Christmas Craft Fair 'alternative' to take place in Fort Dunree's Saldanha Gallery

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After the overwhelming success of last year's event, ‘In the Making’, a unique celebration of arts and craft making, is back by popular demand for a second year running.

An alternative to the traditional Christmas Craft Fair, this free event takes place from 11am-4pm on Saturday, November 18 2023 in the Saldanha Gallery, Fort Dunree, and is funded by the Arts Council of Ireland.

It promises to be an inspiring day filled with creativity – showcasing the talents of local artists and makers, and providing visitors with the opportunity to engage in hands-on experiences.

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Artlink project co-ordinator Rebecca Strain said: “We’re delighted to be hosting ‘In the Making’ again this year, which features a diverse array of artists and makers demonstrating their wonderful skills and allowing visitors to witness the magic of creative processes up close.

Ruth McCartney – SpinningRuth McCartney – Spinning
Ruth McCartney – Spinning

"People will also have the chance to try their hand at various crafts, including weaving on a loom, woodturning on a foot-powered lathe, spinning, and working with clay.

“This year’s event also promises to be bigger and better than last year, with more artists and makers participating, and live music by Alievtina Rudenko, which will add to the vibrant atmosphere, enhancing the overall experience for all.”

Artists and creative makers participating in this year’s ’In the Making’ include: Mary Crowley – Watercolour, Audrey Doherty – Millinery, Ruth McCartney – Spinning, Paul Campbell – Woodturning, Anna Stainsby – Crochet, Claire Harkin – Weaving, Grainne McMenamin – Lino Printing, Josephine Kelly – Oil Painting, Tim Stampton – Wood Block Printing & Bookmaking, Deborah Stockdale – Embroidery, Matthew Porter – Ceramics, Ros Harvey – Chalk Pastels, Hanna Pidkaliuk – Cross Stitch, Tara Eileen Welch – Stained Glass, and Mark Cullen – Animation, 3D Printing & Children’s Books.

Last year’s feedback speaks volumes

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Audrey Doherty - MillineryAudrey Doherty - Millinery
Audrey Doherty - Millinery

Artlink project co-ordinator Martha McCulloch added: “Last year’s inaugural ‘In the Making’ event received overwhelming praise from both visitors and creative makers alike. Visitors commended the wonderful exhibits, engaging atmosphere, and the opportunity to interact with artists and creative makers directly. Artists and makers, in turn, expressed their gratitude for the chance to connect with the public, share their passion, and receive valuable feedback.

“Some of the quotes from last year’s visitors and makers include: “Wonderful idea and exhibits, thank you for the yummy mulled fruit juice too!”, “Amazing exhibitors, lovely work. Brilliant show, great idea, hope it is an annual event”, and “The atmosphere was lovely and relaxed, with no pressure to sell or buy.

" People are genuinely interested, surprised, and engaged in conversation and the making process. Repeat please sometime in the future!”

Martha McCulloch concluded: “I would encourage as many people as possible to come along to this year’s ‘In the Making’ as it promises to be a really enriching experience for all, fostering a deeper appreciation for our local arts and crafts.

Claire Harkin_WeavinClaire Harkin_Weavin
Claire Harkin_Weavin

"I would also like to take this opportunity to highlight that this event simply wouldn’t be possible without the support of the Arts Council of Ireland and the dedicated artists, makers and visitors who make it such a memorable occasion!”

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For further information about ‘In the Making’ and upcoming exhibitions and events during November and December 2023, visit or or contact a member of the Artlink team on 00353 838696513.

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