Friday, 28 August 2015

our new roller collection is getting closer

The first pallet of samples arrived from our sample maker today, while we are about to sign-off the artwork so our printer ABC in Hereford can get to work.

We think our new collection is one of the best we've ever done, so we're getting excited and can't wait. Here's one of the new adverts :


Thursday, 27 August 2015

Wedgewood Museum and factory

I was driving back from Manchester, the motorway was packed and horrible, and the only places for lunch were the motorway services.

However, I suddenly remembered that the Wedgwood museum had won loads of awards, had amazing treasures, and surely there'd be a café with some really serious china plates, cups or tea pots???

Following the signs, I went south of Stoke through little country lanes until I got to the Wedgwood Estate at Barlaston. The factory was relocated there in the 30's, and it's a lovely place to visit. The factory is still here, but new showrooms, offices, restaurants and lovely tea rooms have been added, while a lot of new development work is going on.

I was starving so headed for the first restaurant, and loved the great staff which were so elegantly dressed and the excellent lunch menu.

Josiah Wedgwood has always been one of my hero's. He was an early entrepreneur of huge sophistication, a chemist, an amazing inventor,  an architect of the Industrial Revolution and Enlightenment, a designer and man of impeccable taste. Yet he came from humble origins and was the Steve Jobs of his age. The Wedgwood family is also closely interwoven with the Darwin's, as Charles Darwin (who wrote Origins of the Species) was a close relative.

The Wedgwood factory and museum attracts lots of overseas visitors, and I was there with lots of enthusiastic French, German, Japanese and Chinese people.

The factory is spotless and manufacturing staff dressed in Wedgwood-blue coloured overalls, and it always amazes me how clean these factories are, as these guys are basicly working with wet mud.

It is the same with Bronte Porcelain or Kinver Ceramic in Worcestershire, who hand-make New House's Porcia or Herringbone pulls in fine English bone china items.

The museum was exceptional, and no wonder it has won so many awards. The early Jasper china is amazing and I should have taken a lot more images.

I loved this early china where various colour clays were mixed to give interesting effects ;

Jasper silhouettes were all the rage years ago, and I wondered why Wedgwood couldn't revive the process using digital techniques today?

 People loved ruins years ago, especially when recreated in fine china ;

These were a few things I loved :

I really liked the shape of these salt shakers, and if they were avaiable today, I'd buy them :

A design by Ravilious :

After the museum I was gasping for a cup of tea. There are two tea rooms, and the tea selection so amazing that they offer you a small 'taster' to help you decide. The Wedgwood tea rooms are better than being at Fortnum's & Masons. 

There's lots to see at the Wedgwood museum, and I'd recommend a visit to anyone!

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

A few images from the forthcoming NHT roller & accessory collection.

Yesterday I was at Petersen Creative in Cheltenham, as our designers Melanie Darwin and Charlotte Farmer were working with Steve Tustin on our new collection.

Steve is the unsung hero of New House as has done our graphic design forever, and the girls love him for good reason. He's got a cool style, but unlike most other graphic designers is happy to let our demanding designers sit next to him while manipulating their images. This works great for us, as Melanie & Charlotte truly know what they are about and having a digital magician like Steve working on their raw images means they get exactly what they intended, and is a gift.

By the end of this week the graphic design of our new collection should be going to the printer, so Steve gave me a few 'official' images yesterday :

Givanchy is a Monet-like print of many colours.

White Fern is part of an extensive white collection. Many of these prints have a puff-binder added to the printing ink, so they have a stronger body that even when held against strong sunlight, the design is still greatly emphersised.

Chicago is a new burn-out design.

Charlotte Farmer's successful Seaside Fun design is now a new roller blind fabric, but  also available as a kitchen tea towel, desirable mugs, coasters and trays too.

This lovely Wave design by Melanie Darwin will be part of a new nautical section.

Florabunda by Laura Fletcher was originally created as a water colour, and then transfered to fabric.

Margo is another Laura Fletcher design that was also originated in watercolours.

Solo is a new NHT plain, and here it has been photographed with our new Zigzag braid, that was designed by Laura.