Relive this year’s Irish Made Awards

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The Irish Made Awards ceremony took place on Friday 12 November

Irish Made Awards

On Friday, we celebrated the Irish Made Awards 2021 with a ceremony at the Gibson Hotel. That’s right, it was in person. It was wonderful to be able to gather finalists, local businesses, sponsors, and inspirational speakers in one room. This is the fifth year of the Irish Made Awards, designed to champion Irish businesses and the importance of shopping local. At the awards, there were goodies for attendees, inspiring speeches, and smiles all around (even if they were behind masks!) In case you missed it, here’s a rundown of the day – including our winners, runners-up, and photography by Philip Doyle.

The Speakers

Editor of Irish Country Magazine, Klara Heron opened the event, welcoming all attendees and commending the finalists. She said the awards “have been a long time in the making” and that it was a “joy” to be able to hold the ceremony in situ at the Gibson Hotel.

Klara Heron

MC of the event was presenter Anna Daly. She wore a gorgeous green gúna by designer Caroline Kilkenny. Anna was on hand to keep award proceedings running, as well as giving an empowering speech about entrepreneurship.

Anna Daly

Co-founder and CEO of cosmetics company Pestle & Mortar, Sonia Deasy was the event’s keynote speaker. She gave a rousing speech about the evolution of her company from a kitchen table in Kildare to a display window in Saks Fifth Avenue in New York. She quoted the proverb “You’ll never plough a field by turning it over in your mind” as the best piece of advice she has ever been given. And she finished by urging entrepreneurs to  “just go for it.”

Sonia Deasy

 

 

The Sponsors

None of this would be possible without the support of our ten sponsors. The Design and Crafts Council of Ireland and Guaranteed Irish were headline co-sponsors of the event, as well as sponsoring the Gift and Jewellery categories. At the ceremony, CEO of Guaranteed Irish, Brid O’Connell and DCCI representative Brian McGee gave moving speeches about how important and wonderful it is to shop local. Many an attendee came out with a renewed passion for buying Irish in the run-up to Christmas.

Across the other eight categories, ICM would like to thank SuperValu, GMIT Letterfrack, Spotlight Oral Care, Magee 1866, Kildare Village, Avoca, Drinks Ireland and Codex Beauty for their support. Their dedication to Irish business is a driving force behind awards like the Irish Made Awards.

The Winners

This year’s awards were exemplary of an incredible Irish industry, with 116 finalists across ten categories. From beauty to textiles, there was an array of Irish craftsmanship on display.  The overall winner on the day was The Handmade Soap Company.

The Overall Winner receives:

  • an advertising package from Irish Country Magazine worth €6,000.
  • automatic participation in Design & Craft Council Ireland’s Design Ireland B2B programmes and supports.
  • DCCI e-commerce Bootcamp and one-to-one mentoring, valued at €5,000
  • membership of Guaranteed Irish for one year and a mentoring session, valued at €5,000.

Each winner received a plaque, as well as a stunning keepsake kindly provided by Chupi. The Irish jewellery maker gave each winner an Irish coin piece that is timeless and truly Irish in its feel and look.

The Handmade Soap Company head of Marketing, Belinda Kelly, with Editor Klara Heron

 

 

The judges described this year as a particularly difficult one to judge, with so many incredible nominees in the running. The winners across the ten categories are as follows:

Beauty: The Handmade Soap Company, runner up: Bellamianta

Furniture: John Lee Furniture, runner up: Finline Furniture

Fashion: Irelands Eye Knitwear, runner up: Caoimhe Murphy Design

Textile: Avoca, runner up: STABLE of Ireland

Food: Blackwater Honey, runner up: Ballymaloe

Drink: Craft Cocktails, runner up: Kinsale Mead Company

Gift: LAINEY K, runner up: BEO Wellness

Jewellery: Inner Island, runner up: Annemarie Reinhold

Accessories: Úna Burke Leather, runner up: AURA Éire Bridalwear

Home: Vivien O’Malley Ceramics, runner up: Rawsaol

No attendee went home empty-handed, whether they won their category or not. Each member of the audience received some Irish Made goodies. Listoke Distillery provided their 1777 gin and Poachers tonic, and Lily O’Briens provided a gorgeous collection of their top chocolates. There were plenty of copies of the November issue to go around, too.

Before the end of the event, stunning cocktails were served by the Drinks winners, Craft Cocktails. From Raspberry Negronis to Tom’s Margaritas, there were options for every taste – each one of them delicious!

Craft Cocktails serving award-winning drinks

The Irish Made Awards are a celebration of all that makes Irish business so wonderful. We already can’t wait to get started on next year’s event. Thanks to all of the attendees, the team at The Gibson hotel, and everyone who had a hand in making the ceremony happen.

For more of an insight into the ceremony and winners, as well as social photos, check out the January/February issue of Irish Country Magazine, on shelves 28 December.