Award Winners Announced at Showcase 2019

Posted 21.01.19

Annual awards programme recognises excellence at Showcase – Ireland’s Creative Expo®

Tristan Donaghy of Studio Donegal pictured with Karen Hennessy, CEO of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland. Studio Donegal was the Winner of Overall Best Product Award and the Showcase Best Product - Fashion Award for its Handwoven Tweed Coat.

Winner of Overall Best Product Award – Studio Donegal

Best Product Category Winners:

  • Showcase Best Product – FASHION: Studio Donegal
  • Showcase Best Product – HOME: Mourne Textiles
  • Showcase Best Product – GIFT: Sam Agus Nessa
  • Showcase Best Product – JEWELLERY: Emer Roberts Design

Other Showcase Award Winners:

  • The Design & Crafts Council of Ireland Design Ireland Award – Criostal na Rinne
  • The Design & Crafts Council of Ireland Innovation and Craftsmanship Award – Colin Harris Furniture Design
  • Local Enterprise Showcase Award – Coolree Design

Winners of the annual Showcase Awards were announced at Showcase – Ireland’s Creative Expo, which takes place at the RDS in Dublin until Wednesday, 23rd January. Showcase 2019 was officially opened on Sunday, 20th January by Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys, T.D. and awards were presented by Karen Hennessy, Chief Executive of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland. Now in its 43rd year, Showcase is one of Ireland’s most important international trade fairs and this year is welcoming buyers from 2,580 retail businesses from 26 countries worldwide, including Ireland, the UK, USA, Mainland Europe and the Far East.

Trade buyers attend Showcase to source new and exciting products designed and made in Ireland, many of which are unique to the show. Over 400 designers, manufacturers and craftspeople, including 60 companies exhibiting at Showcase for the first time, are unveiling their new season collections at this year’s fair across the product categories of fashion, jewellery and home & giftware.

Karen Hennessy, Chief Executive of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland, said: “We are thrilled to see such a busy and productive atmosphere at the RDS as hundreds of designers and makers from across Ireland network with retail buyers from all over the world during this four-day trade fair. The continued growth and popularity of Showcase signifies the positive appeal of high-quality Irish designed and crafted products worldwide and the desire from buyers to discover and access more of what we have to offer. Our yearly Showcase awards programme encourages makers to keep innovating and developing, and I’m delighted to say that once again we have a wide range of outstanding Irish products to choose from. I offer my sincere congratulations to all this year’s award recipients, runners-up and those who were highly commended.”

The Overall Winner of the Showcase Best Product Award was Studio Donegal for its Handwoven Tweed Coat. Studio Donegal is a woollen mill in the heart of Donegal maintaining the true artisan traditions of handweaving, spinning and garment making. Everything with the Studio Donegal label has been handwoven and made in its mill in Kilcar.

Best New Product Category Winners:

JEWELLERY: The Showcase Best Product Award in the jewellery category went to Emer Roberts Design for her Zipper Link Ring. Emer Roberts Design is an award-winning Dublin-based artist studio which creates edgy, elegant and architectural designs that reflect a streamlined, classic style while the divergent ‘Wearable Biology’ fine art jewellery independently expresses innovation and artistic imagination. Highly commended in this category were Gallardo & Blaine Designs for its Earrings and Loinnir Jewellery for its Torc Pendant, both Dublin-based jewellers.

FASHION: The Showcase Best Product Award in the fashion category was Studio Donegal for its Handwoven Tweed Coat. Highly commended in this category were Dublin-based Irelands Eye Knitwear for its Aran Sweater and Lou Brennan for her Silk Scarf. Lou Brennan is based in Ballina, Co. Mayo.

HOME: This year’s Showcase Best Product Award in the home category went to Mourne Textiles from Newry, Co. Down for its Woven Wall Hanging. Mourne Textiles is a family business started in the 1940s at the foot of the beautiful Mourne mountains by the Norwegian design pioneer Gerd Hay-Edie. Highly commended were Colin Harris Furniture Design based in Newcastle, Co. Dublin for his Napkins Rings and McNutt of Donegal (based in Downings) for its Baby Blanket.

GIFT: The Showcase Best Product Award in the gift category went to Sam Agus Nessa, from Athy, Co. Kildare, for their Baby Mobile. Inspired by the native hardwoods and local materials of Ireland, Sam Agus Nessa create quirky and practical products for the home. Highly commended were Annabel Langrish, based in Ahakista, West Cork, for her Mug & Coaster Gift Set and Danu Ceramics, based in Dublin, for its Ceramic Incense Holder.

Other Category Winners:

DESIGN IRELAND: The winner of the Design Ireland Award was Criostal na Rinne for its Whiskey Tumblers. Criostal na Rinne is a craft maker of hand-cut crystal, based in the Waterford Gaeltacht of An Rinn. Eamonn Terry started his career in Waterford Crystal where he rose to the level of Master Craftsman Glasscutter. Highly commended were McKernan from Tuamgraney, Co. Clare for its Formby Scarf and Dublin-based candle company Rathbornes 1488 for its Dublin Dusk Candle.

INNNOVATION AND CRAFTSMANSHIP AWARD: The Design & Crafts Council of Ireland’s Innovation and Craftsmanship Award, which promotes innovative and creative development in craft, was Colin Harris Furniture Design. Based in his rural studio in Newcastle, Co. Dublin, Colin works with wild Irish hardwoods to create timeless pieces that tell a story of local, wild simplicity. For Colin, the process of creating furniture for both private and corporate clients is about making connections, with the client’s story, the material and the sculptural elements of the piece itself.

LOCAL ENTERPRISE SHOWCASE: The Local Enterprise Offices selected Coolree Design from Kildare for its Wooden Platter for the Local Enterprise Showcase Award. Design is at the heart of this company, with each piece focused on simplicity and beauty. It uses a combination of both modern and traditional techniques to manufacture high-end furniture and gifts for the commercial and residential markets. Highly commended were Berina Kelly Jewellery for her Neckpiece (she is based in Salthill, Galway) and Circle Vivendi Textiles for its Printed Cotton Napkins, based in Dublin.

Showcase 2019 runs until Wednesday 23rd January and is for trade attendance only. For further information, please visit


For further press information, please contact:

Sarah Geraghty,

01 476 2000

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.

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.

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