Jabula · The Joy of Living with Ardmore

By Louise Irvine

Jabula means to be joyful in Zulu. It is also the name of Ardmore’s new wallpaper collection developed in collaboration with Cole & Son of London. The Ardmore Design team continues to reimagine motifs from their iconic ceramic art to transform our living spaces with the beauty of the natural world rooted in African style and culture. Ardmore’s luxury lifestyle products, including sofas, scatter cushions, and table linens, now form part of the curated design collection celebrating Jabula · The Joy of Living with Ardmore Ceramic Art & Design until December 31, 2022.

Safari for the Soul

Ardmore Ceramic Art had humble beginnings on a remote farm in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa. The studio was founded in 1985 by Fée Halsted who began teaching local people how to create unique ceramic art. The fame of the developing studio spread internationally as collectors discovered the wit and whimsy of Ardmore ceramics which can be experienced in the WMODA Safari for the Soul gallery. Ardmore began experimenting with fabric design in 2010 and launched the Qalakabusha sofa, meaning “new beginnings”.

Wearable Art

The success of Ardmore’s fantastical furniture and fabrics heralded an exciting new design direction for the ceramic art studio. The new Ardmore Design Studio gained international recognition in 2013 following their collaboration with Hermès, the luxury French brand. Talented Ardmore artists, including Sidney Nyabeze and Abel Mohloakoana, worked under the guidance of Fèe’s eldest daughter, Catherine Berning, to create a stunning range of silk scarves. Ardmore’s latest sensational silk art collection featuring the Sabie Kings is now produced under their own brand.

Pottery to Pillows to Poufs

Ardmore’s graphic designers have also translated the studio’s lush patterns of African fauna and flora into a vibrant range of furnishing fabrics and pillow designs in luxurious silk, velvet, and cotton, as well as outdoor fabrics for the Solaris collection. Interior designers can create their own safari adventures with curtains and furniture, or they can choose from the stunning love seats, benches, and poufs in the Sabie collection sold at the WMODA shop.

Entertaining with Ardmore

The Ardmore tabletop collection features tablecloths, runners, and napkins for formal dining as well as tea towels, melamine place mats, and coasters for casual entertaining. The latest Sabie collection of textiles was inspired by Fèe Halsted’s vacation in the Kruger National Park where the bush is lush, thick with foliage and abundant in wildlife. Fèe described her magical trip as a “never-ending tapestry of camouflaged beasts, where light, sound, movement and color shift and change”. Her fertile imagination resulted in three designs namely Sabie Forest, Camp Critters and King Cheetah which are available to order in several styles and colors through the WMODA museum shop. All sales benefit the educational programs at WMODA which is a 501c3 not-for-profit museum.

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