Hello Spring

Spring is definitely in the air! It feels great to have the long and bright evenings and to see bursts of colour everywhere you look. Spring is a time for renewal and growth. It is also a great time to get inspired for some home colour therapy, renew and revive interior décors. Neutral and warm earthy tones such as beige, cream and browns are back on trend. They represent our sense of connection, be that with the earth, with each other or ourselves. The many neutral colours are the perfect background for any addition of richer and vibrant colours such as rose, green or yellow in say painted furniture, soft furnishing, art work or ceramics.

You can equally apply this palette to what you will wear this springtime: Bold block of electric colours motivate us for the warmer months ahead. So you can invite sunshine yellow, crisp blue or shocking pink into your wardrobe. If that seems too bold, you can always soften that vibrancy with a choice of softer pastel tones for a calming effect. Another approach suitable in Spring is to wear a sharp white top with a striking piece of jewellery.

For Spring and Summer, we have added some beautiful linen clothing to our range of handmade goods: Linen is the perfect fabric choice for the warmer months as it is breathable and comfortable to wear.  It is also a truly sustainable fibre since it is the strongest and most durable, meaning that you can enjoy your linen shirt or trousers for a long time. Independent fashion brands are creating small quantity garments that are produced in an eco-friendly way: it’s about slow living and sustainability and a world away from fast fashion.  

Think Green

As St Patrick’s Day and Irishness has been celebrated recently in Ireland and all over the world, what better time to think about green in all its tones, shades and meanings!

Green is omnipresent in our daily lives, especially in this country. Inside the home, it might be chosen as a main colour in a room and is associated with safety and harmony. Green is a colour that soothes the mind but it can also work well to create a dramatic effect. A mix of houseplants may also be used to instantly bring in variations of the colour around the house.

Green also represents growth, renewal or rebirth especially as this time of the year when nature wakes up and the shoots, flowers and buds start to appear.  If we look at renewal with the environment in mind, we can make a beneficial impact by adopting a ‘greener’ attitude. Reusing, repairing and refurbishing contribute to a more sustainable way of life. The traditional linear economy based on a ‘take-make-waste’ production model has started to be questioned.  By contrast, the circular economy focuses on the most effective use and reuse of materials and energy. That goal is primarily achieved through creating long-lasting designs, repairing and reusing items, as well as re-purposing or refurbishing things where possible rather than chucking them out! 

You can embark or continue on your own green journey by restyling or upcycling a piece of furniture that you might have at home or even pick up in a second hand shop. Using the Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, an organic decorative paint that works wonders on furniture. Check our Workshop page for details and dates. https://handmadedesign.net/chalkpaint/workshops/

Have a green christmas!


It is more important than ever to be environmentally aware this Christmas season and to chose sustainable options as much as possible.

The Christmas tree is at the centre of the decor this time of the year so opting for a real tree, grown in Ireland will benefit the planet as the carbon footprint is minimal. It also it makes your home feel pretty special with the beautiful pine scent wafting around the house. There are some exquisite Christmas decorations available handmade in glass, wood, ceramic, paper and felt. You can also source some quirky vintages ones in antique shops.

Buying locally-made gifts allows you to get some beautiful, unique and quality pieces that will be cherished and appreciated by the person receiving them. Buying handcrafted gifts is both environmentally sound and economically worthwhile.  Gift wrapping and packaging doesn’t have to cost the earth either and can be kept simple. In Handmade Design Studio, we provide  with handmade reusable fabric pouches. Kraft or recycled paper added to with some colourful ribbons is another greener alternative.

Supporting makers, artists and designers together with local independent shopks means helping to build a diverse thriving locally-based business community. Keep your town or village alive as well as the planet!