In Good Company: Hamish Smith

By Matt Balmer
May 2, 2019

The creative director for tile producer Artisans of Devizes talks colour, fragrance and drawing inspiration from his family

When was the business founded, and why?

With nothing more than a sparse workshop, a handful of craft skills and an admiration for the infinite variety and beauty of natural stone and handmade tiles, my father founded Artisans of Devizes back in 1989. Over the last 30 years, we have grown to become one of the UK’s leading stone and tile companies. Whilst our collections and designs are always evolving, the business itself remains true to its core values of quality, craftsmanship, integrity and collaboration.

How many staff?

We are a growing team of 58.

Where is it based?

Our head-office is in Devizes and has been since we were founded in 1989.

What is your latest significant achievement/project of note?

In 2016 I designed a beautiful hexagonal cement tile with angular lines, called the Lily Pad tile. The versatile tile is inspired by patterns found in nature and is a huge hit with homeowners, designers and influencers alike. I love nothing more than seeing what our customers do with a tile that we designed.

What is your best-selling product?

Our Lily Pad collection is our best-selling tile. When we first introduced Lily Pad it was a handmade encaustic cement tile and we love this artisanal way of tile manufacturing so we extended the colour range. However, we realise that encaustic cement tiles are not for everyone so have invested in a patented design to make it available in a porcelain tile too. This season we launched the Lily Pad Porcelain tile in Bubblegum and Custard.

I’ve just discovered…

A personal confidence of using colour in my own home. I’ve always loved designing and making beautiful eye-catching tiles in an array of colours but haven’t always reflected this in my own home. That is, until now.

Who inspires me…

My children. They have had such an insight into the business and continue to inspire me to create new and exciting collections that homeowners and designers will want to use in their homes and projects.

I’ve always been a fan of…

Fragrance. I am fanatical about ensuring that our showrooms and the surroundings are welcoming and enjoyable experiences for anyone that visits, for me, scent plays such a massive part in helping to create the right environment. Fragrance has always been something that has fascinated me.

My highlight of the last 12 months…

Growing our team at Artisans of Devizes. We’ve enhanced the team in many different areas of the business in the last twelve months and I enjoy the excitement of working with colleagues that are just as excited to build and develop the business as I am.

My next design trip is to…

India is top of my wish-list, we’re currently curating our Autumn/Winter 2019 and Spring/Summer 2020 collections. A visit to India would provide great inspiration for our new collections.