This year another birthday treat was my mom taking me to the Avoca Mill Store in Avoca Village, Wicklow. One of my favorite places of all time here in Ireland is the huge Avoca Store in Rathcoole (where we also went that day,) but I had never been to the original woolen mill. I’m realizing that one thing I absolutely love is finding out how things are made. It’s almost hard for me to appreciate something unless I can figure out how it’s done. Or maybe that aspect of the process just adds to my appreciation. That’s probably more realistic. (I can appreciate the deliciousness of sliced processed American cheese without needing-or wanting- to know the process and ingredients.) But in regards to handcrafted items, I love to see where and how they are crafted. So what a delight to go to the the Avoca Mill and see a functioning factory in full operation!
They charge no admission fee and it is a self-guided tour that takes you from types of wool all the way through to the packing and shipping department. (I didn’t realize they sell their items in every continent of the world…) The looms are incredible and the time it takes to bring each strand of wool through the eye holes can take up to a couple days. For one item! Now I know why they charge so dearly for their products. Seeing the process sure makes me appreciate the finished product that much more.
I loved learning the history of Avoca and the three Wynne sisters who introduced colour (of course that would be my favourite part) in the 1920’s. The colours they use and the way they use them often makes me want to wear wool-something I wouldn’t normally be drawn to…except for its inherent warmth. Across the property they have a shop, selling mostly their wool goods, plus a small area with gifts for children and some seasonal items. I loved seeing the old stone building, and the little creek that runs gracefully through the property. It’s a getaway in and of itself, I only wish it were nearer and more accessible so I could easily take visitors when they come.
location: Avoca Store, Cafe & Mill Tour, The Mill at Avoca Village, Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Cor-ords: 52.861129, -6.210069