Tea and Cocktails with Richard Brendon
When I first came across Richard Brendon’s ceramics, I could hardly believe that the adept designer and craftsman is a relative new-comer in a long line of British ceramics. His style is just impeccable, taking from the rich tradition of Stoke-on-Trent ceramics, and updating it in the most fabulously chic ways.
Brendon started his eponymous brand right out of design school in 2012, combining his background in design and ceramics with his love for antiques. Growing up in Notting Hill going to Portobello Road to see what new and curious things he could find, Brendon was always drawn to the traditions and history of British craft.
The first idea came out of that sensibility. He loved collecting old British tea sets, but found that the cups were more often broken or damaged, leaving behind so many beautiful but orphaned saucers. He decided to combine these antique saucers he’d collected with a newly designed mirrored teacup. This way, the cup would reflect the intricate pattern on the saucers, creating an instant match from a variety of pieces. It’s the ultimate in mix-n-match maximalism, but with a chic, contemporary twist.
Now the brand has grown by leaps and bounds, with full lines of ceramics, crystal and glassware in a variety of beautiful designs. I love the classic mirrored cups with their wide array of patterned pairs, but the more modern Willow patterns are also so smart; a take on a classic blue china pattern, but only in select spots on the otherwise white ceramics. And have I mentioned the total bespoke capabilities and partnerships? Brendon now designs and produces unique collections for some of the top restaurants, bars, and hotels around the world, including the Four Seasons, Harrods, G. F. Smith, and Grenson, to name just a few.
I just love how fun these collections are, yet they are also so committed to craft and tradition. The ceramics are made in the birthplace of ceramics, Stoke-on-Trent, and the crystal and glassware is perfectly cut in Bohemia, where they have been honing those crafts for generations. A set of Richard Brendon ceramics or glassware surely will be the heirlooms of the next generation! Lovely ones.