Exquisite patterns from the V&A walls: The Cole Collection


Exquisite patterns from the V&A walls: The Cole Collection

Take a seat and enjoy the style and splendour of the V&A’s Refreshment Rooms with this new tableware of diverse patterns from the V&A walls. The Cole Collection is inspired by the three luxurious dining areas in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

The origins of these magnificent rooms date back to the world’s first museum restaurant: the first Refreshment Room which was introduced in the V&A in 1856. The museum’s founding director, Henry Cole, introduced this restaurant to encourage the public to come and enjoy culture while catering to their needs for a comforting cup of tea and a warming snack, much needed after a long day exploring the V&A halls and all its unique artefacts.

Today’s three rooms are named the Poynter, Gamble and Morris rooms, after the artists who worked on them, and are decorated just as exquisitely as any other treasure to be found in the museum. Each room is an ambitious scheme of decoration, intertwining a variety of cultural inspirations symphonized on a captivating canvas from the V&A floors to the majestic ceilings over museumgoers ready for an energizing tea break.

The Cole Collection captures the intricacy and splendour of the Refreshment Rooms, pulling out decorative details from each room and painting them across mix and match fine china pieces.

Elegant blue and white gives this collection a coordinated look while patterns are eclectic and mixed so individual combinations can be explored on the table. A heavy focus on Dutch blue gives a bold look and is inspired by the style of the Poynter Room: the blue ceramic tiles used in this room were painted by female students, which was an unusual opportunity to be commissioned to women at the time.

Patterns fuse together floral arabesques, geometric patterns and olive boughs found in the Morris Room, historically a popular rendezvous spot for acclaimed artists to take lunch together. Like the Gamble Room - described as an expanse of colourful ceramic and glass - this collection has been created to impress for breath-taking dining experiences. The Cole Collection tableware is crafted in durable fine china to make it suited for everyday brunches, lunches and dinners that will bring the cultural inspiration of the V&A to every dining experience in the home.

V&A creates beautifully designed products using historic artwork from the extensive Victoria and Albert Museum archives. The collections are inspired by the iconic, the exquisite and the unique artefacts found in this heritage institution for timeless pieces that can be enjoyed, displayed and treasured in the home.

View the collection here.