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Saturday November 11th marks National Harp Day/Lá na Cruite where the recently established umbrella organisation, Harp Ireland, Cruit Éireann, will celebrate all facets of the harp in Ireland. With venues all over Ireland resounding to the sound of harps at workshops, sessions, concerts, talks, and demonstrations of harp making, Powerscourt Centre is delighted to be involved. The DIT Ensemble and harpers including Méabh McKenna, Luke Webb, Tara Viscardi, Sinéad King, Síofra Ni Dhubhghaill and Anna Smozbathy will be performing in the Centre at 2pm. Attendance is free of charge.

National Harp Day is Cruit Éireann’s first major initiative to promote Ireland’s national instrument, encourage more people to learn the harp, attract new audiences and recognise the harp’s unique place in Irish musical and cultural life.

18 10 2017

Behind the Brands

With Lisa Sisk of This Is Knit

Powerscourt Centre is the hub of the creative quarter and is full of the most successful Irish designers and shops. We are thrilled to gain an insight behind some of these wonderful brands.

Next in the series, is Lisa Sisk, owner of This Is Knit,  an independent, family-owned yarn shop that is full of high quality, natural-fibre yarns.

How did you begin your career in craft?

I began knitting while I was back packing in New Zealand after finishing my degree.  I was used to being “on the go” between work and study, so I wanted to fill the down time of travel with something productive.  I had no idea back then that my new hobby would change my life so completely.  The plan had been to come back home and resume studying law in one form or another!

Instead I convinced my Mum to partner with me in opening “This is Knit” and we’ve never looked back.

Describe the This Is Knit brand and aesthetic.

We supply quality yarns and tools for the enthusiast fibre crafter. Our service is friendly, open and helpful, with a strong focus on community.  We provide a tempting array of colourful yarns and plentiful project suggestions, all in a beautiful and inspiring setting.

What are your top tips for someone interested in getting more creative?

If you’re going to take up knitting or crochet for the first time then I would definitely suggest choosing a quality yarn that “speaks” to you.  Find a colour that you love or a texture that you just can’t put down.  You’re far more likely to finish that first project if you are enjoying having the materials in your hands.

You can always pick up a spare piece of yarn to practice new techniques on, but then go back to your “treat” yarn and make something small and simple. When a beautiful wool is used your project will shine (without the need for any complicated stitch patterns).

As for learning new techniques, we stock lots of beginner guides in the shop and we also offer knitting and crochet classes in the evenings and on weekends. There are also a huge number of online resources from You Tube videos and photo tutorials, to discussion groups and paid online courses.

With the colder months approaching, what is the most popular product your customers are making?

Around this time of year there’s a particular design that gets a lot of attention! It’s called the “Herriot Hat” and it’s knit in a chunky yarn made from 100% Baby Alpaca.  We have a sample of the finished hat in the shop and it’s topped with a fake fur bobble.  It’s fast to knit and fun to wear, with the bonus of being kitten-soft and toasty-warm.

We also expect the patterns from the latest Laine magazine to get a lot of attention in the coming months. Laine is a Nordic Knitting and Lifestyle Magazine with stunning photography, refined knitwear designs and long format articles.  It has proven very popular with our customers this year.

What would you most like to knit that you haven’t so far?

I have so many designs in my “queue” so that’s a tough one to answer!

I’d really love to make a giant cabled throw to snuggle under all winter. It’s something I’ve been dreaming about for years but I haven’t quite gotten around to making a reality yet.

On the other end of the scale there’s is a pattern called “Tsumuzikaze”, pictured to the right, which uses a very lightweight yarn blended from Merino Wool, Alpaca, Silk and Linen.  It’s a very elegant layering piece with lace detail on the sleeves and an asymmetric hem.  We have a finished version of it on one of our shop mannequins, but it has to stay there because it gets so much attention!

Who are people that inspire you in the creative world?

We have been fortunate to host some very talented designers in our shop for workshops and events in the past few years.  I’m always blown away by the creative mind of “Woolly Wormhead”. She is constantly innovating and adapting existing knitting techniques to create hat patterns that are both structural and beautiful. I’m always learning something new from her!

What attracted you to base your business in Powerscourt Shopping Centre?

The Centre is a lovely oasis of calm in the midst of the City Centre bustle.  The building itself is beautiful and so many of the tenants are design-led, owner-operated businesses.  The fact that it is based in the “Creative Quarter” makes it an ideal fit for This is Knit too!

What does the future hold for This Is Knit?

We’ve been working away on organising an entire Yarn Festival for May 2018!  “Woollinn” (www.woollinn.com) will feature an exciting array of workshops from many special guest tutors, and a fabulous marketplace of top-quality yarns, fibres and tools for knitters and crocheters.

It’s an exciting new venture and we’re looking forward to welcoming fibre enthusiasts from all over the world to Dublin for the event.

This Is Knit can be found on the first floor at Powerscourt Centre and online at www.thisisknit.ie

03 10 2017

Behind the Brands

With John Adams of Article

As the hub of the creative quarter, Powerscourt Centre is full of the most successful Irish designers and shops and we are thrilled to gain an insight behind some of these wonderful brands.

Next in the series, is John Adams, owner of Article, a unique homewares shopping experience that stocks many of Ireland’s leading contemporary designers.

How did you begin your career in design?  

Really by accident. After I graduated, I took what I thought would be a temporary sales job in David Mellor where we sold his Cutlery and really top-quality Kitchen and Tableware. 5 years later I was managing the branch in Sloane Square in London and then I later moved to Habitat. Though I have no formal design training at all, I’m a retailer with a good eye (hopefully!) first and foremost.

Describe the Article brand and aesthetic.

We focus on ‘items for the home’ and cover tableware, decorative accessories and stationery. I like to keep the selection quite tight and avoid drifting into fashion and personal accessories, but I also constantly update the selection with new things that catch my eye. Aesthetically our look is contemporary and my starting point is, ‘would I have it in my own home’ and then I decide from there if it fits with what we have already.

What trends do you see taking off for homewares in Autumn Winter?

I think the overall feel is very natural with lots of greens and natural wood. Brass is quite a strong look taking over from copper and silver/steel is beginning to be used again.

What one piece from your store, do you recommend people invest in?

Hard to pick one piece, but I really like the range of Kitchen accessories from Danish Brand Rig-Tig.

How do you decide which Irish designers to work with?

It’s a mix between people I’ve found on trips around the country and people who have come into the shop to show me their work. Who I choose is really about the fit and obviously how commercially viable it is.

What attracted you to base your business in Powerscourt Shopping Centre?

When I started the shop in 2010, the economy was very tough but I was able to take a small unit and establish the business before moving to our current unit at the end of 2011. The centre attracts a lovely mix of Dubliners and Tourists and it’s good to build relationships with the other shop owners and feel a sense of community.

What does the future hold for Article?

In 2018, I plan to refurbish the shop, we’ve been in this unit 6 years and it’s beginning to look a little tired though it’s a beautiful space, so we will obviously respect that whilst updating our look. Watch this space..

Article can be found on the first floor at Powerscourt Centre and online at www.articledublin.com 

15 09 2017

Behind the Brands

With Amanda Kierans of Rain + Conker from KID Store

Located in the creative quarter, Powerscourt Centre is home to some of Ireland’s most successful designers. A partnership between Amanda from Rain + Conker, and Maria of Lollipops and Daydreams, KID is a design led concept store and has a beautiful range of brands for children.

We sat down with Amanda to get to know about the brand and gain an insight into what it takes to be a successful designer.

Amanda Kierans of Rain + Conker from KID Store

How did you begin your career in kids wear?

Largely by accident! Initially I wanted to set up an online shop but unfortunately, a lot of the brands I wanted to stock would only supply established stores.  After going around in circles for a few months I re-evaluated and decided to approach things from a different part of the supply chain. I always loved design, collaborating plus there was a lack of choice out there three years ago.

Describe the Rain + Conker brand and aesthetic?

The aesthetic is modern but also fun.  One thing that was really important for me was to remain attainable- not ‘too cool for school’ if that makes sense?!  Our core designs are quite scandi, clean and minimal and generally using a soft palette of monochrome, grey and blush.  But we do mix things up and have fun. I get bored easily plus it’s important to remain commercial too as it is a saturated market.  The brand isn’t a slave to trends by any means.

While thankfully there is much more choice now, comfort will always remain central to our products and was a major motivation behind the brand.  Cartoonish patterns and pinks and blues also dominated the high street.  While they have their place we really wanted to offer something different.

Since we started our journey our range has evolved considerably but the ethos of our brand remains the same- back to basics, no gimmicks, frills or restrictive fabrics.  We place an emphasis on simple and functional shapes.  Fabrics are soft and comfortable and generally made from GOTS certified organic fabrics and our moccasins made from the high-quality leather.

Rain + Conker from KID Store

How do you feel seeing children wearing your designs?

It was initially a little surreal.  It’s a tough industry to work on so seeing our brand tagged on Instagram and other platforms is a real boost.

What was your dress style as a child?

I was born in 1980 so it was a very fun decade to be a kid!  Bodysuits, crazy leggings combinations (worn with skirts!), lots of hair clips/bobbles, high-waisted jeans….it was eclectic!  Funny seeing so many of those trends come back since…something I would never have thought would happen!  The 90s was boring in comparison- it largely revolved around ironing my hair to within an inch of its life!

How do you feel sharing a space with other like-minded business owners?

KID is a partnership between two independent kids brands.  It works really well.  It’s a huge job and definitely not something I could do on my own.  Maria from Lollipops and Daydreams keeps an eye on finances whereas I love sourcing and buying new brands and products.  We work well together and after working largely alone for over a year it’s great to have someone to bounce idea’s off.

Rain + Conker from KID Store

What attracted you to base your business in Powerscourt Shopping Centre?

The centre itself is stunning and is packed full of ‘not on the high street’ brands and stores.  There’s a refreshing emphasis on quality and good design.  While KID is no longer a collective of ten Irish brands we’ve worked hard to maintain our foundation- Irish brands still make up 75% of KID and I’d estimate approximately 40-50% of our products are also made in Ireland.  I can’t imagine another centre where we would fit in so well!

What does the future hold for Rain + Conker?

I’m just about to launch my new botanical collection which is an extended range of baby and kids clothing and basics made from the softest organic cotton.  The prints were designed by a Scottish illustrator Ingrid Petrie whose work I’ve adored for years.

Rain + Conker can be found in KID on the Top Floor of Powerscourt  Town Centre and online at www.rainandconker.comThe Collection can also be found at www.kidstoredublin.com from October.

07 09 2017

Behind the Brands

With Aoife Harrison from Design Centre

Powerscourt Centre is at the heart of Dublin’s Creative Quarter and is delighted to have some of Irelands most successful, inspirational and talented designers on hand.

Design Centre at Powerscourt Centre is a forum for both up and coming and established designers, so we sat down with designer Aoife Harrison to gain some insights into her brand and to gain some styling tips for the upcoming Longines Irish Champions weekend.

How did you begin your career in Design?

I always had an interest in Fashion although I studied Business in College! This has given me a great foundation on which to set up and grow my business.  I worked for several years in Brown Thomas working with several brands, which gave me a fantastic insight into the industry. I did a night course in Grafton Academy in Millinery and it was then when I realised that hats were for me!!

Describe the Aoife Harrison Design Brand  & aesthetic

My brand is classically elegant.  I aim to make hats that have a timeless appeal to them. Every season I will acknowledge what colours are in season but the shapes of the hats are styles that are meant to flatter the wearer and to complement an outfit as a whole.

As the Longines Irish Champions Weekend racing is approaching, what tips can you give on how to style your headpiece correctly?

The Longines Irish Champions weekend is a fantastic weekend of racing and style with some fabulous prizes from Longines, Moët & Chandon & The Dylan hotel.  Also, the Champion Hat Competition takes place on Saturday at Leopardstown Racecourse so I would definitely say that the Hat should be the focus of your outfit!! If the hat is the focus of your outfit then keep the rest of your attire simple.  It goes without saying to wear comfortable shoes as it’s a long day on your feet. With a statement hat, I would recommend keeping your hairstyle simple and off your face. An up style can look very polished and stays in place all day.

What fashion trends/styles do you foresee at the races this year?

Boater style hats have been a popular style at the races this year, which is an edgy look that I really like and it’s a bit different from the more traditional ladies day styles. Big hats are great for the races as they really have the WOW factor! Jumpsuits have been a popular alternative to dresses over the last season and this seems to be a growing trend.

What can we expect from the upcoming collection?

I have just completed my Spring Summer 2018 Collection and blush pink is a predominant colour in it. I absolutely love working with feathers so they feature throughout the collection. I have a couple of new styles which I’m very excited about!!

What does it mean to you to be available in Powerscourt Shopping Centre?

My Collection is stocked in Design Centre on the 2nd Floor of the Powerscourt Shopping Centre along with Philip Treacy so it’s an honour to see my hats on the shelves beside his creations. The Design Centre is a destination store for those looking for the best in Irish Design. It was here that I launched my career and it’s a fantastic store to be part of. The Powerscourt Townhouse Centre has a wonderful mix of stores which all complement each other and make it a unique shopping experience.

What does the future hold for Aoife Harrison Design?

The future is looking busy! I am continuing to grow the wholesale side of my business. I also offer a bespoke service where clients can get a hat made to suit their outfit. I can meet customers in my studio on Fitzwilliam Square or in Design Centre in Powerscourt Townhouse and we can create a unique hat for their outfit. I also host hatty hen parties in my studio where a group can come and learn how to make a headpiece while having a glass of bubbles and create their own unique piece for the big day. It’s a really fun activity and nobody needs any prior experience.  We already have had several bookings for 2018 so it’s shaping up to be a busy year!!

Aoife Harrison Design can be found at Design Centre, Top Floor, Powerscourt Centre or online at www.aoifeharrisondesign.ie

KID Store Dublin are having a family day on Saturday 2nd September to celebrate the launch of Lollipops & Daydreams first children’s book “What If”. In this beautifully illustrated picture book, children of all ages are encouraged to use their imaginations. The book is proudly written, illustrated and printed in Ireland.

There will be face painting and goodies in store from 1 -4 pm.

Compadrito Tango presents a very special performance at The the Powerscourt Town House Centre this weekend for the celebration of the Creative Quarter Festival taking place in the heart of Dublin city.

Tango pianist duo, Nolwenn Collet and Olivia Paloyan will take to the stage at 3pm on Sunday 26th, accompanied by traditional Argentine Tango dancing. Together they will play and dance in an authentic Buenos Aires-style, creating elegance, beauty and passion on the dance floor!

Nolween and Olivia originally from France, both share a strong passion for tango music and love to explore its influences from Brazil and Argentina.  The Compradito Tango is a unique experience that will leave the audience mesmerized.

 

Location: Powerscourt Shopping Centre

Show times: 3-4:30pm

For more information about the event, please click the links below:

www.tangofever.net 

www.facebook.com/tangofever

Powerscourt Centre is delighted to have the 15 finalist paintings for the Sightsavers Junior Painter Awards on display in Powerscourt Centre until August 5th.

The Sightsavers Junior Painter Awards was open to primary school children across Ireland and received thousands of entries from over 200 primary schools. The aim was to inspire them to express their artistic talent and develop an appreciation of the importance and value of sight.

Sightsavers believe that everyone should have the right to learn, earn and be happy.

Pop into Powerscourt Centre to view each of the 15 finalist’s paintings on display from now until August 5th.

27 07 2017

Behind The Brands

With Mary Grant

Located in the heart of Dublin’s Creative Quarter, Powerscourt Centre is bursting at the seams with creativity. Home to some of the most inspirational and talented Irish designers, we are delighted to offer you some more Behind The Brand’s insights on what it takes to be recognised in this competitive industry.

In the third and final part of our Behind the Brands series, is Mary Grant, designer and owner of Mary Grant located on the ground floor of the Powerscourt Centre. Finding inspiration in everyday life, Mary is making it her mission to design clothing that woman can feel confident and comfortable in every day.

What made you choose this career path? Was design always of interest to you?
From a very young age, I was interested in making things. Sewing was a big passion of mine; I would spend hours learning intricate constructions from a book. I never dreamt that one day I would have my own brand! I know how lucky I am, being able to go to work each day doing what I love so much.

What inspires you and your pieces?
Raising 3 children on my own has kept me close to home and I have learned to be inspired by everything around me. Anything, from early morning sunshine to customer feedback, everything that happens throughout the day is a source of inspiration.

What attracted you to base your business in Powerscourt Shopping Centre?
I started out in the Design Centre 24 years ago. I have always loved Powerscourt Centre for its individuality and quirky independent businesses. When we decided to open our own brand store in Dublin, it was always going to be my first choice.

What do you think makes your pieces so unique and sought after?
Customers love wearability and timelessness and those are at the centre of everything we do. Occasionally we will do something just for a photoshoot; a special piece that will live in our archives, and come out for a little bit of playtime. But for the most part, we always consider women’s bodyshapes and design to flatter them and make them feel comfortable but stylish every day. We are not just for an occasion. We believe that how women feel everyday isalways more important and that is what we look after.

What is your favourite piece instore at the moment?

That would have to be the cashmere wraps. They have literally just landed instore & online and will most likely be sold out by the end of the week! It is the perfect piece to carry through from season to season.

What does the future hold for Mary Grant?
Well that is a surprise… We have lots of things in the pipeline, so watch this space!

 

 

You can find Mary Grant on the ground floor of the Powerscourt Centre or shop online at www.marygrant.com

24 07 2017

Behind The Brands

With Margaret O’Rourke, MoMuse

As Powerscourt Centre is a hub of creativity with some of Ireland’s most inspirational and talented designers, we are delighted to offer you some more behind the brand insights on what it takes to be recognised in this competitive industry.

In the second of our series Behind the Brands, is Margaret O’Rourke, designer and owner of MoMuse, located on the ground floor of the Powerscourt Centre. Recently named as one of the Top Five places to shop in Dublin by the iconic New York Times earlier this month, this unique Irish designer is making her mark on the creative world.

What made you choose this career path? Was designing always of interest to you?
Yes, I was always creative as was my Dad, who was a brilliant Carpenter. My journey began by buying some stones and putting them together and creating small pieces for friends and family. It really developed from there and then travelling across Europe to trade shows, that really inspired me.

What inspires you and your pieces?
Travel and visiting different cities as well as people watching; it is so inspiring. I have always liked simple and classic style. I believe less is more, classic fine jewellery will never outdate. It is an investment piece that you will have for years.

What attracted you to base your business in Powerscourt Shopping Centre?
I started in Powerscourt Centre when the Loft Design Market was first set up by the amazing Aisling Farniella and I have never left, it has been my home for many years and I love it!

What do you think makes your pieces so unique and sought after?
I love to work with colours especially in my gold-filled collection; these pieces are very affordable and good quality. My fine jewellery are timeless pieces in 9kt Gold, as well as my fine gold stacking rings all made here. For me, I listen to my customer and I design simple classic pieces they will always have. I love to see my customers continuously wearing my pieces, isn’t that what it is all about!

What is your favourite piece in store at the moment?I have now started working with some new gems and more diamonds. I am currently working on a new ring collection. I am proud to say they are all made here in Dublin and all beautifully laser hallmarked in Dublin Castle. All will be revealed in September!

What does the future hold for MoMuse?
Earlier this month (July 2017), I received the best news any designer could ever wish for! I got voted one of the ‘Top Five Places to Shop in Dublin’ by the NEW YORK TIMES! It has been an amazing and exciting week. So from this who knows, but I feel very excited for the future and what it holds for MoMuse.

You can find MoMuse on the ground floor of the Powerscourt Centre or shop the collection online at www.momuse.ie


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