Designer Crisp & Dene secures Aga deal in partnership with Norwich textiles manufacturer
- Credit: copyright ARCHANT 2017
Business is hotting up for a Suffolk designer after securing a contract with traditional British cooker company Aga.
Will Crisp, of designers Crisp & Dene, pitched a new range of textile and homeware products to the firm alongside his Norwich-based manufacturer and Aga supplier the British Textile Company.
Named Best In Show, the range includes tea towels, aprons, oven mitts, place mats, pot grabs and signature Aga gauntlets.
The British Textile Company and its owners ICTC secured their first licensing agreement with Aga to sell the products through local stockists rather than just Aga Cookshops.
Ruth Cutter, managing director of £3m-turnover manufacturer ICTC, said the deal would bring in excess of 10,000 units through the factory in the next two months – accounting for more than half its monthly production target.
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'As the range gets more popular, we hope production will double in the next year,' she said.
Mr Crisp and Ms Cutter worked together on the Best in Show designs – inspired by Mr Crisp's family life in Norfolk – and on the pitch to Aga.
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The range was produced simultaneously with the Aga Utility Textiles range – less showy products featuring a signature stripe.
Ms Cutter said: 'We saw there was a market there as people know and love the brand. We have so many customers who want to sell Aga's products.
'The British Textile Company has been manufacturing for Aga for over 20 years and this licence opportunity was too good to miss.'
Mr Crisp, who founded his business in Felixstowe in 2012, said it was a 'huge compliment' to be chosen as an Aga designer.
'Being associated with Aga is sensational – it represents all the things that Crisp & Dene as a brand strive for,' he said.
'There are a lot of textiles on the market that are on-trend and look good, but that is not what it is about for me.
'We are interested in traditional textiles: things that are not fancy, but have longevity.
'These products become part of your everyday life – they have to be honest and unchallenging.'
Mr Crisp said the design of his textile products stemmed from 'functionality'.
'There is no point in putting decoration on something if it is going to detract from the performance,' he said.
Established 30 years ago in Duke Street, Norwich as C'est Ca!, the rebranded British Textile Company was bought by manufacturer ICTC on the city's Sweet Briar Industrial Estate in 2004.
Its 12-strong team produces textiles for companies including Aga, with which it has worked for 20 years manufacturing products for sale in Aga Cookshops.
Will Crisp has been working with the British Textile Company for around three years, during which time it has manufactured two other Crisp & Dene product ranges.
The pattern printing for Crisp & Dene's textile ranges is also done in Norwich, at Screen Art in St Augustines Street.
Norfolk-born Mr Crisp said he welcomed the opportunity to work with companies in his home county.
'The factory is a great resource to have in Norwich. The city has such a rich history of textile-making and it is great that that tradition is carrying on.'