Illustrator Amy Brown has always loved nature and interiors and hoped to find a way to combine all of these. So came about Mister Berwyn, where Amy's characters wheel, jump and scurry across ceramics, cushions, aprons, lampshades, oven mitts and more. All items are made across the UK and designed locally by Amy at her Cardiff studio in the company of her dogs Peggy and Burt.
What does your business offer?
Designs to be enjoyed. Good quality, British made products that stand out.
Who's behind the business and what are your values?
Me. I'm the designer and founder.
A key value of the business along with great design is making sure everything is carefully sourced and made in the UK.
Home is a special place and I want to create pieces that people will treasure for a long time. Things that are special to them.
I love animals. I wanted to be a vet but I was dreadful at science! I couldn't treat them, so I draw them.
Why would you consider yourself to be sustainable?
Every item is UK made. That cuts down on imports and helps support industries that otherwise wouldn't exist anymore.
Increasingly people want to know where things come from. There's a shift. It's an exciting time to be making things in Britain.
Tell me about a project you're proud of.
I'm mostly proud that I've kept going. You face so many knock backs and quiet weeks after being really busy that the main achievement has to be staying focused.
What is your favourite item?
It's probably the circus cushion and the mole. That's one of the best sellers.
At the beginning I thought I shouldn't create a design with a mole in it. I didn't know if people would like it. It's good to see he's doing well.
Then there's the monkey on the unicycle... the cup and saucer... It's like picking your favourite child! The velvet cushions...
I wouldn't put out anything I wouldn't use myself. I'm really pleased with the placemats - the ones with the animal heads.
How has your business changed and learnt over time?
It's probably me that's changed. I'm a bit more clued up now and the business is stronger because of it.
The business is growing and I'm looking at more designs and product ranges. I'm working on a larger scale with bigger retailers. A lot of the suppliers are the same. It's good to keep up those relationships.
I've learnt to be proud of being different. When I launched the products at my first trade show, I felt like they were the only colourful ones there. Everything else was quite monochrome at the time. It was quite unnerving and it's hard to not question your work when you're in a situation like that.
I don't let it bother me now. Rightly or wrongly, I don't follow trends. It gives products much more longevity.
What's your local tip for the home?
Just buy what you like.
We moved into our new home and had been collecting things for years before that. It was nice to get them out of their boxes. We have things from our travels... a few Danish pieces... Just create a collection of things that resonate with you.
That said, most of our things have to be a certain height to keep the dog's off!
What customers say:
"I received my Nocturnal Cushion yesterday, and I had to let you know that I absolutely love it. It is quirky and beautiful at the same time."
"This plate is the most fantastic in the history of the world ever! Absolutely beautiful mole plate, superb design and perfect for daily use. No mole fancier should be without this item!"
"I can't wait to give this teapot to my husband. It is really gorgeous. It looked lovely on the screen, but in person is even lovelier. The teacups are precious and what a great gift this is going to be. Thank you again."
"I ordered the Owl plate for my sister-in-law's 18th birthday, as she's obsessed with owls. It came and was amazing quality and beautifully packaged. That gift made her birthday extra special. Will definitely be shopping with Mister Berwyn again. There's nothing else like it around."