How Ireland's fairy-boom saved a couple's home

Irish Fairy Doors go from market stalls to international department stores in just three years...

Fairy doors are big business for one Irish company - but the seeds of this toy crazy here sown in the grim reality of recession Ireland.

Niamh Sherwin-Barry is one of the Irish Fairy Door Company's co-founders, along with long time friend Aoife Lawler and their husbands - Oisin and Gavin - she joined Bobby Kerr on Down to Business to tell him about the origins of the company.

She reflects that before they started making fairy doors the couple were on the verge of losing their home - she thinks that eventually was "a year away" in 2013 when they started exploring the world of fairies.

When asked if the company was formed out of desperation, she told Newstalk that they felt "tired" and "overwhelmed" as they started the project, but not desperate.

"Because of the recession ... everybody was just sad all of the time," she remembers. Niamh thinks that the company captured peoples' imagination because it offered a little bit of "hope and happiness," during this difficult period.

Within months of coming up with the idea, the first door was sold. The initial €8,500 seed capital was provided by Niamh's mother who had spent almost a decade setting aside this money after she quit smoking.

Their first plan was to sell in local markets and soon positive word of mouth created a mini-sale boom.

An appearance on The Late Late Toy Show's set also helped people to discover the company - more recently a Snapchat shout out from Kourtney Kardashian has helped the company to expand into new markets.

The Irish Fairy Door Company has raised €150,000 to fund international expansion in 2017 and it is in the process of raising a further €250,000.

The Irish Independent reports that the company had total revenues of €3.2m last year.