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A is for Ashbee

Taking the alphabet bricks designed by C.R Ashbee and made by Alex Miller around 1914, we explore our collections in a different way.

The bricks were made around 1914 for Mary, Ashbee’s eldest child.

B is for Blacksmiths

This fire screen was made in wrought iron and copper by the Guild blacksmiths Bill Thornton and Charley Downer in about 1905. They were part of the Guild in both London and Chipping Campden, then continued the smithy until the outbreak of World War II. Despite working together for so long they never really got on and were notoriously grumpy.

E is for Enamel
Ashbee’s designs in silver often used decorative enamel details to enhance and emphasise the form of boxes and suchlike. William Mark whose enamelwork decorates the lid of this box was Australian by birth and joined the Guild in 1900.
O is for Osborn
Inspired by Mahatma Gandhi Mary Osborn wanted to revive spiritual values through craftwork, first in London’s East End and then in the Cotswolds where she was instrumental in the creation of the Stanton Guildhouse. These photographs from the early 1960s show her project with the children of Laverton in Worcestershire, gathering sheep’s wool, dyeing, spinning and knitting.