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Winter clothes for kids, the time is coming

winter clothes for kids

Winter clothes for kids needed,

Brrrrr it is getting cold out there. This time last week, I saw some kids going for a dip in the sea. But today was the first real wintery day, and it is definitely  time for winter clothes for kids.

                                        See moreHooded Childrens Jacket

Of course I am freezing too, and voila my big fleecy jumper came out. The fire got an extra log and it is nice and cozy in the house now.

Time we got some serious hygge going. Are you wondering what I am talking about? It’s the Danish word for cozying up for the winter, or better cozying up full stop.

unique custom fleece blanketThe Danes have made it into an art form and it involves;  cosy blankets, nice food, candles, hot drinks, time spent with the ones you love and feel relaxed with.

It’s about simplicity, friendship, simple fun.

And the Danes are, according to statistics, some of  the happiest people in the world.Womens Fleece Sweater

Of course you can create hygge for yourself at home, a nice fire, a soft blanket, a cosy jumper, a lovely cuppa, a good book, nice music and the world is pretty ok, don’t you think?

Create a nest for yourself, on your own or with the ones you love, and just relax. Your favourite food, your favourite socks, your favourite scent, take out some board games, turn off the telly, switch off the phone.

Isn’t that what winter is about?  A time to slow down a bit, sleep a little more or maybe sleep better.

Ladies fleece jacket'Bolero'If you want to know more about hygge here is a link to an Irish Times review of ‘The little book of Hygge’ 

I was given it last winter, and have just rediscovered it. A cosy attitude to winter, let the fires blaze and the kettle always be hot.

Take care       Sabine             check out our shop

Housewarming gift, Fleece blanket

Warm,cosy clothing, any clothing our values

warm,cosy clothing

Warm,cosy clothing, any clothing, what are our values today?

During the week I ran a facebook ads campaign and that was a very interesting exercise. It was nice to see the interest in my warm,cosy clothing, I was quite chuffed actually.

                                       Go to shop

But one point came up that made me think, and inspired this blog post.Cape Sweater

The point of price, there was one comment that my clothing was expensive.

The question is how do we value clothing? What is the ‘right’ value for clothing? Is there a right value for clothing?

In my niche, fleece clothing, there are a lot of cheap fleeces around. Those are the ‘classic’ design, Zip, pockets, that sort of thing. The fabric often isn’t of the best quality, and they are sewn in cheap labour economies, with often dubious working conditions. There may be toxic dyes and other chemicals in the fabrics, there may not, but there are no controls.

This scenario applies to all cheap clothing, not just fleeces. The big ‘value’ chains are just interested in price. The consumer has little expectations buying from the ‘value’ stores, you know it was cheap. It may not wash well, and will be thrown out in a few weeks or months.

In these days of enormous waste and pollution , can we really afford this attitude anymore?

What are we leaving our children? A mountain of rubbish?

Boys Dungaree and Jacket setI think we need to examine this question again and again, in every aspect of our life.

As for buying clothing, were the old ways of buying quality clothing that lasts not better?

Wear it for a while, put it away for a while, rediscover it. Or gift it to somebody that loves it.

What are you paying for in more expensive clothing?

I can only speak for myself and some businesses I know. First of all a better quality fabric, ethically produced and toxin free, in my case sewn in Ireland, for a decent wage.Unique Baby Gift

A lot of other conscientious companies are now producing in Europe, since there is very little Irish Clothing Industry.

What you get? You get a garment that will give you joy for a long time and wash well time after time. Clothing that won’t fall apart after a few months and will last.

You won’t have contributed to the waste mountain, because the garment you bought will go on and on.

Anything wrong with that?????

Think about it, every little change helps.   All the best Sabine

    Mens Fleece Hoodie                                  Go to shop

                       

 

 

 

 

 

Cosy fleece sweater for the autumn

Cosy fleece Sweater

Cosy fleece sweater needed

I hear the wind howl, and my cosy fleece sweater keeps me nice and warm. Autumn has come, but this year I don’t like the change of season.       Shop Now

Ladies Sweater PoloWe really had no summer here on Achill Island, it just rained a lot and there was no heat to speak of. The land is so wet, it can’t take anymore water. We didn’t have much growth this summer, my summer flowers are only having a nice showing now.

Is this the result of climate change, and the way future summers will be? Will it always be so cold? The statistics say,  that the temperatures are rising, but this summer there were only very few days that I was comfortable without my cosy fleece  sweater. 

It seems here along the Wild Atlantic Way, I will be in my Fleeces all year round. A quality fleece jacket always a good investment.Womens Fleece Hoodie

Since the scientists and thinkers have as of yet not come up with a definite pattern, we will just have to wait and see what the future brings.

I live here on Achill Island for 30 years now  and I can say the weather has changed. There has always been rain and bad weather, a bad year here and there, but when was the last good summer?

We had a beautiful winter last year, to make up for the  no show summer.  I can’t remember a nice spring and more than a couple of weeks of summer weather in a while.Big Sweater

Yes, there are definitely changes afoot. I suppose we just have to let go of the idea of seasons, like they used to be, and avail of the sun when it is out. Take a break at the drop of a hat? Weather nice next week, let’s go ?  Restructure our lives to avail of the good days?   A crazy thought? or go and get a few weeks of guaranteed sunshine and heat somewhere?

Musings on a windy evening,  have a great week       Sabine                  Shop Now

 

Fleece Blanket, Cosy Blankets Night

 

A night for a Fleece Blanket

Wrapped up in my Fleece Blanket, I am sitting here writing this Blog Post. It is a howler of a night.  We have had gale force winds all day and all evening, with very heavy rain.  Fleece Blankets

The first gale in a while, just to remind us who is boss.    No, this is nothing like the Hurricane Irma.   My sympathy is with the people living in its path.  But it is a reminder non the less to us how strong nature is. Housewarming gift, Fleece blanket

Living here on Achill Island, living with the power of the sea and wind, it always amazes me how anybody can doubt the power of nature.

I feel no bigger than a grain of sand on the beach, a tiny spec, of no importance.

Cosy Blankets

Cosy blankets and tea are the order of the night, comfort and warmth. It is hard to keep the heat in when the wind howls. There is something nice about wrapping yourself into a blanket after the summer. It is definitely autumn, don’t want to call it winter.

It’s not been much of a summer, too much rain, the ground is sodden. I certainly wore my fleeces a lot, not many days for summer dresses. Living in Ireland, what a good investment a quality fleece is, you use it all year round.  

Big Sweater                    Fleece Shop

It has been a busy summer, and where as many of you are nicely refreshed after your holidays, the tiredness is hitting me.  A few quieter weeks will be much appreciated before the next rush. 

Will we have a nice winter, like we had last year?  That is the million dollar question. I hope for a bit more sunshine, it brightens up the mood. We will see, every day another adventure. 

In my house, a bad day means candles, the stove lit, nice food, tea, blankets, something to warm the soul. A good day means get outside as much as possible, catch some rays.      

Fleece Patchwork Blanket

On that note I say good night, I wish you lots of sunshine, and if not some warm blankets and tea.

                        all the very best    have a good week Sabine       Baby Blankets

 

    Fleece Baby BlanketHandmade Fleece Blanket

Blackfield Clothing Studio on overdrive

Blackfield Clothing Studio

 

Blackfield Clothing Studio, busy times,

Running a small business is just crazy at times. We are having one of those mad years. Everything is coming together.

First we had to move shop unexpected. Our new base on Achill is ‘Lakefield Gallery‘ Slievemore Road, Keel.  (you can find directions if you google Blackfield Clothing Studio).Lakefield Gallery

And I always underestimate how much there is involved in a move. It is not just the physical move, no it is also all the changes on social media, tripadvisor and all that. Nowadays there is so much more to running a small business.

It is challenging, who can afford a social media person?

Then of course I had scheduled my major website revamp, due to all the problems we had before christmas 2016.

And these things never run smoothly. Always there are unexpected hiccups.

I am not complaining, business has been good, wholesale and retail, as a result, production has been mental too.

We love it busy, but sometimes I wish not everything would happen at the same time. Isn’t it strange how the universe seems to throw these things at you?  All in one go.

 Irish Fleece Clothing still popular

Irish Fleece Clothing Kids Hoodie HorseI can report with pride that our brand of Irish Fleece Clothing  is by no means dead. On the contrary, fleece is still the cosiest fabric around. And so user friendly, easy to wash, easy to dry and all that. shop now                 Irish Fleece Clothing short cape

All polyester fabrics have an environmental impact, and I have written about that here. But thanks to those smart boys in Berlin, we can do something about it. Check out the blog post.

So yes, it is mad busy, and I often don’t know what to do first, but all will get done. At the moment we sew 24/7, well nearly.

Long fleece CardiganThe new items in the collection are popular, much to my satisfaction. It has been an immensely productive if mad first 6 months of 2017. Website done, Shop moved, New pieces designed, on top of daily stuff….. all good.Ladies Sweater Polo

A bit tired at times, but nothing a few night’s sleep can’t fix. On that note, I hope your year so far has been good, and that you are heading to or coming from a well earned holiday.

All the very best Sabine        Shop Now


Custom baby blanket with name

Special baby presents

blackfield clothing studio

Night Sewing

 

 

 

 

Holiday time for you?

Holiday Time

Holiday Time – Busy Time

The months of July and August are holiday time for a lot of people. Shop Now

On Achill Island, being a tourist resort, holiday time is a crazy busy time for a lot of us. We have very much 2 different lives in the year.

There is the calm of winter, where we focus on our local community, and then there is summertime, with lots of new people to meet.

We often say to each other,’See you in September’, everybody knows there is no space, no time.

Our children come home, but we don’t see much of them, because they are out at work.

Often visitors forget we are not on holidays, we have schedules, trying to keep everybody happy.

And yes,  we would love to chat and enjoy the view with our guests, it often is just not possible. Too many things to do, too many places to be.

We cross paths with many an interesting person, but mostly we don’t even get to really meet them.

Peak Season                

Where ever you are travelling to this summer, keep in mind that whoever is serving you and making your holiday special, has a very different life.  Think of your busiest time of the year, and yes that is us in peak season.

I often feel that this point gets forgotten. Spare a thought for those that are looking after you and are doing their best. They could be tired, full to capacity with so many different vibes coming towards them.

Everybody tries their best, but the people looking after you are just that, people. Good days, bad days, children crying, no sleep, long shift, row with the boyfriend/girlfriend  and all that,    life.

Wherever you go in the world in peak season, it will be the same.

So please spare a thought for those that are trying to make your holiday special.

See you on Achill Island    Sabine

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Achill Island

 

 

Fleece Clothing and the Environment

Fleece Clothing and the Environment

Fleece Clothing and the Environment

I have become acutely aware of the damage that washing Fleece Clothing and all synthetic clothing does to the environment about 8 month ago.

Since then I have been watching developments worldwide, and I am delighted to have found an answer.

All synthetic clothing, Fleece Clothing included, shed microfibres in the wash. These microfibres are not, or only over a long period of time, biodegradable.

They are absorbed by fish and plants, and this way make their way into our food chain. It is a very alarming state of affairs that needs to be addressed now.

This is a problem that is happening now, and we can do something about it.Mens Fleeces

The solution

Two guys, in Berlin Germany, saw the problem, and felt the urgency to act for a healthier environment.

Alexander Nolte and Oliver Spies researched and brainstormed the situation and came up with the idea of the ‘Guppy Friend’.

A bag that you put your washing into, before you put it into the washing machine. This bag will filter out the micro fibres.

After the wash you pick the fibres out of the bag and dispose of them in a responsible manner. Check with your local recycling policies.

The development of the bag was partly crowdfunded and partly funded by Patagonia.  The whole project is Non Profit, it is for the well being of the planet. You can now order the Guppy Friend here, to do your bit to protect the sea from polyester micro fibres.

Fleece clothing, a responsible approach Shop now

Warm Beret Hat and wristwarmersWhen I read about the negative effect of fleece clothing on the environment, I felt devastated.

A lot of my fleeces are used by children and babies, and as a mother, the thought of damaging their present and future environment was not a pleasant one.

But it is not just for them, it is for all of us. These micro fibres are now getting  into our food chain. Neither Washing machine manufactures nor sewerage plant designers seem to have come up with a proper filtration method.

My waste water goes, via a sewerage treatment plant at the end of the village, into the sea. As far as I am aware, microfibres are not caught in the filters.

All this is relatively new, and I know it takes time to develop new filtration systems. I hope that all responsible washing machine companies will take these findings into consideration in their development programs.

In addition, I hope that sewerage plants will update their filtration.

A healthy Environment is up to us

It is up to us, that enjoy the comfort and convenience of  fleece clothing, to take care of the side effects. Therefore the ‘Guppy Friend’ is the immediate solution.

Due to overwhelming demand of the initial production run, the distribution is not great as of yet. I have been in touch with the guys, and they will let me know when we can buy ‘Guppy Friends’ online. A link to purchase is there but not working yet.   Please remember this is a not for profit project, it is a big project, it will take a little time.

In the meantime please wash your synthetic clothing, fleeces included, in a 30 degree wash, some machines call it eco wash. I recommend that on my wash care labels.

An extensive research program earlier this year by Patagonia has shown that the lower temperature wash causes less shedding. Modern washing powders are designed to work well in low temperature washes.

Our Planet        

It is our planet, and therefore we have to take care of it in our daily lives.  We can not trust the governments and the big corporations, their goal unfortunately a lot of the time is money or power at all costs.

Most of them don’t care, it baffles me since their lives and children are just as affected by environmental destruction as ours.

Or maybe they think they will clear off to Mars or something to create another mess? I really don’t get the thinking.

Maybe it is the same thinking irresponsible farmers had/have, they inject the animals for sale with all sorts of stuff, and keep the animals for their own consumption apart?

It’s hard to do on our ever shrinking the planet isn’t it?

Our choices

We will have to continue/start from the bottom up, maybe we can teach them. We can change a lot  by the choices we make as consumers. What brands we buy, whether we buy quality that lasts and won’t land on landfill, or the opposite. Whether we recycle or not, demand less packaging or not etc, etc.

If you think about it, if we don’t buy low quality foods, clothes etc, they won’t make them, since there is no demand, they make no money.  Very simple.

Our health and wellbeing is symbiotic with the health and well being of the planet.

Our health and happiness as well as that of future generation depends our choices.

A very empowering thought don’t you think?    We can make a difference!

 

On that note I will sign off for today, I will keep you updated on all matters ‘Guppy Friend’.

Chose wisely for your health and happiness, have a nice summer holiday  Shop now

All the very best       Sabine

Fleece Clothing and the environment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crazy Weather/ Achill Island

Crazy weather Achill Island What crazy weather on Achill Island this week

It’s been a Roller coaster  here on Achill Island, with  crazy weather.

The week started off cold enough 10-12 degrees celsius, overcast, grey, then midweek it went in the morning to 18-20 and then up to a hot day on Thursday of 24 degrees celsius to come down again today to 12 degrees.

Our poor bodies don’t know what is happening.  Its been a jacket or jumper, summer dress, fleece jumper scenario.

And we thought we were finished with fleece jumpers and jackets for a while. Maybe just use them in the evenings. Apparently not.       [maxbutton id=”2″ ]                                        girls hooded pullover

This is what I mean about crazy weather on Achill Island. It always changes a lot, living by the Atlantic makes sure of that. But this week has been extreme. Full of energy one day, sleepy and dull the next.

My animals don’t know what they are at, running around  in the sun and back to sleeping in front of the fire.

They are looking out going ‘Oh really’.

cosy womens fleece jacketWe all feel that way, had been moving the T-shirts to the front of the drawer………   I am getting really fed up of wearing jumpers and jackets, are you?

But what can we do about the weather? Nothing much, just get on with it.  Irish weather world famous for its changeability.  I see in the shops all the summer clothes are going on specials, it is just so risky to stock summer clothing with this kind of scenario.

So yep if you are buying clothing, think of what you get most use out of.  We all have to start taking responsibility for the future, and our planet. Cheap quality clothing that will end up on landfill the environment can’t afford anymore.

We need to change our thinking and invest in clothing that will last and that we get wear out of.

Here’s to a future for our kids.     [maxbutton id=”4″ ]

Crazy weather Achill Island

 

 

Travel Clothes, your favourites?

Travel Clothes

Fleeces, ideal travel clothes?

I can only look at this from my own personal perspective as a woman and a mother travelling. For me Fleeces are ideal travel clothes for myself as well as my kids.[maxbutton id=”4″ ] Ladies Fleece Cape

How I come to that? Over the years I have done my fair share of travelling in all sorts of outfits. What I like best are loose trousers. or trousers with a bit of stretch, a light t shirt or top, and a cardigan or light jacket.Ladies Fleeces

Often airports are draughty, hot one minute, cold the next. My clothing needs to be able to adjust to that. I like to be comfortable, but also like to look well, even when I am tired and in need of some comfort.

Many a different jacket I have tried, but since I discovered fleece jackets those are my favourites. Wanting to look smart and be comfortable has been the drive behind my ladies fleece clothing range. To me the fabric is just so useful especially for travelling. It is light, doesn’t crease, no bulk (unless its a big winter coat) wipe clean in a lot of cases, and washes and dries easily.

Aran fleece Multi JacketTravelling with kids

All the above factors have made it for me important to always have a fleece with me when my kids were small.

The tired chill before absolute crankiness, the chill of a rainy day, the chill after a swim, cozying up in the car.Handmade Fleece hooded jacket

All these instances were helped by a the cosy comfort of a fleece. And if they spilled something on it, mostly a wipe in the bathroom fixed the matter short term. Until I got back to the hotel, a quick wash and ready for action in the morning.

As for the baby blankets, many uses on many occasions for many people.  On the beach, in the grass, strange beds made more homely, in the car….. they are the most useful baby presents to get, without a doubt.

I hope you are looking forward to your holidays, pack light and versatile, lots of luggage is such a pain. Mix and match, and you will have something for all eventualities.

All the best Sabine   [maxbutton id=”4″ ] Personalized unique Baby Blanket    baby presents irelandFunky Childrens Fleeces

 

Designer Fleece Shop

Designer Fleece shop

Designer Fleece Shop- All year round

In the northern Hemisphere we are coming into summer, and one would think there wouldn’t be much need for you to browse in my Designer Fleece Shop.

But hey, you are still gonna need something to wrap around you,  to protect yourself from the chill on early mornings or at night.                            [maxbutton id=”2″ ]    Cape Sweater

Mens Hooded FleeceMost barbecues, certainly in Ireland, require a Fleece Jacket at some stage during the evening. Kids coming out of the sea, heat up really fast wrapped up in  a special children’s fleece Jacket.

We are all fed up of our winter wardrobe. I find it hard to figure out what I want to wear most mornings these days.

Ladies Fleece BoleroI am sure you are in the same boat. Looking forward to Tee-shirts and summer dresses. Yes, some sunshine and some heat.

On Achill Island it has been a cold April. We had been spoilt by a very sunny winter, and are well ready for more sunshine now.

On the Island we are getting organized for the summer season. A lot of people work in hospitality of some kind or another. May/ June I love lots, Pre season, we still get to enjoy some of the fine weather. Those are often beautiful months on the island, it is a good time to come to Achill.Girls Hooded Fleece Jacket

For me it is a time to sew some stock for my new Shop at Lakefield Gallery in Keel.

Fleeces and travelling

There are orders for especially our Children’s Fleeces by people going on holidays and new babies.

Childrens Hooded fleece jacketOur Children’s Fleeces are just so handy for travelling. Light, don’t crease, easy to wash, instant warmth. All you need.

A Smart Fleeces jacket for any member of the family is really handy for travelling. I don’t go anywhere without one, Airports can be chilly, tiredness needs comfort.

I make my smart fleeces because I want one myself, use them all the time.

Have a good week, I hope you had a nice bank holiday, all the very best

Sabine                           [maxbutton id=”2″ ]        Fleece Baby Blanket