Material Focus: Cork

Posted on July 17, 2015 by THABTO London | 0 Comments

Cork Clock design

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Posted in Cork, Cork Pinboard, Cork Trainers, Cork Vase, Homeware 2015, Isle Crawford, Trends 2015, Vitamin Living

New Designers 2015 - Top Picks

Posted on July 14, 2015 by THABTO London | 0 Comments

Clever wooden notice boards

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Posted in design, furniture, Furniture Design, london, new designers, Product Design

Inside a UK Ceramics Factory

Posted on June 26, 2015 by Steven Smith | 0 Comments

Emma Bridgewater UK Ceramics Factory Visit

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Posted in ceramics, Emma Bridgewater, mugs, Stoke on Trent, uk, UK Manufacturing

Four Unique Gifts for Father’s Day (and a Cheeky 10% Off!)

Posted on June 19, 2015 by THABTO London | 0 Comments

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Four Kitchen Accessories to Stow Away in Your Festival Backpack!

Posted on June 05, 2015 by THABTO London | 0 Comments

It’s June, which to many people means one thing: it’s time for a festival or two! With Glastonbury - arguably the world’s biggest festival - and many others around the corner, keen campers (and not so keen campers) are planning their trips with gusto: which includes not only the fun stuff, like perusing the line up for each day, but also preparing for the ordeal of packing one’s life into a single rucksack.

Keep reading for some of our favourite ‘home hacks’: items from your home and kitchen accessories that could have a multitude of handy uses throughout your stay!

1. Torch. Ah, the faithful household torch: who’d have thought that this would be top of the list? Turns out that a torch is simply essential for any festival. Not only will it allow you to see inside your tent as the night draws in (remember, you’ll have said goodbye to plug sockets and the like), it will also help you find your way back to said tent after a long day and night of partying. It could also prove rather crucial during an unexpected call of nature at 4am…

Courtesy of Black Friction

2. Bin bags. Now, don’t panic, we aren’t clutching at straws here: a pack of bin bags can actually be a lifesaver at a festival. You can separate dirty/muddy clothes from the clean ones (what clean ones…?!) with them; use them as a little ‘entrance mat’ to your tent to store dirty shoes on; sit on them if the ground is cold or wet; and even use them to create a convenient rain shelter with. And a small roll is light, easy to store, and easy to carry. All hail the lowly binbag!

Courtesy of All the Aces

3. Bottle opener. Bringing it back to the world of cool now, ever so slightly – because a bottle opener can look super-stylish whilst serving as a truly useful bit of kit at a festival. Whether you’re planning to imbibe vast quantities of beer or stick with something a little softer, a bottle opener’s uses don’t end there: it can be used for prying off lids, scraping the mud off one’s boot (cleaning thoroughly before using to open a drink, of course), and even as a makeshift blade if you need to slice something.

It can also be a source of amusement. Take our award-winning Subbuteo bottle opener, for instance - with this baby in your pocket, you’ll be a hit at any social event. We wouldn't go anywhere without one!


4. Reusable water bottle. Festivals, it may not surprise you to know, can end up costing major bucks; and one thing you really don’t want to be shelling out for all the time is a bottle of water. So grab that canister from the back of your cupboard and shove it in your rucksack now: your purse and general levels of hydration will thank you, as will the environment.

Courtesy of Wine Meg Up

Whatever festival you end up at, we hope you have a brilliant time! Feel free to share any pictures of your antics (particularly if these involve unusual uses of household items!) with us on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus.


Posted in award winner, bottle opener, festivals, home hacks, kitchen accessories

Lift Your Spirits With Our Unmissable Mood Mugs – Come Rain or Shine!

Posted on May 29, 2015 by THABTO London | 0 Comments

It’s nearly June! Which means it’s nearly officially summer! Which means it’s set to rain all weekend here in the UK!

…Oh. Darn.

Well, when you live in Blighty, you soon get used to the idea that the weather is unpredictable at best – meaning that you can enjoy a scorching barbeque in late autumn, spring-like showers in winter and even a cosy weekend in by the fire during the height of summer.

We don’t know about you, but May was pretty busy for us (what with bank holiday festivities and all); and with the weather set to turn nasty, a chilled-out weekend might be just the ticket right about now. And what would a chilled weekend be without a nice cuppa? Fortunately, whatever your preference might be – a steaming Earl Grey, a strong builder’s tea, a lovely latte or even a heavenly hot choc – and whatever mood you’re in, we’ve got a mug to suit…

Introducing our ever-popular Mood Mugs: a collection that mingles fun with function (and plenty of style).

Like everything in THABTO’s collection of home accessories, our mugs have been carefully designed for life. THABTO's range of Mood Mugs are all hand made from high-quality, foodsafe porcelain, and include a ‘double wall’; this handy feature increases insulation, meaning that whilst your drink remains piping hot, the outside of the mug is cool to the touch. Scalded hands (and - as a result - spilt drinks) will be a thing of the past!

Thanks to the clever design, handles are not necessary, creating a streamlined, modern appearance. And, best of all, there are five funky options to choose from – we know people who have made it their business to collect them all (we heartily approve):


Happy as Larry. 

A smiley little sucker that is sure to brighten your day.

 Seriously Sleepy.

A dozy dreamboat that would be perfect for that night-time cup of cocoa.

Monstrously Moody.

A piece of porcelain that takes no prisoners: the imbibing equivalent of a ‘do not disturb’ sign, if you will.

Cheeky Chappie. 

A flirty flagon that is sure to entice friends (and maybe even strangers!) to chink cups with you.

Severely Stressed.

A comical cup with a tense twist. Simply superb for chugging caffeine-heavy drinks when pressure is mounting.

Within our emotional collection there is a mug for every occasion; so whether you fancy ordering all five or whether you'd prefer to pick a firm favourite, what are you waiting for? Get the kettle on and get ordering!


Posted on May 22, 2015 by THABTO London | 0 Comments

This week we’ve got adverts on the brain: partly because of working on our own campaign for THABTO’s exciting new collection; partly because there are some brilliantly inventive advertisements floating about at present; and partly because this week spelled the end of the iconic TV series, Mad Men, which portrayed the lives of ad execs working on Madison Avenue (the beating heart of the industry during the 1960s and 1970s).

We’ve found ourselves asking: what is it that makes a great ad? How do they get it right? Whilst we’re not advertising experts, we do know a thing or two about design; so we thought we’d share a few of our favourites with you – all of which are unique gifts in their own right!

1. Penguin Books: Audiobooks, 2014.

We love this clever, eye-catching print advert, developed by McCann Erickson India for Penguin Books.

There are three adverts in this campaign, each featuring a different author – Oscar Wilde, Mark Twain and of course William Shakespeare (pictured) – ingeniously depicted as a pair of headphones. The mouths of the authors are open, as if they are speaking directly to their listeners via the audiobook medium. The striking but subtle colour scheme and plentiful use of neutral space enhances the inviting, expressive feel.

If that visual doesn't make viewers want to immerse themselves into an audiobook, we don’t know what would!

2. Volkswagen: Adaptive Cruise Control, 2015.

The only video on our list, but a memorable one.

This advert, produced by DDB Spain, promotes Volkswagen’s latest innovation in technology: an adaptive cruise control system, which includes all the features of a traditional ‘cruise’ with the added bonus of keeping your vehicle a safe distance from the one in front.

The concept of Volkswagen's whizzy new technology expands throughout the advert, with a clever ideological twist: the slogan ‘keep a friendly distance’ is utilised not just in the context of cars, but also in highlighting the negative ‘closeness’ and competitiveness of big brands such as McDonald’s and Burger King, who are shown to be fighting – quite literally – over the same patch.

The cultural significance of this advert and the accessible concept allows the ACC feature to shine whilst positioning Volkswagen as an empathetic, down-to-earth, consumer-friendly brand.

3. Woodstock Ventures: Woodstock Music & Art Fair, 1969.

What can we say about this? An icon of print design if ever there was one: a perfect embodiment of the peaceful rebellion that the Woodstock festival came to symbolise. The dove perching on the guitar handle, the riot of bright primary colours, the clear-to-read but almost subversive, not quite regular font, combine with stunning effect. Arnold Skolnick’s poster resonates deeply thanks to its unique, striking style – a style that has been much imitated since but never successfully duplicated.

What’s your favourite advert? We’ve covered a few explosive concepts but there are some nostalgic adverts that we haven’t touched on – what about the infamous ‘I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke’ advert from Coca Cola? What about the Milk Tray Man?! Feel free to share your reminiscences with us on social media – we’d love to hear from you on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus.     

Posted in adverts, design, mad men, unique gifts

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