Words and Threads: A gift of poetry as we celebrate St. Brigid’s Day. We reflect on those women from our past involved in the lace industry, the memories stirred and their work treasured. This poem and collection of lace kindly donated to our archive by Heather Hall.

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Following on from the success with the local flax growing scheme in 2020, we decided to broaden participation in the project. With a grant from Pobal through Tidy Towns, Ester suggested that we put out a call both locally and nationally for volunteers to grow flax. The response was encouraging, with interest from Dublin to Mayo to Headford.

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A collaboration between Portumna Pen Pushers and Headford Lace Project. In 2019, seeds were sown for this collaboration during a series of workshops ‘Agents of Change’ facilitated by Sharon O’Grady, Arts Officer, Galway County Council.

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For August Craft Month, we decided to put together a little video presentation all about our online lace archive, which launched in 2020. Hear committee member Ella Hassett talk about the archive itself, the digitisation project and much more!

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Today, we think of all the women in our lives who have nurtured, encouraged, supported, inspired and shared their innate wisdom with us and all the women who continue to do so. The focus of this blog is about the lives of the women in our local area who were involved in the lace industry lest they be forgotten.

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Sr. Madeleine Cleverly, an Irish-American nun who spent time with the Benedictine Order at Kylemore Abbey and became part of Headford Lace Project, donated to Headford church a lace-trimmed pall based on an adaptation of the original piece of Headford Lace.

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In May 2020, HLP was granted funding from Tidy Towns to grow flax in a central location in our town. However Covid-19 hit and we had to make an alternative plan for growing the flax.

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Fuaireamar seans a bheith ar Nuacht RTÉ agus Nuacht TG4 i rith an tIdirspás (The Space Between). Tháinig foireann go hÁth Cinn chun agallamh a thaifead linn. 

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Fiona Harrington was selected to be part of an exhibition in the National Gallery of Ireland in the summer of 2020. Curated by Sinéad K. Rice, the exhibition ‘Lace, Paint Hair’ celebrated “the inexorable art of making and the makers of art in Ireland today”. Fiona’s pieces included some ‘masterful needlework’ adding fine lace to delicate eggshells and also an in-progress piece of Headford Lace made by Fiona for use as a hand fastening for her wedding.

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After our planned lace weekends were cancelled due to Covid-19, the suggestion was made to me that we should create some short bobbin lacemaking video tutorials for the HLP website.

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Headford Lace Project collaborated with Dr. Christina Henri's 'Irish Roses, Bride ship Lasses' project to honour the memory of Irish girls and young women who left Ireland for Australia and Tasmania under the Assisted Migration Scheme in the nineteenth century.

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Veronica Rowe is the grand-daughter of Florence Vere O'Brien, who established the Limerick Lace School in 1889. Veronica has recently loaned her grandmother's fine lace collection to the Hunt Museum in Limerick. Lacemakers have been flocking to the museum to view the temporary exhibition of this collection, which runs at the museum until Friday, 5th July.

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Anne attended ‘Creative Livelihoods’ in Collins Barracks, Dublin on Tuesday, June 11th. It was hosted by the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland. It focused on the value of craft in communities.

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Headford Lace Project facilitate “ Looking out to Sea” bonnet workshop on International Women’s Day, Friday March 8th 2019.

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Visit to a National Library of Ireland Exhibition, Seamus Heaney, ‘Listen now and Again’ running at the new Bank of Ireland Cultural and Heritage Centre, College Green.

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During Heritage Week I visited the Irish Workhouse Centre in Portumna, Co. Galway. I needed to learn about the history of the workhouses and get an understanding of the work being done at the Irish Workhouse Centre and the possible overlap with the Headford Lace project.

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During Heritage Week I had occasion to visit New Ross and view the Ros Tapestry. There I met Ann Fogarty and Susan Synnott who explained how this community based enterprise began in 1998.

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I was inspired to do this monogram for Joshua at his christening. When I saw him wearing the bonnet made by Ester Kiely and trimmed with Jackie Magnin’s Headford Lace, I decided I had to make something special to remember this occasion. Joshua is our ‘Headford Lace baby’ and has been part of the project even in-utero.

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Video memories of our wonderful weekend in Cork. Our thanks to Galway Rural Development for the funding, and to our friends in Cork: the Traditional Lacemakers of Ireland, West Cork Regional Museum, and Rathbarry Tidy Towns.

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Sybil is a Hunt Museum Exhibition highlighting the design career of Sybil Connolly, a Dublin-based fashion designer who was renowned internationally for creating haute couture from Irish textiles. Last Saturday, the Headford Lace Project was invited by Dr. Matthew Potter of Limerick Museum to attend a special Friends of Lace event at the exhibition.

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The Headford Lace Project began in September 2016 with the aim of researching and reviving Headford’s lacemaking heritage. Since then, we have translated these aims into a series of activities with a focus on community engagement. Our five Headford Lace Weekends have trained keen apprentices in the skills of bobbin lacemaking and bobbin making, we have participated in a number of external events, members of our committee have undertaken a multitude of training initiatives to expand our collective knowledge and skills, and we have grown our network of lace contacts internationally through our social media channels.

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I was introduced to Mountmellick Work by Veronica Stuart during the lace weekend in Headford on 22/10/2017.  As I have a keen interest in embroidery, I was fascinated by this white on white work. I visited the Mountmellick Embroidery Museum, Co. Laois on 10/11/2017.

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The beautifully-restored Sprigging School in Rathbarry once housed a lace school established by Lady Carbery in 1825. Last week, as part of our Culture Night activities, a very special piece of lace associated with that school came to visit us here in Headford.

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