Donegal firm to showcase their ware on national stage

Donegal tweed designerin the spotlight at national fair

By Staff Reporter

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By Staff Reporter

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Donegal tweed designerin the spotlight at national fair

Catriona McGinley.

Award winning local design firm Orwell and Browne will showcase their ware on the on the national stage at the National Crafts and Design Fair in Dublin’s RDS from November 30 to December 4.

The firm will represent Donegal’s centuries-old traditional of tweed manufacturing. The firm, who manufacture trendy notebooks and diaries from traditional Donegal tweed, will be among Ireland's top designers showcasing their work.

Record-breaking crowds of over 40,000 are expected to generate more than €1m per day in sales at over 600 stands at the event, which will last five days. 

Orwell and Browne was established in 2014 by local designer Catriona McGinley who has had the craft of weaving tweed passed down to her through five generations of her family.

“The craft of weaving tweed fabric has been a tradition in my family for the past five generations with a number of family members working within the tweed industry in south west Donegal,” said Catriona.

“My grandfather worked for a number of decades in the local tweed industry, hand-weaving at home for the local tweed mill and also working in the mill itself.

“When you buy one of our products you are also buying into a piece of Donegal history that has been part of our local heritage for centuries.

“Our tweed represents the mossy greens of Ireland, the earthy browns of turf and the soft purple of heather.

“The tweed used by Orwell & Browne is sourced locally in the South-West Donegal area.”

The annual fair is vital to the industry as a whole and it is estimated that it generates enough business to keep most of the exhibitors busy for at least four months of the year,” according to the organiser Patrick O’Sullivan.

“Everything from artisan foods to fashion and jewellery are on display and because the goods are handmade, they have the added distinction of being unique.

“We’re also very proud of the fact that the fair has grown and has added annually to the local economy, with footfall consistently growing by 10% per annum over the past five years. 

With so much diversity under one roof, and prices starting from as little as €5, the Fair offers Ireland’s largest Christmas gift shopping experience.

There will also be a Spectacular Christmas Food Emporium which will feature over 120 artisan food producers, taste-tempting visitors with the best of the season’s fare.

In addition, there will be 10% off everything at the Fair on the opening day, Wednesday, November 30.

The National Crafts and Design Fair 2016 takes place at the RDS Main Hall from Nov 30 – Dec 4 from 10am each day.  Full details and booking can be found at www.nationalcraftsfair.ie