David Coton was delighted to recently meet with Frank Honald, President and Owner of Henri Studio USA, who had flown in from Chicago to discuss the opportunity of bringing their products back into the UK next year.
Borderstone's impressive range of ornamental stoneware has always proved popular on GardenSite, and partners David Coton and Andrew Hall recently paid a visit to their manufacturing and distribution base in Nottinghamshire.
After being welcomed by Border Stonework Managing Director Tony Hobbs, David and Andrew were introduced to Darren Booth who manages the facility.
To illustrate the impressively large and diverse Borderstone range, over 600 products in total, Darren showed the visitors how items such as classical and modern sculptures, sundials, benches, and patio sets are all hand crafted with meticulous care.
And it's a family effort, as while Darren is keeping the moulds in perfect condition, his son Daniel mixes the raw material that constitutes the very fine cast stone that used in the stoneware's manufacture. Although requiring plenty of muscle power this is a fine art and critical to the final product's integrity.
Daniel is increasingly taking on responsibility for day to day manufacturing but his sister Amy is charged with hand finishing the features. She clearly takes great pride in painting each and every piece so that the completed item is always perfectly decorated.
Oriental ornaments have always proved particularly popular, particularly pagodas and lanterns. Among the products David and Andrew saw being crafted were some of GardenSite's best sellers including the Seven Piece Pagoda, Two Tier Pagoda, Three Tier Pagoda, Four Piece Pagoda and Japanese Garden Bench.
These would be superb enhancements for your garden either as a focal point or centrepiece, whether or not it has an oriental theme, due to the tremendous quality of their design and craftsmanship.
Other pieces such as the charmingly designed Wishing Well Garden Ornament and rustically styled Woodland Garden Furniture Patio Set illustrate the wide variety of Borderstone's product range that has developed over the past thirty years.
At the end of the tour, David Coton commented that he was delighted to have had the opportunity to see the factory at work but more so to meet so many nice people.
“I was amazed with the amount of hard work, skill and pride that goes into each and every piece. This has filled me with even more confidence in recommending such wonderful garden ornaments
We have been selling Borderstone in our garden centre and online for many years, it's a privilege to stock such great products and marvellous to see this range remains crafted by hand in the UK".
There's no doubt that television provides gardeners with inspiration, sound advice and good ideas, that's why we're all looking forward to new programmes and the return of old favourites during 2020.
Sustainability and a growing awareness of wildlife are two of the key gardening trends identified by the Royal Horticultural Society for 2020, with gardeners in a position where they can make a substantial impact regarding environmental issues.
Gardening is such a popular activity with interest only increasing over recent years that the magazine rack in your local newsagent or supermarket is packed with publications offering inspiration and practical advice.
Although the days are short and the view from our Garden Centre is dull and overcast, David Coton suggests various jobs that can be done in the garden during the month of January.