Chard-based Doris & Co prides itself on its devotion to making English creamware pottery and homewares using old fashioned methods traditional to England. Run by Emma Warren for almost two years, the company’s designs are all based on Georgian or early Industrial shapes, combined with a touch of Doris & Co “loveability”.
Emma: “I’m based on a small farm in the Blackdown Hills so my inspiration comes from there. I love old-fashioned sayings so am always on the lookout for new inspiration for products. Doris as a company name embodies a character that people can relate to – she’s slightly batty and a bit out of era, but that’s part of the ethos of Doris – we just jolly well get on with it!”
Emma says the company’s aim is to serve good people, good things made in England, and her range includes creamware mugs and jugs, wrought iron trivets, tea towels, and jute bags. Her aim is to make things that last – both in a practical, and sentimental sense – and she wants to create designs that are heartfelt, honest and enduring, passed down through the generations.
Emma: “The company was started in 2011 by someone else – but due to other commitments, she had let it lie fallow. I loved the brand and when I saw that it was looking for a new owner was immediately interested. I’ve been involved for 18 months now and we have been rationalising the existing offerings back to the core designs as well as working on new products and designs. I originally trained as an accountant but now spend most of my time on creative type work, whether it be marketing campaigns or dreaming up ideas for new products and bringing them to market.”
Each and every Doris mug is hand cast in creamware – a cream coloured, light earthernware – in Stoke-on-Trent.
Emma: “Our Dorisware is decorated using the old fashioned in-glaze method which gives our wares an old fashioned subtlety of appearance but makes them at the same time resilient to use, and butter fingers and dishwasher proof. This is why we like to say our Dorisware is made of stern stuff.”
So what makes Emma – and Doris – love Somerset?
Emma: “I moved here from the Fens 20 years ago and, whilst I loved living in the Fens, when we came to Somerset I felt like we had arrived at our forever home. Even now the scenery never ceases to amaze me, and hubby and I breathe a collective sigh of relief as we drive back past the Somerset sign if we’ve been away. It’s a place with a lot of depth, which a lot of people miss as they whizz through on their way to Devon and Cornwall. There’s a definite connection to the land and the collective history of the place. I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.”