Ever since our wedding in 2012 I have been building up a healthy Emma Bridgewater (EB) collection; Dots and Rose & Bee are my absolute favourites but I pretty much love all their designs.
This was my first visit and although many friends and family have visited previously I didn’t really know what to expect. Upon arrival we headed straight to the ‘cosy kitchen cafe’ and it really was just that. Super lovely staff who made a real effort with Poppy and delicious food. Past Emma Bridgewater designs line the walls and a quite frankly staggering dotty Aga sits central to two huge dressers! If the weather had been anything other than torrential rain we would have ventured into the beautiful walled garden but sadly it was a typical British summer day so we camped out in the comfort of the cafe.
Next we headed to the Decorating studio where we had pre-booked our slots at a cost of £2.95 per person to secure our spot of 1hr 30 mins. The lovely lady who runs the studio came and gave us a great demonstration and was on hand if we had needed any assistance with printing Poppys hands and feet. As Poppy had preferred to take her nappy off inside her sleeping bag (I kid you not) during her morning nap time at home (resulting in no napping) and had found the car journey far too exciting to nap we decided it was best to not bait the over-tired bear by removing her from where she was under control.
I chose to do two mugs in a meadow theme; the first with bunnies and birds and the second with a fox and bunny leaping through a butterfly-filled meadow (these sound way better than they actually look 😉 ). Mummy chose to do a mug for Poppy featuring her name and her favourite things – Dogs, bouncy balls and chickens! I know I know, Granny was way more thoughtful with her design than I was!
The mugs were £15 each which I know sounds a lot but first of all the studio location is so lovely (chicks cheeping in the background whilst you’re creating your masterpiece! Just too cute!) and secondly, the colour range and quality is fantastic as well as the amazing range of sponge shapes on offer. I went to a local pottery decorating place when Poppy was small and not only was the colour selection and sponge shape options majorly limited compared to EB but you had to apply layer after layer in order to get any colour definition which you don’t have to at EB. For these points alone I would say it is worth every penny.
Our next destination was the Factory shop. I’m not at all fussy about seconds (most of my collection is seconds from the online outlet!) so this was like heaven for me. Row upon row of wonderfulness! If however, you prefer perfection then there is also a Gift shop with all the current ranges as well as the fabulous sale items. Needless to say we came away heavily ladened with new purchases.
We had a totally wonderful day and will definitely be back again for more decorating and to go on the Factory Tour. We visited during the annual potters holiday, which lasts until 13th July, so tours were unfortunately unavailable.
We now excitedly await delivery of our glazed and fired creations!