t h e f o u n d e r s
e l i z a b e t h
Wife to my soulmate and 24/7 mama of boys, first. Designer, illustrator and creative spirit, second.
Our children are our world and we aim to give them a life of imagination and creativity in all we do. Our mornings are usually filled with glue and glitter, a paintbrush in one hand and embroidery threads in the other, baking, cooking and floury faces, a three year old learning to draw and cook, and a slightly smaller toddler copying everything his big brother does. And the rest of the day is spent as much as possible outdoors, playing games, letting them run wild and helping them learn.
After bath and supper time, once they're tucked up in bed and dreaming, we creep into our studio for the candlelight shift! I feel so blessed to do what I love alongside the people I love everyday. It's a gift I never take for granted.
j a m e s
I’d always been a sportsman, so it’s unsurprising I ended up playing rugby professionally, but I never believed I could do anything else. Growing up I buried myself in sport to avoid life. When I met my wife, everything changed. I knew happiness for the first time, and the world seemed suddenly full of possibility. As an artist and creative spirit, she’s made every day an adventure for our boys and I’ve followed along just as helplessly, loving every bit. First it was stories to send them to sleep at night. We made them up together as she scribbled out illustrations. Next we bought a sewing machine and made a blanket sewn with soldiers to keep them safe at night. Then it was making our own candles as gifts for friends.
Now, outside of the rugby, we spend our mornings and evenings playing, creating, cooking and baking with our boys. Life doesn't stop and the day feels wonderfully full. For our foodie blog, head over to Butter Wouldn’t Melt - a space for all our experiments indoors and out.
o u r m i s s i o n
In a world as busy as ours is now, we're all about the tiny moments. The ones that disappear too fast, like water through cupped hands. The ones worth savouring so you don't wonder why you missed the magic when it's just a little memory echoing in your head.
Hearing our little ones' first gurgles, their simple delight in the world around them and their happy slumber once they could feel the comfort of our fingers wrapped warmly within theirs was a soul stopping reminder to slow down. We wanted more than ever to cherish those moments and really live them. To be there for them in every sense - to be the handholders and the forehead strokers, the arms to rock them to sleep and the tellers of a hundred tales. To focus on the gift we'd been given and the huge responsibility of it all. Because it's all that matters in the end. Living in the moment. Giving them memories. Loving them. And knowing they're happy.
o u r p r o d u c t s + t h e d e s i g n p r o c e s s
We began in a tiny way, wanting to make a few special things for our children. We bought a sewing machine and made a blanket. And when it worked, however 'homemade', we tried a cushion and a crown. We bought a jigsaw and made a toy from wood. We drew castles and knights and dragons for them to colour in, and told stories until my sketchbook pages toppled with storybook illustrations. We treasured seeing their faces full of enthusiasm at the little playthings we made from the box of scraps, the games we played, the stories we told and the pictures we drew. This will always be the sentiment at the very core of all our work as we strive to give our little ones a childhood filled with magic. Creativity and make believe. Games to inspire their imaginations. Toys to love, that last a lifetime and another after that. Things to treasure, and made by hand - with love and care. The memory making days of a magical youth.
Our evenings in the studio are always a special time and I feel unbelievably lucky in having my husband always by my side. Forever enthusiastic, he always puts his whole heart into everything we do and he's the one I rely on for every new idea turning in my mind, especially when things prove a challenge. When I'm not sure I've got the patience to tackle a new instrument or piece of machinery that I've bought and am staring sheepishly at, he's the one pulling out the instruction manual, smiling and saying firmly 'I'll do it for you'. When I think something's not working, he's the one kissing me on the forehead and snatching up my pencil to find the solution. So thank you to my better half: my constant support, my source of laughter every day and, alongside my children, the greatest inspiration for everything I do.
Having begun collaborating with people across the globe, we are proud that even though the finished pieces represent the achievement of many talented craftsmen, every item has been designed together at home in our studio, inspired most often by our children. We've also been lucky to find such incredible partners across the world who have all put their incredible skills and time into perfecting these items, using only the finest quality and, where possible, organic materials. We thank our artisans, for their warmth and humour, and their endless enthusiasm for our ideas and their creations.
We hope our customers will treasure the things they find here and that they bring inspiration and magic into the heart of every child who receives them.
It's what we make them for.
p a c k a g i n g
All Pannacotta orders are packaged carefully by hand, and always with a special opening experience which we feel is so important for the receiver. To share your unwrapping experience, feel free to tag us on Instagram with #pannacottaengland. We place huge priority on the process of choosing environmentally friendly ways of making things and sourcing sustainable packaging for our products, with a strong focus on natural and organic materials.
p h o t o g r a p h y
Most of the photography is done in-house by ourselves. We've also had some beautiful product shots done by a very talented Toronto based photographer.
o u r a r t i s a n s
For more about our wonderful artisans with whom we work across the globe, please visit our handcrafted page.