Irish designers and makers to showcase their work in Japan

Posted 18.10.19

Design & Crafts Council of Ireland presents a capsule collection of brands from Ireland as part of an Enterprise Ireland trade and investment mission to Japan

Luxurious knitwear and Irish Tweed clothing by Irish designers and craftspeople will be part of a showcase of work in Tokyo this month. Aiming to raise awareness in the Japanese market of the quality and diversity of contemporary Irish design and craft, the Showcase Ireland initiative is a collaboration between the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and the Embassy of Ireland, Tokyo, to coincide with the official Ireland-Asia trade and investment mission led by Ireland’s Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys, T.D.

An exciting programme of events, taking place during the same week as Tokyo Fashion Week (14 – 20 October), will begin with an exclusive Showcase Ireland Reception which will be hosted by HE Paul Kavanagh, Irish Ambassador to Japan, at his residence on the evening of 16 October. The reception will be attended by distributors and importers of Irish and European goods, Japanese retailers and trade media in the apparel and lifestyle sector. Seven brand owners from Ireland will be present with their work: Magee 1866 (tweed); Fisherman Out of Ireland (knitwear); Molloy & Sons (textiles); Hanna Hats (tweed caps); Colin Burke (knitwear); Rathbornes 1488 (candles); and Reuben Avenue (fashion). Selected work from these seven brands will be on display on the evening along with that of 24 other Irish designers and makers.

The centrepiece of the reception will be the screening of Fí, a short film on Irish textiles and fashion by acclaimed director Perry Ogden in collaboration with Paula Hughes. The word Fí means to weave a fabric or a story, and it was also used in old Irish to describe interlacing and closely-knit communities. Presenting the work of over 40 designers, the film was commissioned by the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland to highlight the breadth of creative and manufacturing talent in Ireland’s fashion and textile sector. This beautifully crafted work of film weaves together Ireland’s breath-taking landscapes, the diverse faces of modern Ireland and exquisite fashion design – from both heritage tweed and linen companies to contemporary designers. It reflects how Ireland’s textile heritage in linen, lace, tweed, leather and knitwear finds a new energy when intertwined with contemporary design, sustaining regional and rural communities and their way of life in a changing world.

Other events taking place later in the week:

Irish Textiles Seminar, Friday 18 October
Placing a special focus on tweed and knitwear, an Irish Textiles Seminar in conjunction with Senken Shimbun will take place in Ireland House on Friday 18 October. The seminar will feature presentations by a number of Irish designers and makers and Yaichiro Nozawa, author of a Japanese book on Aran knitting. Topics will range from an introduction to Ireland and its rich heritage in craft to the history of the island’s renowned Aran knitwear and the meaning of the stitching patterns. Presentations will be followed by a panel discussion on knitwear and tweed.

Tweed Run Tokyo, Sunday 20 October
Concluding the busy programme of activities, representatives of the Irish delegation will also participate in Tweed Run Tokyo, on Sunday 20 October, flying the flag for Irish Tweed in this exciting annual cultural event. The Irish brands featured will include Magee 1866, Molloy & Sons in collaboration with Bernie Murphy, Studio Donegal, Hanna Hats and Fisherman Out of Ireland, all produced in Donegal. The Irish cyclists will be Brian McGee, Market Development Director, DCCoI; Rosy Temple, Marketing Manager, Magee; John Hayes, General Manager, Fisherman Out of Ireland; Siobhan Kehoe, Sales Director, Rathbornes 1488; and John Patrick Hanna, Sales Manager, Hanna Hats.

All Irish brands on show in Japan are exhibiting at Showcase – Ireland’s Creative Expo™ in Dublin, January 19 to 22, 2020. Showcase is one of the Ireland’s largest and most important international trade fairs which takes place in Dublin each January. The Design & Crafts Council of Ireland is the main driver behind this world-class annual fair focused on Irish creativity, offering visiting buyers an unparalleled opportunity to meet with over 400 of Ireland’s leading designers, manufacturers and craftspeople. The show, which marks its 44th edition in 2020, is promoted internationally by Enterprise Ireland and buyers attend Showcase from 26 countries around the world to source apparel, knitwear, jewellery and homeware lifestyle products from Ireland.

Additional information:

The 24 other Irish brands on display at the Showcase Ireland Reception are:

  • Studio Donegal (Irish Tweed)
  • Diem Pottery & Design Studio (ceramics)
  • Kopper Kreation (lighting)
  • Bogman Beanies (knitwear)
  • Red Rufus (soft toys)
  • Jill & Gill (fashion)
  • McConnell Woollen Mills (knitwear)
  • Bernie Murphy (fashion)
  • Mourne Textiles (textiles)
  • Scribble & Stone (jewellery)
  • Criostal na Rinne (crystal)
  • McNutt of Donegal (textiles)
  • Pearl Reddington (knitwear)
  • Fawe Collection (jewellery)
  • Jando (prints)
  • DANU Ceramics (ceramics)
  • The Dualist (fashion)
  • Ros Duke (knitwear)
  • John Hanly & Co. (textiles)
  • Nicholas Mosse (pottery)
  • Solvar (jewellery)
  • Jerpoint (glass)
  • Mucros Weavers (textiles)
  • J.C. Walsh (jewellery)

About Showcase
Showcase – Ireland’s Creative Expo™ is one of the country’s largest international trade shows.  The annual event attracts the buying teams from 2,580 retailers from across the world, including Ireland, the UK, USA, Mainland Europe and the Far East, generating sales orders of over €20 million during the four days of the show. Showcase is presented on behalf of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, with support from Enterprise Ireland in promoting the trade show internationally through their network of offices overseas, and the Local Enterprise Offices nationwide. More than 400 Irish brands are exhibited at the fair, including emerging Irish businesses supported by their Local Enterprise Offices. Showcase is for trade attendance only. www.showcaseireland.com

About the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland
The Design & Crafts Council of Ireland (DCCoI) is the national agency for the commercial development of Irish designers and makers, stimulating innovation, championing design thinking and informing Government policy. DCCoI's activities are funded by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation via Enterprise Ireland. DCCoI currently has over 60 member organisations and more than 3,000 registered clients. www.dccoi.ie

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