Our Story

Our craft shop has been happily serving visitors to Iona since 1965, and has always been a rare outpost for quality Scottish craft and design. 

Current owners Michael and Kate Gordon took over the helm in 2005, transforming the business from a seasonal gift shop into a creative engine that welcomes locals and visitors all year round. At the heart of their ethos is a recognition of Iona’s long and lasting cultural heritage, and an understanding of the journey made by each visitor that steps through their door. 

Through collaboration with artists and art organisations they work to enrich the cultural landscape that they live in, and by maintaining close supplier relationships they can be confident that all the beautiful things on display meet their own rigorous ethical and environmental standards.

Whether viewed as a place of artistic endeavour or an island of spiritual tranquility, Iona encourages us all to reflect and strive for better, which is the simple guiding principle of Iona Craft Shop.

Meet the Craft Shop Crew  - keeping the ship shop shape!

Michael Gordon

Michael is an art school graduate who had to employ himself in order to get a job. There were a few lost years chasing waves and ideas, but like so many others he eventually washed up on Iona and is now a vaguely respectable citizen. He is part of Iona’s Volunteer Fire & Rescue Unit, co founder of the Iona Village Hall Music Festival, and lives on the island with his wife Kate and their two children.

Kate Gordon

Was a perfectly respectable citizen teaching English and History until she was persuaded to move to Iona and run the Craft Shop. Her instincts have defined the business and she has the strongest eye in the buying team, which is ironic given how bad her eyesight is. If the shop does manage to turn a profit it goes straight to her opticians. She is a dedicated member of the Village Hall Committee, which used to be the fun one with a lot of wine at the meetings, but with current fundraising pressures is now a full time job.

Isla Macleod Jardine

Quite a long name isn’t it?  Isla is another art school graduate, but with an unusual and brilliant skill set that makes her ideally suited to her role as Shop Manager. She combines endless creative flair with an almost diagnosable love of systems and order, and without her the shop would be an altogether duller and more disorganised place. Her strengths are too numerous to count, but her weaknesses are highlighter pens, Dymo printers, Baileys Irish Cream and Love Island. 

Rebecca Knight

Rebecca is the only one of the shop crew who actually has any previous experience of working in a shop! Things improved considerably when she came aboard. We used to just leave the goods in a big heap and read books until a customer approached the till. Now we’re on our feet, folding and sprucing. She has lived and worked on the island since 2005 and is another member of the Hall Committee. She has a ridiculously cute son and her partner Stewart drives around the island in a golf buggy. 

Joanne MacInnes

Joanne has a degree in marketing and tourism, but has spent most of her working life as a fundraiser which is a particularly useful skill on the island these days. She is a very dedicated member of the Hall committee, and basically keeps the whole island from sinking beneath the waves. Originally from Dundee, she has an affinity with the dark arts, a wicked sense of humour and a rare understanding of how island living works. Married to a farmer but not a farmer's wife!

Zoe Macdonald

Zoe is the youngest but most widely travelled member of the crew. We welcome visitors from all over the world, and in most cases Zoe will have visited their hometown. Originally from the neighbouring island of Mull, Zoe graduated with a degree in music from Newcastle, and has finally settled back on Iona having just married a local crofter. As well as helping run the campsite and Iona Pods, she teaches fiddle and singing to the local children, and leads the legendary Iona Primary School Choir.

Daniela Francia

Our longest serving crewmember, Daniela came aboard to help when Mike and Katie had their first child back in 2009, and has been an invaluable asset ever since. Originally from Italy and still very Italian, she has been living on Iona longer than most, and probably has more followers than Columba. She is full of surprises and keeps us all healthy and grounded with her potions and notions, and through her work as a Bowen Practitioner.