As a designer I am naturally drawn to aesthetically pleasing objects in all facets of my life. I have an appreciation of the time that goes into creating a beautiful object, and when it is functional too I get very excited! Arran Street handmade homeware is both. They refer to themselves as ‘architects in clay’ which is a genius explanation of their style of crafting.
Their designs are an admirable balance between simplicity and rustic with a nod to Irish heritage. They are hand-thrown which makes each piece unique in it’s own little way, and yet still has uniformity that clean lines and simple structure require. Each piece is stamped with a signature ‘A’, inspired by the old-Irish A on the Arran Street East street sign. The palette of earthy colours is inspired by the ,location of the studio, tucked away beside Dublin’s Victorian Fruit and Vegetable Market. Soft hues of fruit and vegetables like pink grapefruit, lemon, pomegranate, cabbage, potato, and parsnip. The care and craftsmanship of each piece is obvious to the touch. They are an incredibly tactile objects with a lovely hearty weight. You can feel the story in every textural line.
You can visit their studio and shop on Little Green Street, grab a coffee in their little coffee shop, and see where the magic happens. They also run workshops to share their knowledge and teach you the craft of throwing.
When at home I drink from only one cup and eat from one plate, or one bowl. It adds to the mindful experience of being present while eating – savouring the taste and enjoying the company at mealtimes. Even if I’m the only one who has my own special handmade delph! Arran Street is available from a growing retail list of stockist and online stockists. They also have an online shop where you can buy direct from the studio.
Headspace is probably the best known meditation App with the largest library of guided meditations to support you through every eventuality in life. There are thousands of studies that have shown mindfulness meditation can positively impact mental and physical health. Headspace is committed to researching the science behind this ancient practice to understand its far reaching benefits.
I had been meditating for a while before I started using Headspace, but felt I needed a bit of extra guidance and wanted to learn a bit more about different meditation techniques, like noting and visualisation. It is fast becoming the most daily used App on my iPhone. I meditate every morning with Headspace, picking either an individual guided meditation or a themed course. Along with the daily meditations I use it to support specific need like ‘Presentations’ before a meeting or ‘Transforming Anger’ if I’ve blow a fuse with the kiddies and need some ‘headspace’. I’ve even used the ‘Losing your Temper’ meditation on the kids – getting them to sit quietly, listen to the meditation and take a minute after for contemplation. It’s a fantastic parenting tool!
Meditation may not change life events but it does help change your reaction to life events. It helps you stay present and not get caught up in the ‘what ifs’ wheel. The benefits of the practice are far greater than the value of the small amount of time required for your daily practice.
Headspace are currently running a 40% off for a whole year of meditation. Simply go to their website and subscribe. I started with this deal last January and loved it so much I’ve just resubscribed for another year. You can also sign up for a free trial which gives you a few sample meditations.
MOONS YOGA LOFT
Dublin yogis you’re in for a treat! This new boutique studio is a little gem. Created by award winning yoga teacher and public speaker Sinead Mooney (aka Moons). The care and attention to every little experiential detail that has gone into this beautiful little space is both obvious and subtle too. The heating system is a negative ion system which both warms you up from the inside and counteracts the overload of positive charge we pick up from overuse of everyday electrical devices. This beautiful intimate, bright and warm studio is full of love, kindness and happy vibes. Moons radiates the love of the practice and her passion to create a space where her students can experience and own this powerful practice for their unique lives. ‘To not only survive... but to thrive.’
There is a full schedule of classes to choose from, including Slow Flow, Yin, Yoga Fundamentals, Prenatal and weekend workshops. You’ll find me there every Thursday morning for my 9:15am class. Booking in advance is recommended.
To find out more about Moons Yoga Loft and to book classes check out the website. Classes can be booked direct online from MINDBODY or on your mobile by downloading the Mindbody App from the App store.
Ruth Delahunty Yogaru