An Spailpín Fánach began in 1979 as a small project to set about promoting the Irish language in a modern way by producing and marketing button badges, car stickers and T-shirts, all as Gaeilge. For many years we spent the summer months travelling the length and breadth of the country peddling our wares, and making many new friends especially in the Gaeltacht areas and among Irish speakers everywhere.

Since 1985 An Spailpín Fánach has had its base in the Ceardlann or Craft Village, An Spidéal, an attractive complex of workshops set up by Údarás na Gaeltachta (The Gaeltacht Authority) in a beautiful location, by the sea, in the Conamara Gaeltacht.

Spailpín team on Saint Patrick's Day

Screen-printing is our own craft. We do all design and printing work in-house and try to come up with new ideas and designs on a regular basis. Turlough O'Connor is our print manager, and Hedi Gotthalmseder, a recently adopted Irish-speaking Austrian, manages the shop, while I'm the chief bottle washer and general dog's body.

In summer we are ably assisted by some young local people who contribute greatly to our work. Our designs range from Heritage to Celtic, proverbs and cartoons, and indeed we feel we have something for everyone. We endeavour to keep up with styles in fashion, often adding new garments to our range.

While still concentrating mainly on products of our own design, our shop space in the craft village enables us to offer a huge range of Irish language, Gaeltacht and heritage items including toys & games and lots more. Our aim is to be of service to Irish speakers and to those who wish to include the language in their daily lives. In summertime we also welcome many foreign visitors to our shop and we enjoy sharing our Gaeltacht heritage with them.

We appreciate your support.

Gearóid agus Criú an Spailpín