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Monday 13 July 2020

Found in the Orleans House Gallery Shop!

Learn more about the artists, makers and producers that are featured in our gallery shop. This week, we look at the Octagon Room mug that is a mainstay in the gallery shop.

The Octagon Room mug – celebrating the tercentenary and renovation of James Gibbs’ Octagon Room

This stylish bone china coffee mug was designed exclusively for the new gallery shop when it opened in 2018. A perfect gift or souvenir, some of the country’s leading designers and manufacturers had a hand in its production. 

The design brief was to reflect the opulent blue and gold scheme of the Octagon interior, along with the baroque scrollwork produced in the early C18th by the Swiss stuccatori (plasterers), Artari and Bagutti, working under architect James Gibbs. 

Rosie Simmons of 3cubed was commissioned to design the mug. Rosie also styles and produces all ceramic products for cutting-edge design company, Timorous Beasties. 

The mug was then manufactured by McLaggan Smith Mugs Ltd. an award-winning company based in Scotland, who are market leaders in the printing and decoration of bespoke china mugs... for companies such as the National Gallery, Tate and National Trust.  

It was produced in bone chinawhich is much finer than standard earthenware, or even porcelain, making it much nicer to drink from. It also tends to be stronger and more hard-wearing. The body of bone china is whiter, which makes the printed colours brighter and sharper. 

The design was screen printed and hand-applied onto the mugs, before being fired for a second time. The colours were Pantone-matched to the Octagon blue and an antique gold was chosen to represent the gilding. They are dishwasher-proof. Purchased in sets of six, they make an ideal gift for couples who marry in the Octagon Room – a perfect reminder of a special day in a stunning location.