Illustrating and Manufacturing The Yorkshire Shepherdess Mug

by Anita Bowerman October 27, 2020 0 Comments

Illustrating and Manufacturing The Yorkshire Shepherdess Mug

I love to combine my experience of buying and working with manufacturers to create new products with illustration, art and design. Amanda Owen, The Yorkshire Shepherdess and I have been in touch for a number of years after I contacted her to feature on one of my Christmas Cards, I illustrate for the Yorkshire Air Ambulance.

Amanda and I thought of creating a quality fine bone china mug featuring her ancient Hay Meadows. I thus set about to illustrate Amanda, her children, wildlife and farm animals at her farm in Ravenseat. We both wanted to source a very English manufacturer to produce a high-quality mug.

Having visited and discussed our requirements with the directors of Duchess China 1888 pottery in Stoke-on-Trent, the epicentre of the potteries for centuries I knew I had found our supplier and was confident they would produce an excellent product.

So, the illustration complete, the process of manufacturing commenced. The first job was to create transfers from my illustration which involved about 10 layers of colour laid one on top of the other for a silk screen print done by a skilled master printer. After several weeks we finally had our product.

Amanda then served tea out of some of the mugs and sold they directly to walkers who visit her Ravenseat farm, which is halfway on the Coast to Coast walk. Then came Coronavirus and we were all locked down.

The Channel 5 programme our Yorkshire Farm featuring Amanda Owen, the Yorkshire Shepherdess and her family on Channel 5 has been a huge hit on our TV screens when it was aired recently. During one episode, the camera honed in on Raven, Amanda’s eldest child who had just gone to University. She was holding one of the mugs as the interviewer asked her if she was missing home and her eyes welled up with tears. The camera held the pose for a while…. Amanda then started to get requests flooding in from viewers to buy the mug. Another order from Duchess was needed.

So, Amanda and I had the pleasure of visiting the Duchess China last week and were showed around the factory which was truly fascinating seeing the 10 processes involved in ‘hand making’ the mugs by skilled craftspeople.

Amanda said “It was a real privilege to be invited to Duchess China factory in Stoke-on-Trent and to see first-hand the process that goes into making a fine bone China mug. The attention to detail and skill involved in producing the mug is phenomenal. It was wonderful to see quality China pottery being manufactured here in Britain and I am thrilled to be able to support them by buying British.

Anita has illustrated a beautiful design featuring my family and animals at home in the hay meadows. She manages to capture all the details so intricately, from my favourite smock coat to the backdrop, animals, flowers and even my children.

The mugs are very special, make a pretty gift and are not only collectors’ pieces but being fine bone china also make a jolly decent cup of tea.”

The mug has received so much publicity and has so far been featured in The Yorkshire Post

Mugs available from my website here £18 each plus £2 postage. Take a look



Anita Bowerman
Anita Bowerman

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