Having first discovered and used Copper & Silk when I worked at Helen Green Design all those years ago it is no surprise to learn that they supply the top 10 London interior design companies. Their quality and their options are second to none. What is exceptional about the company is that they have kept all purchasing options open to their clients. By this I mean that they sell to both trade, retail as well as the individual home owner. Their website is so comprehensive that it makes the process in ordering a shade a doddle. It can literally be just a single shade that you order, you won't be turned away for not reaching any minimal spend. But if you have a bigger, bespoke project in mind they can handle that too.
There is an art to creating beautiful shades. Using techniques that have to be done by hand, by a variety of skilled tradesman each with their role to play to create the final product. Copper & Silk is a company filled with artisans working in a warehouse in North London, producing the beautiful shades that so often add the final detailed touches to so many homes. Read on to learn more about the company with my interview with Copper & Silk.
Who is the founder of Copper & Silk and when was the company created?
Copper & Silk was founded in 2010 by Creative Director, Daniel Fosbery. Working with a factory that had been manufacturing lampshades for over thirty years, Copper & Silk set up a partnership and created a new company – one that offered the excellent tailor-made lampshade service that clients were looking for, backed up by the knowledge of skilled craftspeople.
We now have a huge catalogue of custom lampshades, with enough fabrics, size, fitting and lining choices to allow for over 70,000 different possible lampshade options.
We’ve also expanded into decorative lighting, and offer a wider range of stock lighting designs – from intricate wall lights to enormous industrial-inspired chandeliers. We also developed a contract department, where we take the concepts of clients and engineer these into beautiful bespoke lights.
What is the company’s ethos?
We are proud and passionate about design and craft in the UK. We believe that nothing beats craftsmanship when it comes to making beautiful things, so we ensure that all our lampshades and lighting are made with care and attention to detail.
Our dedication to British craftsmanship informs our design process, so when we discover a technique that thrills us, we can't wait to try it.
This has inspired us to create an eclectic range of decorative lighting with design integrity and elegance at its heart. We work exclusively with the finest materials - solid brass, hevea wood, fired glass and luxurious fabrics - because we believe in the integrity of quality.
Our commitment to outstanding customer service is considered in everything we do, and our expert team are always available to offer helpful and detailed advice. We tailor our service to meet our customers’ needs; giving the same care to a single lampshade order as we would to supplying the UK’s largest retailers and top interior designers. We aim to push this even further with the launch of our online shade ‘builder’; offering our customers complete creative control over the making process.
What are the various techniques involved?
Our making team’s wealth of experience allows us to use a huge range of specialist techniques to make our customers’ lampshades unique.
All our lampshades are hand made to order, so meticulous care is vital at every stage of the making process. We hand gather all our pleated shades and create custom panels for our card-lined lampshades, in order to get every aspect just right.
You also offer luxury lighting to compliment the shades with an option of creating something bespoke. Have you got a team in the UK that allows you to do this?
Our Creative Director oversees our thriving bespoke department, which represents one of the most exciting aspects of our work. When a sketch is submitted to us for a bespoke light we plan out the construction, order materials and work within customer budgets to capture the quality and detail desired.
Due to our factory resources and relationships with UK craftspeople, we can offer a wide range of bespoke techniques including metal spinning, bronzing and glass work. The bespoke Aster chandeliers we created for Jamie’s Italian restaurants, for example, were constructed from solid brass, with sixteen individually fired seeded glass shades.
How many people are employed by Copper & Silk to keep up with the demand of your consumers?
Copper & Silk is made up of a small, friendly team, based at our factory in NW10. We employ around fifteen lampshade makers as well as commissioning numerous skilled metal and glass workers and other craftspeople.
Although we do not have an enormous workforce, the skill of our team is our greatest asset. It’s these skills that allow us to produce orders for retailers, hotels, restaurants and other large projects to such a high standard.
What can we look forward to seeing from Copper & Silk over the year ahead?
Copper & Silk have a lot of plans for 2016, including improving our website – you can already “build” your own lampshade online but we’ve come up with some extras to make the process easier and more enjoyable.
We have launched a new Monochrome ikat (part of our Modern Ikat Collection collaboration with textile designer Ptolemy Mann) as well as range of printed linens displaying Copper & Silk original designs.
We will also be displaying our most recent decorative lighting collections at design junction in Kings Cross this September. It will be a new show for us, so we’re very excited to launch our new collections there.
Images of bespoke shades made by Copper & Silk; bespoke Busuba Lantern, green shades in John Lewis and the Aster in Jamie's Italian
This is not a sponsored blog
All images are courtesy of Copper & Silk