Competition Piece

Competition Piece



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In Irish the meaning of the name Shay is ‘majestic’ so we found it very fitting for this design made from our finest fabric. We selected a quality linen canvas with a high thread count and a tight weave traditionally used for luxury tailoring. We wanted to create something in the collection that little bit extra special and sourced exclusive material from William Clarke & Sons, a 3 centuries old mill in Upperlands County Londonderry in Northern Ireland. They pride themselves as being the only authentic linen beetlers in the world. It involves heavy wooden rams (vertical blocks like hammers) that are lifted and then allowed to drop like an upside-down piano pounding the surface of the cloth as it slowly revolves through the apparatus. This crushes the threads closing the gaps between them producing a soft linen cloth of very fine quality almost like silk and also gives it a characteristic flatness and sheen classic of Irish linen. The process takes up to 3 weeks making a product of ultimate luxury unique to the mill. The picturesque mill is located on a narrow stretch of river cascading over stones where a waterwheel would have originally driven the engine. Back in the day deafness was almost inevitable for beetle workers due to the continuous rumble of beetle machinery in operation, which could be heard for a long way in the surrounding countryside.

Again a mixture of architecture, nature and fashion have influenced the style of our designs. Visiting William Clarke & Son’s was a treasure trove of inspiration. Before I had even stepped into the old factory the cast iron steps beneath me captured my attention - an interesting repetitive pattern of circles and diamonds. Geometrics are a running theme in our collection and we’ve made this rhombus a little more refined by adding a touch of detail around the edges, it’s also a ‘slant’ on KL Design’s ‘Fintan’. In rich tonal shades the smooth cushion cover, with polished beetled finish and sophisticated structure, contrasts delightfully with the delicate ruffles encased within the outer trimming. Layers of linen fabric have been carefully cut on the bias to leave a raw unsewn edge with only a gentle fray and minimal unraveling.  

Scattered slate roof tiles throughout the unused part of the estate inspired our choice of deep ‘slate’ grey and the earthy tone of the complimenting colour, reflecting the weathered building, works perfectly for the ‘lips’. These textured slivers of rough linen give a quirky balance to the exquisite simplicity of the overall form and have been constructed with the precise execution of piecing together a couture garment.

The details are also reminiscent of our delicious native oysters. Wild ‘ostrea edulis' grow naturally on Ireland’s tidal sea beds and the frilly shaped shells are a perfect example of beauty in nature. Long been associated with luxury and decadence Irish oysters are very highly regarded internationally as being superior. A gem in Irish cuisine culture, they were once so plentiful that they were the everyday food of the ordinary people, but now appear on the menus of some of the most famous restaurants in Europe.

On that note Irish Linen has been preferred by people of good taste for well over 4000 years. Prized for centuries as ‘the aristocrat among textiles’ it earned a reputation for being the finest linen in the world reaching all corners of the globe.

The perfect scatter cushion which can be displayed at any angle adds a touch of the unique to your interior. 


Order: Bespoke custom made-to-order