With Winter Solstice upon us, we take every opportunity to enjoy the wintery wonderland as a source for new inspiration. A steady flow of ideas come from reflecting on this season, taking cues from nature for new evergreen trees, frosty decorative objects, and essentials to gather around the table. We transform what we see and experience into new glass objects to bring home and enjoy everyday. Our handcrafted glass is magical as it starts as a molten material that takes it’s form from the finesse and skill of the master glassblowers.
The organic shaped Burlington Collection’s plates and bowls have unique reactive effects in the glazing that are both casual and elegant. It can be paired with any of our glassware and flatware lines, but here we have it featured with our new Benson Tumbler and Warren Flatware.
The Benson tumbler evolved from the geometric design concept originating with the martini glass and it is universally useful for a variety of occasions. The Spruce tree is now offered in a new mini version that is a great gift or a nice addition to any beloved glass forest. Building upon our natural theme the potters created a great line of marbled clay vessels that are very unique centerpiece bowls and vases called Beachstone.
The new warren flatware is inspired by a teardrop shape, similar to the lamp in our lighting line. The streamlined flatware is 18/10 stainless steel that is cast and forged by skilled craftsman. Partnering with Bertozzi, we created new linen patterns for this winter. Our favorite is the naturally beautiful Ponderosa design with oversized pine needles in both a napkin and a runner. Another new addition is the shape of our classic evergreen trees as a beeswax candle in ivory, red and green. Lastly, a useful item for entertaining is the elemental Soapstone Chiller that can keep you wine cool or double as a mini ice bucket. Consider some of these new additions as part of your holiday celebrations as we officially head into winter.
We are pleased to be serving our devoted customers and connecting with new ones, in the Philadelphia area with our 11th store bringing us into the region with a fresh new approach. Following on the heels of opening our Chestnut Hill Store, just over a year ago, we completed the interior construction of our new Ardmore store, just in time for the holiday Black Friday shopping rush. To make this go from concept to reality, we had an incredible team that made the opening of the store possible, with staff contributing from every department in the company. Our company is united by a culture that is dedicated to providing a “wow” shopping experience.
Quote from our press release;
“The Ardmore store will invite customers to explore—or perhaps discover for the first time—our glass and pottery collections,” said James Murray, Senior Vice President of Product Development + Design. “The shop’s warm, contemporary interior and displays take a cue from our flagship location in Vermont; by referencing that historic building and vibrant makerspace, we hope to bring the spirit of handcraftsmanship to our newest location.”
Deciding on the best location is key, and Jay Benson, our CEO, researched and evaluated the marketplace to find Ardmore to be an optimal destination.
The design process started with imagining the type of space and feeling that takes cues from the experience of the Mill in Quechee, Vermont. We developed a material selection of complimentary, beautiful, real materials, that include walnut shelves, white oak flooring, wrought steel, walnut fixtures, and clay inspired earthy paint tones, that are used throughout the main retail floor.
Illumination is a key element to showing the characteristics of our iconic glass products, so we employed built-in LED lighting technology into all our fixed shelving. To really make our evergreen trees glow, we built the lighting into the surface of the shelves so trees are illuminated from underneath. The overall concept of the store was then rendered to capture our fresh aesthetic, that appeals to the customer that looks for our humanistic approach to design.
We utilized our retired wood molds from blowing glass, to create a textural wrap around our main counter. Neil Cockwill, Director of Forms, carefully selected and collaged the molds together, at our facility in Windsor, Vermont. We also feature our vine chandelier over the cash wrap counter as a focal point. We contracted Andrew Pearce to build a series of walnut and steel furniture, for us to use in cross merchandising statements.
The store design is featuring a separate studio space, in the back, that highlights our handcrafted pendants and lamps, which makes it easier for interior designers and customers to make buying decisions from our lighting collection. Our contractors worked quickly to demise the space, and go through the process of re-configuring it to suit our needs. They created the lighting studio out of a prior stock room by taking down walls, and rebuilding it into a useful space. The shelving around the store was custom built for us and they house all of our core products, delineated by their category.
Kathy Marshall, Creative Integration Manager, on the planogram:
“The product assortment for Ardmore is curated to include top performers and new designs, based on the store size. Within this framework, we assign categories of product to specific fixed shelves and dynamic displays, as well as carefully considering the placement of the product to make shopping easy.”
A few weeks before the store opening, a group of us visited the store location as the construction had begun to check on progress and interview candidates to work at the store.
Jen Smith, our new VP of Retail, started in July 2019, joined us after a long tenure at Crate & Barrel, rallied the retail team for an incredibly organized and quick opening.
“We had so much fun opening the Ardmore store – it was a fast and furious process! In just 3 days, we unloaded and unpacked 16 pallets of product and set the displays. It was a small, but mighty team! Opening in the busy holiday season meant that everyone had to be flexible and efficient.”
“Huge shout-outs to: Stephanie and Amanda, our warehouse managers, and the shipping team at our Oakland, MD facility, John and Josey, who delivered the product the moment we got the green light. Jackie, Retail Operations Project Manager, who coordinated all of the scheduling, travel, logistics and supplies for the store. Jeff, Field Visual Merchandising Manager, who set up the store visuals while training the new staff every step of the way. James and Kathy, who came up with the vision for the store and created a detailed and thorough planogram for execution. And our planning team who pulled the product from our warehouse to merchandise during the busiest time of the year!”
“Michael, the store manager, and Emily, full-time sales, had come up to Vermont for orientation, so they were immersed in the Simon Pearce culture, the Vermont way of life, and have a whole new appreciation for the artisans who create our product. They, along with our part-time sales associate, Colleen, have welcomed returning customers who remember our brand from Brandywine, and introduced new customers to Simon Pearce.”
From our founder, Simon Pearce:
“I started making glass because of the human quality you find in real handmade glass. One of the best ways to share that experience is to put the product directly into the hands of our customers. Opening a location in Philadelphia gives us the opportunity to better share our story with an important market for us.”
Building upon the much loved Echo Lake design, that is inspired by the ice formations occuring over the waterfall at the Mill, we attempted the same technique on a few tree shapes and were excited about the result.
These eye catching wintery trees are the perfect balance of classic & contemporary design and make a statement for any centerpiece. The perfectly imperfect strands of molten glass are finely wrapped around each tree form to create this shimmering effect.
Celebrate the season, by creating a cluster or even a forest of mixed trees, for a grand tablescape, or mantle display that will be a delight through the winter months.
We are pleased to open our 10th store today in our new Chestnut Hill, MA location. This store opening was made possible by the collaboration of key people with many different specialties, here at Simon Pearce. With this essential teamwork across departments, we have set a new bar for ourselves with this beautiful retail experience.
The store reflects a new direction of design, that takes people on a journey to discover a unique connection to us through glass and pottery. Our main intention of the store design, is to welcome the customers to explore the world of handcrafted excellence, and bring the essence of the Vermont landscape that inspires us to Chestnut Hill.
Overall, the store has a warm natural contemporary feel, with beautiful real materials of solid wood, wrought steel and earthy tones that are used throughout the main retail floor. It appeals to the customer that appreciates a humanistic approach to design, with a blend of our two important core concepts: exquisite iconic products and simple practicality to be enjoyed everyday. The product presentations are intended to inspire with dynamic displays and make shopping easy by categories. The planning and product development teams mapped out the store with focused planograms.
A copper-top bar, similar to the large one we have in our flagship Mill will highlight our barware, and connect back to Vermont. We are featuring a pair of our recently launched vine chandeliers that make a focal point in the center of the store. They show a new dimension of what we can do with our glass and the element of light.
In the front of the store we installed a large scale video screen, that reveals the mastery that goes into our products, with the artisans that make them.
The retail team, lead by Dana Sabatino, VP of Customer Experience, coordinated efforts to outfit the store and finesse the product displays.
The store fixturing is an assortment of furniture designed specifically for this new location. The combination of solid walnut and burnished steel create a streamlined aesthetic for the retail floor. Jan Mollmark built the illuminated shelving units throughout the store, that feature our quintessential glass and pottery.
From drawing to reality.
We partnered with Andrew Pearce to have the pieces hand-built here in Vermont, at his facility in Hartland. Andrew and his team worked over the span of many weeks to refine the construction details for both the steel welding and wood, to finish it all under one roof. The result is an elegant group, built to last.
The new store design features a separate studio space in the back that highlights our handcrafted pendants, and lamps with a table in the center, where interior designers can meet with clients.
The studio is also conducive to the Gift Registry, where customers have this work table on which to create their ideal place-setting, or to choose the personalized assortment that they would want to have in their home.
The retail team has opened the doors!
“The new store is fantastic; awesome job by all. Thank you.” -Simon Pearce
Every holiday season, the design team presents new ways to entertain family and friends, around the table. Set a striking tablescape using our glass evergreen trees, down the center of the table with an expression of lightness.
Our intention is the make the highest quality artifacts of glass and pottery, to be enjoyed for years to come. We have a vibrant team of highly skilled craftsmen whose talents bring life to our fine products everyday.
At the heart of our mission, we want to inspire and delight everyone, with new additions to our holiday decor; this year we have several new ornaments to add to any collection.
They remain a true reflection of the design influences that surround us in our beautiful Vermont setting. Our crystal clear glass formula along with the hand-tooled forms capture the magic of a tree as if it were made of ice.
They create conversation and certainly stimulates the imagination. No two are alike. As with trees in the natural world, the subtle differences give them a unique personality.
It’s desirable to have them in groups which might inspire years of collecting and growing a forest. We refer to them as “investment” pieces that can be used and reused every year as seasonal decor items, as well as the fact that they can stay out all year long.
A new textural addition to any forest is the Snowy Branch Evergreens which are lightly dusted in white powder on the branches. This gives the impression of freshly fallen snow on our iconic trees. Enjoy the season!