South Dublin mother’s community-supporting business to feature at Gifted

Gifted Sahara.ie Barikisu Ali Telfer

A South Dublin mother who is supporting the women she grew up with will be in the national spotlight at Gifted – The Contemporary Craft and Design Fair – in the RDS from December 1-5.

Barikisu Ali Telfer, who lives in Dun Laoghaire, founded Sahara.ie to sell woven interior pieces such as architectural baskets, Moses baskets and pet beds, made by her friends and family in Ghana.

“Weaving is a skill we all learned in school, and it is a craft that empowers the community I grew up in to support themselves,” said Kisu.

“Sometimes I meet resistance from other buyers in Ghana because I buy my community’s work for a larger price than they would usually expect to receive.

“I truly believe in paying people fairly for their time and labour and on top of this, I invest much of our profit directly back to artisans and community development projects.

“During the Covid-19 outbreak, we supplied the community with sanitary kits including hand sanitiser and face masks, as well as ensuring the children had school supplies.

“There has been great feedback from the community in Dun Laoghaire – people who have been to Africa often feel as though they are back there in the shop, and people often comment on the vibrancy that we bring to the street.”

Gifted is the ultimate destination for anyone interested in craft, design, unique independent brands and artisan food producers and will attract an expected 35,000 visitors over five days.

More than 500 designers, makers and artisan food producers will be featured at Ireland’s largest Christmas gift shopping event which will provide a crucial boost to the sector after the pandemic forced its cancellation last year.

Over €5 million will be spent at the Fair on contemporary Irish jewellery, fashion, accessories, ceramics, interiors, art, photography and children’s gifts.

“The Fair is a huge boost to the independent creative sector, it is vital to the industry as a whole and it is estimated that it generates enough business to keep most of the exhibitors busy for at least four months of the year,” said organiser, Patrick O’Sullivan.

“At the onset of lockdown last year, we immediately moved to supporting our exhibitors through the giftedfromireland.com site – and that has been a very successful sales outlet for them.

“However, so many of our exhibitors are overjoyed at news of the return of Gifted because they have missed the human interaction of the selling process.”

Gifted also hosts the spectacular Christmas Food Emporium with over 100 artisan food producers, where you can meet the experts who can help you source the tastiest festive fare.

Gifted, The Contemporary Craft and Design Fair, takes place at the RDS Main Hall in Dublin’s Ballsbridge from December 1-5. Full details and booking at www.giftedfair.ie. Special 10% discount on all purchases on December 1.

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of www.newsgroup.ie with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at info@newsgroup.ie.

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