Over 30 years ago local craft worker, Kathleen Gardiner, saw a niche in the market for handmade gifts and set about meeting that need by creating beautiful crafts focused primarily on Christmas – her favourite time of the year.
Trained years earlier by her mother, the renowned seamstress Annie Foley, Kathleen began creating everything from Christmas cushions and decorative wall hangings, to personalised wreaths, beautiful nests and dolls.
She soon became a regular vendor in local pop-up shops and Christmas fairs and markets. Kathleen also exhibited in the Bank of Ireland in Ballina for four years and as far away as Kilkenny.
An exhibition of Kathleen’s crafts, called “Enchanted Cerations” is currently on show until December 21 in the exhibition space on the first floor of Ballina Library on Pearse St and is well worth a visit for some last-minute Christmas decorating or gift-buying inspiration.
The exhibition also features the work of Kathleen’s daughter, Gabrielle Gardiner, who crochets unique and beautiful hats, scarves, door stoppers and comical creatures of all descriptions as well as Kathleen’s son-in-law, Cormac Forkan, who recently featured on the furniture restoration slot on RTE’s Late Late Show where he wowed the viewers with the restoration of a 1920s chiffonier.
All of the items on show have been created in a space of joy, honour and respect for age-old traditions.
Don’t miss the opportunity to view this uplifting display before it concludes on December 21 next.