Manchester School Of Art

Class of 2018

Once again Manchester School Of Art provided an excellent Degree show. Bringing together Product Design, Fine Art, Fashion, Art Direction, Graphic Design, Furniture Design, Interactive Arts in a dynamic body of work. Always visionary + ambitious + experimental the students year on year produce cutting edge work in a cutting edge city. Make sure you pencil it into your diaries for next year to see the next generation of creatives before the rest of the world does, its that good! 


cup + cloth is born

De Young Museum San Francisco.

De Young Museum San Francisco.

Our Story

When Habitat finally closed its Manchester doors in 2011 it was a sad day for all the interior obsessed masses. It was one of the cities last remaining interior stores, having previously lost Heals and Skandium in Selfridges years before. The suburbs were well represented with great interior independents putting the city centre to shame. Hence this was the driving force for us to set up our online store Cup + Cloth. Deciding to start a store on line as opposed to a bricks and mortar shop to reach out to a wider audience (pop ups may be a future project). We are very excited about this new venture we're embarking on and hope you like what we bring to you!

I have always shared an affinity with Manchester, starting my design career as a clothes designer in the city, setting up the independent label Britain with a colleague in the 1980's . Enjoying Manchester during one of its greatest fashion and club scenes was amazing and to be involved amongst that entrepreneurial movement was a special time to behold. Unfortunately the Manchester bomb hit in the late 90's which sadly the business never recovered ( that's another story )

However on the rebound I set up another label called Trip Fontaine, it was extremely successful and provided me with a couple of very exciting years making and customising T-shirts and jeans for great independents around the UK and USA, gaining great press coverage whilst selling my clothes to fashion editors and iconic folk of the time. All this whilst I embarked on a degree course studying Printed Textiles at Manchester school of Art . Gaining a career in Textile Design, working in one of the countries last remaining Silk Mills in Macclesfield. Making 'things' has never left me, along with visiting craft events like the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Show in Manchester and Origins in London , has provided a constant source of inspiration. I was lucky to visit San Francisco last year, a vibrant, cultural mecca, full of small + independent designer + maker stores, established by people doing what they love. On my return I knew I wanted to create something equally inspiring and Cup + Cloth was born.

Creative mood boards in the Cup + Cloth headquarters.

Creative mood boards in the Cup + Cloth headquarters.

Our aim is to buy, whenever possible, from Northern independent designers + makers and to support our local creators. Sourcing new talent from the nearby Universities at the degree shows is always our first port of call. The excitement of seeking out new talent and inspirational wares is what Cup + Cloth is about. We have discovered wonderful designer goods from visiting these shows. The rest of the UK will also be explored to seek out new finds, to join the carefully curated selection of home produced goods and are categorised in the Made section of the store.


Joe Hartley

Amongst our Northern designer + makers, we would like to introduce to you Joe Hartley and his wonderfully pure ceramics produced from his Manchester studio. He graduated from MMU in 2012 and went on to win the prestigious New Designer of the year, his feet have not touched the floor since.  When Joe isn’t throwing beautifully turned vessels you will find him with the arts based collective Makers Dozen and project managing the Pilcrow Pub project

Cup + Cloth is honoured to work with such a talented guy, his range of sublime and honest ceramics can be found in our MADE section of the store.


Joe Hartley in his studio. Photo courtesy of Rob Evens.

Joe Hartley in his studio. Photo courtesy of Rob Evens.