Foggy Sunset

Foggy Sunset
Photo by Aisling Doonan

Thursday, 17 August 2017

RDS National Craft Exhibition 2017

Two weeks ago, I had the honour of being invited and included in the RDS National Crafts Competition Exhibition and Prizegiving.

Elaine Harrington, A Gathering, Bealtaine 2017

On the 1st of August, we travelled to Dublin and I will admit to being a little bag of tiny, wiggly nerves.

Aislynn Bagnall, Lir Collection
The prizegiving was at 2pm and we arrived with minutes to spare (traffic...) and I had just enough time to quickly scout the RDS Concert Hall to see where my beloved Rioga Shawl was. We had been separated for so long, I had kind of forgotten what she looked like and it was a slightly awkward and emotional reunion. Awkward because I felt silly taking photos and grinning proudly but self consciously at a glass case. I felt so *exposed*! Imagine if anyone guessed it  was *me* who had knit that delightful coral creation. I had to side step, stiff backed, to the next display case and photograph it too because it felt like the whole room was looking at me. Please tell me, somebody, anybody, that this is normal behaviour!

Pearl Reddington, Midnight Python Jumper

Anyway, you will be glad to know, that this year, I did not have toothpaste on my top or lipstick on my teeth. I was squeaky clean, with a fancy dress and make up on. I made an effort! *round of applause*

Oliver Doherty, Metamorphosis

But I digress. Once the gong hit 2pm, the quiet polite whispers stopped and people gathered for the prize giving. 

Suzie Sullivan, Mad March Hare

I think my palms got a little bit sweaty at this stage.

Ciaran McGill, Dolls

They got to the constructed textiles...emerging maker...holding breath...established maker...that's me...oh, not my name...exhale. There is a delicious relief tinged with lots of sigh, once they read someone else's name out. Still, I had made it to the exhibition and I was truly delighted with that. Now that I could relax, I looked about and took note of the pieces on display. There is a staggering amount of talent in this little country. From fibre, to ceramics, to wood, to metal to glass, there wasn't two things in the room that were the same. To see so much beautiful creativity and uniqueness in one room is humbling to say the least.

Katherine Griffith, Irish Hobby Horses, Unicorns and Dragons

I couldn't even pull a favourite out from all of them.

Vivienne Molloy, Mourning the Bees

Well perhaps I could see myself swishing about in this gorgeous Gone with the Wind creation.

Linea Stenfors, Ray

Or this jaw dropping gown.

Ginteras Malinauskas, Sycamore Vessel

While my mind was wandering, and the kids were beginning to hop from one foot to the other, as kids do when they are doing their best to stay still, the hubby looked over with a 'better luck next time' sympathetic smile.

Kate O'Kelly, Wild Blue

They had moved on to the sponsored prizes at this stage.

Emma Bourke, Ethnobotany Collection

And the winner of the Guild of Irish Lacemakers Award goes to...

Edel Traynor, Woven Motion


Jane Murtagh, Flaggy Shore Leaf 2

Hey, why is my shawl on the big screen???

Ann Fleeton, Remembering the Magdalenes

A few digs from my lovely other half's elbow brought me back to the room and I realised that I was being called to the stage!

Aisling Doonan, Rioga Shawl

Yay! So I won an award, and I didn't look a mess. I have totally got this!

And so ended a happy day.

Now I am off plotting how to up my game for next year!

Happy knitting