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Heath Ceramics

Opening a new site gives us the opportunity to connect with incredible suppliers. The following was one key to making our new sites what they are today.

In conversation with: Heath Ceramics

What began as a small-scale pottery in 1948 with Edith and Brian Heath, has now evolved into a pure and simple way of life and business that shares one creative heart and many forms of expression. Heath is an American maker of goods for your home led by husband and wife team Robin Petravic and Cathy Bailey. Heath is shaping the relationship we have to the things we own, and the way we come to own them.

What was the commission for Ozone? How were you approached?

James Gurr reached out to me by email back in November 2017, explaining that he and his wife Lizzie had an eatery and coffee roastery in central London, and that they had admired Heath Ceramics from afar. The weekend before he sent the email, they had been in San Francisco and had visited our showroom. James explained that they found it to be an impressive experience. They both loved what we were doing at Heath and wanted to ask if there was an opportunity for us to work together – they asked if we would consider supplying them with dinnerware. James felt as though there were some nice synergies with how our two companies did business.

Heath was proudly founded in the States – do you think the founders ever imagined that their designs and vision would end up in places such as a kiwi coffee roastery in provincial New Zealand?

Edith designed Heath dinnerware so that it could be used for both special days and every day. whether at cafes and restaurants, or at home. With Heath Ceramics’ roots in California (our clay is from California as well). we’re sure that she would have been very pleased that Heath dinnerware is now being enjoyed in New Zealand!

Heath must get hundreds of enquiries every week. Was there anything that stood out about our request?

We don’t get hundreds of enquiries per week. but we do get a handful. James’ request stood out because we don’t work with that many international customers. He also has locations in both London AND New Zealand, and those are both locations where we don’t have a lot of customers. His request also stood out because of how thoughtful and articulate he was. I could tell that working with Heath would really have meaning for him and that he felt a connection to the brand.

How does Heath keep people excited about a specialist craft that has become so popular?

Our foundation will always be in clay and glaze – it’s where we began, and we know it well. We continue to explore the relationship between designing and making with clay and glaze. We stay curious, crafty and varied, and have an interest in new mediums, materials and experiences.

With such a huge demand for unique ceramics these days, how do you set yourselves apart from those who mimic and mass produce traditional ceramics approaches?

We’re thankful to be in a position where creativity, and not sales, drives what we do. Designing and making interesting things and great products excite us. We stay focused on preserving the culture of local manufacturing and are transparent about the process. We also care about our customers’ ability to purchase our products over time, and we count on the fact that these things are important to our customers.

Finally, what’s the Heath philosophy behind gathering and creating good design?

You’ll see other items from like-minded designers and makers in our showrooms and at our annual ‘Make Good Market’. In addition to the goods that we design and make in-house, we like having timeless, well-made products from like-minded companies that complement good design for the way we eat, live, and connect.