Everything about a Qtique mug is charmingly British. We design them in our studios in London and the Cotswolds, our British suppliers source our materials in the Southwest of England (hello Cornwall and Devon!), and our mugs are crafted and printed in the home of pottery making, Stoke-on-Trent. From the very beginning, our founding principle was to support British manufacturing and it is something that we are very proud to have achieved.
Before we started making mugs, we became very interested about the provenance of the things we bought. We kind of got a little over-enthusiast about it. The story of the product became increasingly more important as we began to learn that in a lot of cases, the product was not fully British when it misleadingly implied to be. We found that a lot of the products that had marketed themselves as a Great British product were in fact not actually manufactured in these Isles at all. Under the guise of a British brand, the materials (or the entire product itself) were sourced cheaply elsewhere, and then shipped over here where the company would put together/finish/print onto it. For us, this didn’t make sense – yes, outsourcing oversees means lower costs, but what about all the other hugely important factors? Like creating a product that doesn’t have a massive carbon footprint? Supporting and preserving British manufacturing? Investing in our communities and providing employment and money for the good folk of Great Britain? Having goods expertly made by trained skilled craftsmen? Locally sourcing the best possible materials? And using the best possible quality manufacturing methods to make the best possible product?
What seems to have been forgotten is that we still can make so many wonderful things here within the UK, from shoes to cars to beds (and everything in between!). It’s just that this industry had been in steady decline for the past 30 years and needed a revival. Foreign made products have become the norm, but there is a renewed interest in manufacturing high-quality specialist products, and once again ‘Made in England’ has become the go-to for luxury. And rightly so, why wouldn’t we want to make our products in a country known for its quality craftsmanship, history and heritage? We may have lost the battle for cheap, but we can certainly win the battle for quality and credibility. We believe the UK can be a powerful manufacturing industry once more – we just need to support it and help it grow. We wanted to be part of the exciting revival of treasured historic manufacturing communities and be proof that buying British is better.
We are not interested in making the cheapest mug we can; we are passionate about making the best-made mug possible - a higher quality mug that is here for the long haul. One that has a story of heritage and comes from a history of traditional craftsmanship from The Staffordshire Potteries, who are renowned for specialist expertise in producing quality ceramics since the 17th Century. We feel a deep satisfaction about making our wholesome, well-made mugs from scratch in the original ceramic capital of the world.
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