. Dogs for the Disabled operate on a budget of c. â&#x201A;Ź300,000 per year, who have 5 core staff and the rest of the team is made up of wonderful volunteers. www.dogsfordisabled.ie Pieta House provides free therapy to those engaging in selfharm, with suicidal ideation, or bereaved by suicide. Every year, crucial funds are raised with the Darkness into Light Walks across the country. This year, the charity wasn't able to organise the walks and are in need of additional funds - their work has increased during the pandemic. www.pieta.ie/ St Vincent de Paul is a charity that helps people in need - by providing food, shelter, money, clothing and more to families who are struggling. SVP is a local charity, meaning that your money stays in your community to help people within. Keep an eye open for their annual Christmas Appeal www.svp.ie
SHARE was founded in 1970 by students from Presentation Brothers College, who raised funds to try and make existing housing for Cork Cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s elderly more comfortable. One of the most well-known elements of the fundraising is the SHARE Christmas campaign which includes the blessing of the crib in the city. It has become a tradition of the festive season in Cork and the crib is staffed by students right up until Christmas Eve to encourage people to donate to the worthy cause. http://sharecork.org
Here are some shops in Blarney and surrounds worth supporting - most of them have Click & Collect options available.
Erin Giftshop is located near the entrance of the world famous Blarney Castle and specialise in all things Irish. Erin Giftstore and its sister company Erin Knitwear is an Irish-owned family business established in 1964. Why not send a piece of Ireland to friends and family abroad this year with one of their hampers? www.eringiftstore.com
Horgan's of Blarney are a long-standing family business in the heart of Blarney, loved by tourists and locals alike. Check out their website or pop into the shop when safe to do so to see their Christmas range of gifts. www.horgans.ie
If you love crafts, then you will love Vibes & Scribes Craft Shop in Bridge Street, Cork City. Over three floors, the shop is packed with everything the eager crafter would want. www.vibesandscribes.ie
Bradley's Off-License is a favourite of Cork's food lovers if you can't find something in your local shop, give Michael a call. www.bradleysofflicence.ie/
Thank you Christmas is the time to look back over the year and remember people & businesses that have helped, supported and guided us
Editor of the Muskerry News Kate Durrant is the heart & soul of Blarney, supporting several charities, tireless fundraising and still finding time to listen to individuals like myself with patience and wisdom
Pat Murphy & Bethan O'Riordan of Blarney Wellness Centre are not only writers for Tú Magazine but have been a support to people in need by handing out handmade masks to frontline workers and offering a listening ear
Judy Wilkins of Rising Sons Brewery - beer writer par excellence, Judy and the brewery have been supporting Bia Sásta and Tú Magazine from the beginning with a generosity that is still mindblowing
The Blarney & District Chamber of Commerce and its members are supportive to Bia Sásta and Tú Magazine. The expertise and knowledge amongst its members is outstanding.
1 x cardboard 50cm x 50cm 2 x cardboard 20cm x 50cm Paint (we used emulsion in red) Gold Acrylic (we used metallic) Fringe (make your own out of paper Glitter & glue Masking tape Cutting knife Fabric
Attach the two side panels to the large square on each side with masking tape (inside and outside) leaving a small gap. This will be the hinges. Cut a square of 30cm x 30cm in the upper half of the main square leaving enough space to attach the curtains. Paint in red, leave to dry. Dry-brush acrylic gold over the red paint. Decorate with fringe and write Theatre on the upper part. Decorate at your heart content Measure your fabric to create two panels of curtains. Attach to the back of the theatre (we used a plastic rod attached to the back so that we could open and close the curtains).
50cm x 50cm
30cm x 30cm
20cm x 50cm
20cm x 50cm
Make it Puppet Theatre
Make it Hand Puppets You Need: Felt in different colours Googly Eyes Glue Beads Ribbons Bits & Bobs Template
These puppets are super easy to make and can entertain kids for hours. First, download a puppet template from the internet. Using the templates, cut out two puppets. We didn't sew the halves together first but it is up to you if you decorate before or after you sew the puppets together. Cut out 'dresses' from the different coloured felt, adore with gems and beads and create 'hair' from wool. Add the googly eyes. Sew wrong sides together and turn inside out. Make as many as you like.
Make it Napkin Rings You Need: Toiletpaper Rolls Burlap Ribbon Acrylic Gold Paintbrush Heatgun Faux flowers Ribbon Bows (mini) Measure the toiletpaper rolls into the height you want your napkin rings to be and cut to size (slightly smaller width than the burlap ribbon). Paint the inside of the rings with metallic acrylic paint and leave to dry. Cut the burlap ribbon to the length to cover the sides of the rings and attach with hot glue, matching the ends. Take the faux flowers and arrange them into little bunches and attach with hot glue where the ribbons meet to cover the seam. Add the mini bows
Make it Snowflakes You Need: White Cotton Yarn Crochet Hook Pattern Fabric Stiffener These little snowflakes are adorable and look great on any Christmas tree (use different colours to suit your theme). I downloaded free crochet patterns from Pinterest. Use different patterns to create a more interesting display. I hung mine on a wooden branch and added some greenery and mini baubles. Crochet as many snowflakes as you like - an uneven number always looks better (I had five). Pin on a flat surface (not timber and use pins and not nails as they will rust and destroy the pieces). Spray or brush (depending on what type of stiffener you are using) with the stiffener and leave to dry - best overnight. When dried, attach a string. If you like, brush the snowflakes with some thinned PVA glue and sprinkle glitter over it. The glitter will stick to the glue when dried.