Meet the Crafters

Anita Rani is joined by potter and ceramic designer Keith Brymer Jones and Arts and Crafts expert Patch Rogers to present a new four-part series for BBC Two, The Victorian House Of Arts And Crafts.

Published: 12 December 2018

Meet the six artisans who will be transported back into a remote Victorian Arts and Crafts bubble, cut off from 21st century life, to breathe life back into an original Arts and Crafts property.

Woodwork Designer

Abdollah learned his woodworking trade in Iran, where he set up his first workshop.

He left Iran in 2011 and came to the UK to establish a studio to work with, and learn from, fellow skilled artisans. After a burglary he lost everything and was forced to take on a job with a company restoring old Victorian properties. It was whilst he was working on one of his properties that he met his wife. He and his wife now run a bespoke furniture and sculpture studio together in Horsham.

Silversmith / Blacksmith/ Enameller / Jewellery

London-born Bryony and busy mum of two spent her childhood in Kenya. Her father’s desire to work abroad has meant that she has lived and visited many far flung corners of the globe. The animals, birds and tales from these countries still provide inspiration for her work today and she is equally happy crafting delicate pieces of silverware or large architectural iron work.

She loves to bring a hint of humour and glamour to the simple items we use in our daily life and she is also a keen dressmaker, specialising in 1950s style attire.

Product Designer / University Lecturer

Award-winning Design consultant Ilsa has been a visiting lecturer at 18 different institutions around the UK. Her previous clients include Heals, Unilever and Sony. Specialising in all things creative with a digital focus, Ilsa designs objects and imagery for a range of contexts, from the industrial to the sculptural, and runs an independent giftware brand. She is currently a Senior Lecturer in Product Design at the University of Lincoln.


Niamh is from an artistic family and her father is a stained glass and light designer. She started embroidering when she was a waitress and had long periods of time between her shifts; she also found the craft a really helpful way to calm her anxiety. When Niamh first began embroidering she was politically motivated, and liked to incorporate a lot of feminist views into her work.

Niamh has just completed her MA in Contemporary Craft, which combined her two loves - the political writings of Morris and Ruskin, with the Victorian language of flowers.

Bladesmith and Metal Worker

Rod is an historic bladesmith who specialises in recreating weapons, particularly from the Iron Age, Roman, Viking, and Medieval through to the Arts and Crafts Movement. He works with most metals, woods, leather and bone, and the majority of his commissions come from museums and private collectors.

Rod is passionate about authenticity, spending a lot of time researching specific artefacts and experimenting with materials and period techniques. He’s also a bit of a property developer, specialising in restoring Victorian houses to their original state.

Potter / Sculptor

Stephen - originally from Glasgow but who now lives in Dundee - has a background in sculpture, having started working with Alexander Stoddart, sculptor to the Queen, and at the young age of 14.

He’s only been a potter for two years and was inspired to try the craft whilst browsing on Instagram for artistic inspiration. His first step was to buy a kiln and he is self-taught - learning all he could about his craft from demonstrations on YouTube. He is fan of street art and a lover of yoga.

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