A textile lover in Ireland

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

I recently took a trip to Ireland with my husband and it was obvious I was in the right place once we landed in Dublin and saw a sheep pasture outside of the airplane window.  The trip was a wool-lover’s dream! We drove through a lot of the country, hopping from city to city, and the drives were so peaceful with the sheep-dotted hills, stone walls, and farms filling the countryside. However, this feeling of peace and serenity would come and go as we found ourselves on the slimmest of roads holding on for dear life as cars flew past us.   

In addition to pulling the car over whenever I thought a scene was photo-worthy, Matt also stopped into every sweater shop we saw and patiently watched me touch each sweater in there... and there were plenty! The sweater shops were FULL of Irish knits and woven pieces that are *gasp* actually still made in Ireland – most by machine. The patterns and designs everywhere were incredible. I ended up bringing home a gorgeous woven throw. Just a quick squeeze of the fabric brings a smile to my face.

On the third day of our trip, we wound up in Limerick at the Hunt Museum. As we wove our way through the museum, inspecting artifacts, jewels, and art from the Hunt Family collection, we happened upon a room where two lovely curators were setting up an exhibit on Sybil Connolly, an Irish couture fashion designer from the mid-20th century.  The curators had their gloves on and were nice enough to talk to me and let me watch them unwrap the garments. I got to take some photos, learn a bit about the designer, and see the fabrics and designs up-close. It felt like a personal tour and was one of the highlights of the trip for me.   













The cream dress on the left has crocheted Irish ​lace flowers appliqued onto it. The pink dress has a lace overlay made by a particular group of Irish Nuns. Special permission needed to be granted to Connolly to dye it pink, as the lace is not supposed to be altered from its original white.



The garments are remarkable and unique and were probably even more so in their time. I left the museum feeling inspired to sew, create, and design. I hope you’ll find some inspiration, too!  


Amazing dresses juicythings

Amazing dresses

keep it up

keep it up

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