Forget the recession blues, Irish people are looking forward to brighter times ahead, with more snapping up chandeliers now than during the boom.
As Showcase Ireland got under way in the RDS yesterday, Tipperary Crystal reported a spike in sales of lighting units -- priced at between €500 and €16,000. The company sold 1,700 chandeliers last year -- an increase of 100 on 2008.
Tipperary Crystal also offered art aficionados a chance to invest in limited-edition crockery, with the launch of a new series designed by Graham Knuttel. Plates are priced at €125 and four espresso cups cost €65.
The internationally recognised artist said there has been no let-up in the demand for his works. "People are buying art but they know what they want to pay for it now," he said.
Over 400 designers and craftspeople are selling their wares at Showcase Ireland. It is hoped that €22m in sales will be secured by the end of the exhibition, said Crafts Council of Ireland, the event organiser.