Made in Britain

How important is it to you to buy products which have been grown or manufactured in your own country? Surely it’s a good way to get people back to work, instil some national pride and cut down on our carbon foot print?

Earlier this year I decided to produce a range of home wares and I was determined to design and manufacture them here in Great Britain. The first designs are a set of kitchen textiles which I think have architectural overtones. I am well aware that the market is awash with decorative kitchen textiles but I was keen to produce something for the contemporary kitchen – my designs can’t be described as pretty, and a friend actually thought they were quite masculine but I was pleased with that, it’s what I intended!

The designs are all screen printed – a long process but the best process for obtaining vibrant colours and colours that stay truer for longer. Digital printing is fine for some things but as it’s strong flat colour that interests me, screen printing was the answer (all the inks are water based causing minimal environmental impact). I decided to print onto linen union because the texture and slubs you find on linen gives the product more character.

So, they are designed and printed in Great Britain (including the brand label which has been woven) but I have paid the cost of taking this route. I hope it works out (I could have had them printed abroad for a fraction of the cost) but it gives me immense satisfaction having them produced here in Great Britain – I hope it is important to buyers too. I thought it was interesting to see that a new Made in UK  logo is set to appear in our shops next year.

My retailers would prefer me not to display the textiles until they have the stock (by the end of the month) which is why I have only inserted a tiny image of my proofs above.

Below are some of the reasons why I like living and working in Scotland. Where do you live and why?

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14 thoughts on “Made in Britain

  1. If I wake up each day with breathtaking views like in these photos, I would be inspired to do anything. Scotland is amazing. I’m happy for you pursuing your passion. I wish all the success in life. Beautiful post! Have a wonderful day.

  2. Huge congratulation m’dear! I know how long & hard you’ve worked getting the design, colours & manufacturing sorted. Put me down for a bag full – great Christmas presents. Having had a sneak preview of the designs I can confidently say that they are framable too! Buy British everyone!

  3. Beautiful pictures of Scotland, and judging by the sneak peek, your textiles are also beautiful – in a masculine way :-)

    I would much rather buy products that are made in Canada and produce that is grown locally. But as you can probably relate to living in Scotland, the growing season is short and not everything can be grown here, so there isn’t much choice about buying produce from the US and South America and Africa.

    Looking forward to seeing the full reveal of your textiles soon :-)

  4. Thanks Kelly and yes, I buy local when I can and try to eat seasonal produce but of course you are quite right, there are exceptions – I do like the odd mango which is not something I’m going to find hanging from a tree round here!

  5. So exciting to glimpse your gorgeous textiles! Just beautiful (of course!) and I love your ethos. Your photos and blog posts are truly inspirational. So inspirational i’ve even finally worked out how to post a comment!!
    Thank you Niki! Will you be selling @ DCA ?

  6. It is very important to me to buy products that are grown or manufactured in the UK for all the reasons that you list. Some things we don’t seem to have a choice about as many manufacturers have gone abroad – usually for higher profits. I don’t mind goods from abroad that are directly from the person making them.
    Good for you printing your kitchen textiles here – have you printed them yourself or had them printed? The small images look very intriguing.
    Jacqui

  7. So glad you commented as I can now explore your blog and its wonderful photography. I have to agree with this post the only way I see that we could start to selvage some national pride, community, ecconomy and skills is to start insisting that manufacturing comes back and that we become more self sufficient in our consumption.

    • Yes, I totally agree. I actually think makers who have things manufactured in UK should get some tax breaks for doing so because its generally a lot more expensive and we should be encouraged to use uk manufacturers and we shouldn’t really have to shoulder the extra costs. Thanks Hazel for your comment.

  8. I’m not printing them Jacqui but I have a lovely company doing that for me who are based in rural England & employ local people.They also try to employ as many people with special needs as they can. I’ve designed some cashmere throws too which I will have made in a Scottish mill but I cant afford to manufacture them quite yet. Oh, and some silk scarfs……the creating part is the best isnt it!

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