Frequently Asked Questions 

If my designconsort lamp shade is damaged, can I replace it?

designconsort’s silk lampshades can be marked by our children’s dirty hands and even household pets! Don’t worry, if you cannot remove the mark or you damage your shade, replacement shades can be purchased with ease. Please email myorders@designconsort.com

 

Some of designconsort shapes are stunning – real statement pieces. Who designed them?

Each piece of designconsort starts life as a lump of Cornish clay at our pottery in Stoke-on-Trent. The shapes are designed by either Emma Bossons FRSA, designconsort’s Lead Designer, or by one of our other designers. Once the size and contours of a shape have been put to paper, the hard work of creation begins. Master mould-maker, Trevor Critchlow, is the brainchild of some of these utterly complex, multi-part moulds. It would be much easier to produce designs that have a raised ceramic outline within the mould itself but we decided that the preservation of heritage skills was a priority. As such, each design is outlined by the hand application of liquid clay before being hand painted and glazed. Emma Bossons FRSA believed that the white clay body would allow the dramatic contours of each shape to be showcased in all their brilliance, with subtle surface design creating some abstract masterpieces and geometric giants.

 

Will the piece I ordered be just like the piece I have seen on the website?

Each piece of designconsort is exquisitely handcrafted in Stoke-on-Trent, a hotbed of ceramics design. The surface design is outlined by hand with liquid clay to create a raised form of surface design. The design is then hand painted with metallic oxide paint before various lustre and vitreous glazes are applied involving multiple firings in a kiln. As such, no two pieces are exactly the same which adds to the designs unique beauty and appeal. Indeed, designconsort was launched in probably the Country’s best interior style magazine – ELLE Decoration. Please note each piece will vary slightly in colour and finish, which makes yours piece of designconsort unique and is proof that your pottery has been entirely handmade.

 

I received my piece of designconsort and it was not the colourway I wanted. What do I do?

If your order has been changed or the colourway is not what you expected, please contact myorders@designconsort.com and we will use our best endeavours to resolve the problem at our earliest opportunity. This will include offering you a full refund. Please read our returns policy in this respect.

 

I have heard that pottery crazes after some years – what does this mean?

Tiny hairline cracks are called crazing and this is a natural ageing process in earthenware ceramics. A fired porous earthenware body such as the one used by designconsort can under conditions of normal use absorb moisture from the surrounding environment and over a period of time can sometimes result in crazing of the glaze surface. In any saleroom of art and antiques, part of the process of establishing the correct vintage of a pot is to examine the crazing on the surface. It also helps identify restoration since crazed areas cannot be restored without harming the crazing. Neither can restored areas be artificially re-crazed. Conversely, an old pot, which has been refired, may well have its pedigree challenged due to the absence of familiar and friendly crazing.  

 Usually, crazing tends to start when a piece of pottery is over a decade old, and which generally comes to an end after as many as 70 years. Occasionally it can start earlier depending on the type of clay body designers choose to use. For example, a white body, like the dramatic ones used by designconsort, have been known to craze earlier if there are adverse environmental conditions. We advise buyers to display pieces in a dry environment and ideally at a constant temperature.

 There is no British Standard specification for craze resistance on earthenware products, but W Moorcroft Ltd (T/A designconsort) does on an annual basis submit samples of its product to an independent laboratory for craze resistance testing. It is worth noting that to date all samples submitted by W Moorcroft Ltd have exceeded the expected level of craze resistance.

 Once collectors know more about the natural crazing process, they more often than not do not wish to have a piece re-fired. However, if you do wish to have your piece re-glazed and re-fired then do write confirming this wish. We will then send you the relevant paperwork to complete. Contact enquiries@designconsort.com in this respect. We hope this will not be necessary for many years to come!

 Is there anything I can do to stop my vase crazing?

We advise collectors to display their pieces of designconsort in a dry environment and, ideally, at a constant temperature. As earthenware pottery is semi-porous it can absorb moisture. Some people use their designconsort to hold flowers. Whilst we believe that you should use your pottery to enhance your life in any way you feel free, holding water in an earthenware vessel for prolonged period of time may trigger premature crazing. Caution should also be noted with respect to the lustre on some pieces of designconsort – this is the shiny silver or gold glaze that shimmers and dances with interior lighting and natural sunlight. You must not rub this with excessive force or you may cause the sheen to fade. We strongly recommend that all cleaning is undertaken with a dry cloth.

 I really like the design of some of the pieces of designconsort but wish to order them in a colourway that compliments my interior?

We currently only sell in the colourways listed on the website. That said, new colourways and designs are always being undertaken by our designers, and your feedback is most appreciated. Please email any preferences to enquiries@designconsort.com Interior designers can request specific colourways which are provided at a premium depending on the quantity sought. Again, such enquiries should be addressed to the latter mentioned email.