Olann and Loves
A collection of beautiful, quirky and useful crafts and kits from Ireland and around the world that caught our eyes
Wooden Sign by Craft Shapes Ireland
A family-run business operated by the husband and wife duo Melvin and Maria, Craft Shapes Ireland utilises the most advanced techniques in laser and CNC technology to bring their customers a range of crafting shapes. They supply everything from free-standing names and embellishments to text for a frame or family trees.
Lora had heard about them when she was looking for an Irish based company to buy a plaque with her word of the year from. It’s nearly the end of May now and she’d deliberately not shared it on her blog, until we’d published (dedication to the magazine right there).
Maria adores creating new products and always has her head switched to “overdrive” when it comes to crafting ideas. Maria told us “Melvin has always been interested in using wood and woodworking machinery. I wanted to be able to buy crafting blanks in Ireland and when I found it difficult to source a supplier for all my needs I decided that instead of myself and every other crafter having to buy in from overseas, Melvin and I would begin to ‘Supply Irish’. Craft Shapes Ireland was born!”
Craft Shapes Ireland prides itself on offering a bespoke service and are happy to create whatever you need. How you finish your blanks is entirely up to you; painting, framed art, decoupage or a mixture of everything.
Prices start from a couple of euros up, the shipping rates are reasonable and delivery times quick.
Find out more about Craft Shapes Ireland by visiting their website or Facebook Page.
Shawl Pins by GardeningWitch Designs
Like most of us, Jane Hickman loves crafting and had been making project bags, stitch markers and shawl pins for herself and her friends for some time, before she toyed with the idea of selling them. Taking the plunge, Jane took a stall at Festiwool in 2014 and again in 2015 and 2016 and has now opened an Etsy Shop.
Gold or silver in colour, the shawl pins are made from aluminium wire, which means they are extremely light. Each pin is carefully finished to ensure there are no sharp ends to snag your woollies, perfect if you knit or crochet. They are ideal for holding your shawl in place or worn as a unique accessory. If you intend to use the pin on a woven fabric it might be worth noting that the tip is not very sharp and therefore may only be suitable if your weave is very open.
We love the way Jane presents her shawl pins, each is attached to a hand decorated card, enclosed in a cellophane bag. When posted they are sent out in a rigid cardboard box with extra padding to protect them during transit.
If you’re wondering how Jane came up with her company’s name, we can tell you that she’s a keen amateur gardener living in a small Bedfordshire village. Hence the “Gardening” part of her name. And because of her passion for making things she is sometimes (lovingly) called a “cacky-fingered old witch”. Hence the “Witch” part of her name.
You can find GardeningWitch Design products via the website or the Etsy Shop and you can keep up-to-date with the latest GardeningWitch Design news via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Jane is also on Ravelry as GardeningWitch too.
Tableware by Every Tin
There is something about enamelware that catches the eye, doesn’t it? So, when we spotted Every Tin enamelware we knew we had to find out more. Made of porcelain fused onto heavy-gauge steel, Every Tin products are smooth, durable and chemical-resistant.
Having lived and worked in Ireland since 2011, Orsi and Timi spotted that many of their Irish friends used dishes for cooking and baking that were similar to the ones their family make back in Hungry. Their products are made in an environmentally friendly way. They’re bright and cheerful, they have long lasting colours, and won’t burn, even in an open fire. The dishes are lightweight, dishwasher friendly and can be used in oven and on gas, electric and induction hobs.
Orsi and Timi work full time and Every Tin is a new, customer-led business, so the couple have been concentrating on getting the brand out there. Every Tin products are available at shows and exhibitions around the Dublin area, but you can also find them on Facebook, where you can contact them directly.
Harry Potter Stitch Markers by Ewe Momma
Tracey, the maker behind EweMomma, creates from her home in Co Fermanagh, a 19th century converted school that still has the original school bell tower on the roof.
EweMomma was founded in 2014 when Tracey, a knitaholic, originally set up her Etsy shop as an outlet for her own designed hats, cowls and mittens. More recently, Tracey has turned her hand to dyeing yarn and her unique hand dyed yarns are also available to buy in her Etsy shop and at local craft collectives and markets across Northern Ireland.
Tracey also makes killer stitch markers, which she sells all over the world through her Etsy shop. You can choose from a split ring, lobster clasp or a lever back clasp, so they’re perfect for knitters and crocheters.
Small project bags and storage tins are the most recent addition to the shop, each of which has a knitting or crochet themed quote printed on which is guaranteed to make you smile, as well as helping keep your projects tidy when you’re on the go!
Project Bag by Emerald Fibres
Based near Banagher, in West Offaly, a stone’s throw from the Shannon, Ciara makes her handprinted canvas project bags which she sells under her brand Emerald Fibres. As the mother to two young boys, Ciara wanted a bag that would stand up to the abuse of daily life and developed her bags with utility in mind. As well as looking good, the Emerald Fibre bags are practical, sturdy and fully machine washable.
Drawing inspiration from everywhere, from the whimsical to the downright obscure, Ciara designs, draws and then carves blocks to print onto cotton canvas using professional fabric inks in an array of bright colours. The handle is made from sturdy cotton parachute webbing with cotton rope as a drawstring.
Ciara spilled the beans on an exciting, future collaboration between Emerald Fibres and an indie dyer, so we’ll be keeping an eye out for it.
The bags are €30 each and are available through the Emerald Fibres Etsy Shop, which is updated a couple of times a month with new bags. Ciara often take requests or suggestions from customers and you can stay in touch with her via Instagram.
Quicklets by Mouseloft
Mouseloft is a small family company that has been designing and making counted cross stitch kits in Cheshire since 1996.
Mouseloft kits are available in many sewing and crafting shops, and have several retailers here in Ireland. If there isn’t a stockist near to you, Mouseloft also sells direct to the public, via their website.
The kits come in two sizes – Stitchlets and Quicklets – both of which retail for pocket money prices. We’re looking at the Stitchlets kits in this issue, which are designed to fit within a 64mm diameter circle for framing. At present, there are 88 different designs available, including four new ones, one of which is this lovely Pug.
Retailing at around £2.39 the kits won’t break the bank and would make a lovely little gift popped into a greetings card. Each Stitchlets kit contains aida fabric (14hpi Zweigart), threads (DMC), a needle and full, easy-to-follow instructions.
If you’re new to counted cross stitch the helpful folk at Mouseloft have a page full of helpful tips and tricks to get you started.
You can see the full range of Mouseloft Counted Cross Stitch Kits and Accessories on their website here.
Ergonomics by Prym
Billed as the new generation of knitting needles, light, flexible and perfectly structured, Ergonomics have been developed with the human hand in mind. Prym have completely reinvented the knitting needle.
Currently available as straight, DPNs and fixed circular needles, Ergonomics have a drop-shaped tip, which optimises the picking up and gliding of your yarn. This round tip gently transforms into a triangular shaped shaft, which makes for freer stitches that glide easier.
The straight needles have an ingenious ‘click head’ (ends), which means you can clip your two needles together when you’re not knitting. THis essentially works as an integrated stitch stopper which makes it safer to transport your knitting.
The fixed circular Ergonomics are connected by a plastic-coated steel cord, which is free from the ‘memory effect’ of plastic cords. This does away with the need to constantly straighten them out.
The needles feel incredibly light and once we’ve published, we’ll have a little time to try them out properly. Rest assured we’ll report back on either the podcast or the blog.
Hopefully, you should be able to find Ergonomics in your local yarn shop and you can find more about the needles on the Prym website here.