Creating a sense of place and identity inspired by Headford's lacemaking heritage is a goal which won Headford Lace Project the national Tidy Towns Heritage Award (2017). We achieve these objectives through collaboration with other community groups and artists.

The Headford Lace Story

This feature-length documentary was produced by Ed Coulson for Claremorris Community Radio. It reveals how a group of women in Headford stumbled across a mostly forgotten history of lacemaking in their town, and how a tiny fragment of lace became the starting point for countless cultural and regenerative events and projects – and created a sisterhood along the way.

We hear the voices of many of the women involved in researching and promoting the story of the local lace industry, as well as artists and textile experts. There are also moving personal accounts of the support and friendship provided by the lace group itself.

The documentary includes music created in Headford, inspired by the lace story – from Mairead Berrill and Headford Music Works, Drumadore and Claran Theatre, and 2018 RTÉ Folk Awards nominees, The Whileaways. Huge thanks to them all! It also includes a portion of 'Caritas Dei' by the Gloriae Dei Cantores Schola and a recording by Aengus McMahon Photography, used by kind permission.

The Space Between

Curated by international lace artist, Fiona Harrington, The Space Between was an international exhibition of lace, comprising of artwork selected from 34 artists, from 11 countries across 4 different continents, all unified by one common interest - LACE.

Running from 10-18 October 2020, this show provided a platform for those working with this medium to share their work with the people of Headford and further afield. Taking the form of an art trail, the windows of local businesses and buildings were transformed into a series of tiny galleries.

The title of the exhibition references the way in which lace is defined by the ‘space’ between the threads, as well as highlighting how lace exists in an ‘in-between’ space, completely open to interpretation, adaptation and innovation.

Contact us to order a copy of the full-colour, 132-page exhibition catalogue for €5 plus postage.

Bobbin Beats

bobbin beats1

We are excited to announce an exciting collaboration with Drumadore and Claran Theatre. Headford is so lucky to have these two top class groups resident and active here, and Headford Lace Project is very excited that they have both agreed to work with us.

Drumadore are a drumming troupe who have perform regularly for Connacht Rugby, form a core part of the Macnas drumming group and have even appeared on the Late Late Toy Show. Headed by the one and only Eimhin Cradock they aim for fit body, fit mind, fit soul.

Claran Theatre is headed up by Miquel Barcelo and Judith Higgins, two performers and trainers that trained at Ecole Jacques Lecoq and have performed all over the world. They have been sharing their skills with young people in Claran, just outside Headford for several years now.

Both groups are being inspired by the history and techniques of bobbin lace making in Headford and are excited to be working on a joint project which will premiere in Autumn 2020.

We are very grateful to Galway County Council and Creative Ireland County Galway for their generous support in making this project happen.


aengus archive

Headford Lace Project are excited to be collaborating with photographer Aengus McMahon Photography. Aengus is a two time PPAI (Photojournalism) award winner and we are delighted that he agreed to work with us.

With generous support from the Design & Crafts Council Ireland, Aengus is working to take high quality photographs of our growing lace archive. We will be uploading these images in the coming months to form a world class online lace archive which will serve crafters, researchers, students and lace enthusiasts worldwide.

We have added a sneak peek of our Lace Archive already so you can get a taste of what is to come. We think you'll be as excited as we are!

Special thanks to committee members Ger Henry Hassett for curating our archive so professionally and Norma Owens for sorting the website end of things.


Video Installation on Culture Night 2019 with JoJo Hynes 

190703 headford music works

Local artist JoJo Hynes created a video installation at the Angler's Rest in Headford for Culture Night, kindly supported by Culture Night through Galway County Council. The video, entitled 'Forget Me Not', commemorated thirteen girls and young women who left Ireland for Australia and Tasmania under the Assisted Migration Scheme in the nineteenth century.


'Irish Roses, Bride ship Lasses' Tribute Project with Dr. Christina Henri

190703 headford music works

Headford Lace Project collaborated with Dr. Christina Henri's 'Irish Roses, Bride ship Lasses' project to honour the memory of Irish girls and young women who left Ireland for Australia and Tasmania under the Assisted Migration Scheme in the nineteenth century. The project involves making a bonnet for each of the 4,000 plus Irish women who were sent to populate the English colony, thirteen of whom were from Headford. Each bonnet is embroidered with the woman's name, the ship she sailed on, and the year of her emigration. Headford Lace Project with our friends have contributed 143 bonnets so far. 


Music Composition with Headford Music Works

190703 headford music works

Summer 2019 sees a new and exciting collaboration in Headford, Co. Galway as Headford Lace Project works with Headford Music Works to produce a new orchestral piece inspired by the heritage of lace making in the town. Students of Headford Music Works took the famous Irish air called Molly St George, which was written about one of the original patrons of the Lace industry in Headford. They will take the component parts and interweave them similar to the bobbins crossing and twisting in the lace-making process. The project began with the HMW summer school being visited by members of the Headford Lace Project committee who showed students bobbins, pillows, and basic stitches to help their understanding of the process. The collaboration culminated in a performance of the newly composed symphonic piece at an evening of celebration called 'Lace Notes & Other Stories' in Headford in late September.


Headford Lace Song by The Whileaways

the whileaways

Headford Lace Project have collaborated with local songwriters and musicians, The Whileaways, to compose a song inspired by Headford Lace to bring the memory of our local lacemakers back into the public consciousness. With funding from Galway County Council's Community Support Schemes - Cultural Development, the song has been professionally recorded and will be available soon.

In 2020, the song was also recorded with the RTÉ Concert Orchestra, and can be heard from 39 minutes into the following radio programme:


Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture - Small Towns, Big Ideas


From over 150 applicants, 52 successful Small Towns Big Ideas projects were announced this week. Headford Lace Project is extremely honored to be chosen to represent Headford and Irish Lace in this amazing project. 

The Headford Lace Project seeks to revive Headford’s lacemaking heritage and contribute to the vibrant cultural life of Headford, by bringing the story of lace to life for a new generation and placing Headford firmly on the map locally, nationally and internationally.

We are delighted to have the opportunity to create a permanent artwork for Headford in collaboration with artist, Róisín De Buitléar and supported by Galway 2020


Headford Lace Garden

20180824 headford lace bench 50

Headford Lace Project in collaboration with Headford Environment Group has established a Lace Garden at the Community Orchard. The Environment Group planted a lace-inspired garden of white flowering plants surrounded by a fence made of lace-bobbin shaped posts, and Headford Lace Project commissioned a park bench, the design of which is inspired by Headford Lace. Both the bench and fence were produced by Kilkee Forge. The Headford Lace bench was made possible thanks to funding from Galway County Council Facilities Scheme, prize money received by Headford Lace Project for winning the Tidy Towns Heritage Award (2017), and labour provided by the Rural Social Scheme. 


Heritage Signs

190410 newst heritage sign

Headford Lace Project has been instrumental in the instalment of heritage signs around the town. We collaborated with the Headford Environment Group for one at the Community Orchard. We also installed this one on New Street, where many of the original lacemakers once lived. This was achieved with support from Galway County Council Heritage Office under the Community Support Scheme.


World Lace Congress

180811 oidfa01

Headford Lace Project members Norma Owens and Jackie Magnin created pieces of Headford Lace which were included in the Guild of Irish Lacemakers' presentation at the World Lace Congress in Zaandam, The Netherlands.


Headford Lace Inspired Printed Silk Scarf

180903 cifd01

Under the auspices of the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland and the Council of Irish Fashion Designers, Headford Lace Project was delighted to collaborate with Galway designer Niamh Daniels


Collaboration with Men's Shed & Local Master Woodturner

hlp mens shed

Headford Lace Project collaborated with the local Men's Shed and local master woodturner, Ambrose O'Halloran, to run a workshop on turning wooden lace bobbins.