Heath Ceramics Is Making A Huge Change For Its 70th Anniversary
Think new palettes and a foray into flatware.
The iconic Heath Ceramics is celebrating its 70th anniversary and its 15th under owners Cathy Bailey and Robin Petravic. To celebrate, the Bay Area-based studio is adding a few new items to its collection to bring the classic brand into its next chapter. One fresh addition? Its first ever flatware line. Reflecting what founder Edith Heath might have designed in the 1940s, the collection was made in partnership with the last remaining flatware manufacturer in America, Sherrill Manufacturing. Another new update? An expansion of the Coupe dinnerware line with 10 new hues in its palette.
“As an American manufacturer, we want to support others so they can preserve their craftsmanship and history," says co-owner Cathy Bailey. "And also as a design-led company, we know that our ability to design products beyond dinnerware and tile will help us achieve that vision, using design to keep moving forward as we also preserve our and other makers' legacies. Of course on a literal level, flatware is the next natural extension from the dishes we make. We’ve established ourselves as resource for all things tabletop, but now we are excited to contribute even more to the design of the produces we sell in each category."
While the flatware line is something brand new to the Heath portfolio, the Coupe collection has been at the company since the beginning. "15 years ago when we bought Heath, the process of taking a hard look at the glaze palette for Coupe and being thoughtful about new introductions enabled Heath's Coupe dinnerware to become recognized again as a classic design that could also feel contemporary," explains Bailey. "We choose the challenge of offering a glaze for at least 10 years (when possible) so that our customers can build or replace their collections over time. While we’ve added a few glazes between now and then, we realized it had been a long time since we looked at the palette holistically, so we felt ready for the task."
"The colors emerged from glaze explorations from our archive of glaze tests and recent projects," elaborates Bailey. "While we are always looking out into the world for inspiration, we weren't looking at trends for this project, since dinnerware should last for so much longer than a color trend."
"Looking hard at our current palette and assortment of offerings helped us identify some glazes we were ready to let go," she says. "Those gaps in the palette helped narrow our exploration, since we wanted to have something for each of our customers to mix in with whatever dinnerware they already have.”
With a brand so iconic, change can feel big. But Heath has made sure that it is modernizing its selection with a great respect for the past. "This new palette represents our path forward because it builds upon our legacy of design and manufacturing, while continuing to evolve and consider our relevancy today," shares Bailey. "The new colors don't radically change the look of the Coupe collection, they add depth and shine a light on what is already there. This represents our ongoing commitment to the core of our business and brand as we continue to pursue creative projects further afield, too.”
The flatware line is now available at Heath Ceramics and the new glazes will launch on September 28 in stores and online.