May 12 2011
If you enjoy hearing stories about the products you’re buying, you can watch videos of designer-makers at work, read their interviews and e-mail questions directly to them at Seek & Adore, a new site selling handmade homewares and accessories.
The site was launched last February by Hatty Fawcett after she realised how time-consuming it is to track down distinctive homewares at craft fairs, design shows and galleries. A belief that designer-makers deserve a stronger online presence prompted her to create a site (with a free, seven-day returns policy on most items) dedicated to selling original designs that are either one-offs or handmade in small runs.
The site lets you shop by product, room or material (mainly ceramic, glass, wood or metal). In Decorative Accessories I was drawn to wood-turner Richard Shock’s tactile burr elm bowl with raw bark edges (£48) and ceramicist Georgina Fowler’s quirky Clock Cat Plate (£48), and elegant Green Butterfly vase (£76).
I found several gifts for friends in the Tableware section: Shock’s silky surfaced sycamore salad bowl with his signature inlays in the rim (£85), and Timea Sido’s ceramic Tangled Cake Stand with Dome (first picture, £110), whose intricate latticework pattern gives the piece an intriguing, textural quality. Fans of contemporary ceramics might also like Lara Scobie’s dishwasher-safe, slip-cast jug with hand-drawn patterns and turquoise stripes (£54).
Design experts’ favourite picks include Kelly Hoppen’s choice of Amanda Simmons’ Dark Skies, Bright City, a kiln-formed glass vessel in black and vanilla (second picture, £60), while crafts writer Perri Lewis selects Timea Sido’s contemporary hand-thrown teacups with extravagant gold lustre handles (£22). Fawcett’s intention to continue bringing new designer-makers on board (there were 22 at the time of writing) should make this a site worth revisiting time and again.