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The Remarkable Origins of Ireland's Famed Limerick Lace Industry |

The Remarkable Origins of Ireland’s Famed Limerick Lace Industry

It may surprise many to learn that the Irish lace industry has roots tracing back to the early 18th century, with the craft initially brought to the Emerald Isle by Spanish settlers in Galway. Although the Dublin Society began offering premiums for lace as early as 1743, it was not until 1829 that concerted efforts were made to establish the industry on a commercial basis.

This change was due in large part to Mr Walker, who had married into a Nottingham family of lace manufacturers. Recognizing Ireland’s untapped potential, he brought 20 skilled Nottingham lace makers to Limerick to teach the craft to the local women. Their hard work and dedication paid off, giving birth to the storied Limerick lace industry, which would come to be renowned not only throughout Ireland but the world.

Today, Irish lace is highly sought after for its intricate patterns and superior craftsmanship, with Limerick lace being one of the most prized types. The success of this industry can be traced back to those pioneering women who bridged cultural divides and shared their knowledge for the betterment of their communities. The Limerick lace industry stands as a testament to the successful merging of traditions hailing from different regions and the potential for growth when the creativity and talent of hard-working individuals are nurtured and recognized.

Nottingham Evening Post – Friday 13 September 1901

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