Cole and Son was founded in 1875 by John Perry, son of a Cambridgeshire merchant. In those days the company was situated in Islington, north London, an area famous for the 190 hand block printing companies working there in the 18th and 19th centuries. Throughout the 19th century Cole and Son printed for all the large well-known companies of the time including Jeffrey & Co, Sanderson and Shand Kydd. In addition to high quality block printing, the company was renowned for supplying beautiful stripes and jaspes.
In 1949, Cole’s Design Director created one of the first screen print studios in Europe in response to the revolutionary new Contemporary design movement which gave birth to the wild wallpaper designs of the 1950s and 1960s.
Today, they utilise the latest technology in digital printing to produce large-scale digital designs and combines the latest production methods with traditional printing techniques to produce reproductions of historic designs. Flock printing, revived by Cole & Son’s original founder John Perry in the 1870’s, is a process that replicates cut velvet on wallpaper. Cole and Son continue to offer flocking on bespoke orders. This method is where specialist glue is applied to the design and flock fibres are applied to the surface, giving a luxurious textured finish.
Their newest collection Ardmore is a charming and stylish new range of wallpapers and borders in collaboration with Ardmore Ceramic Art. It celebrates African traditions and culture. Drawing inspiration from Ardmore’s colourful and quirky ceramics the collection explores Africa’s exotic flora and majestic fauna. From rare birds to big cats, elephants, rhinos and mischievous monkeys; as well as the beautiful patterns of Zulu beadwork and woven basket ware.
Colour palettes are drawn from the natural landscape: from the chalky, ochred desert plains and sun-bleached shimmering outcrops to the vibrant fresh greens of water-kissed rainforests and exotic colourings of native flora and fauna. The result, a strikingly sophisticated collection of wallpapers that includes soft and subtle explorations of the majestic landscape as well as colourful creations capturing the vibrancy of traditional African culture.