SCP has been manufacturing design product for three decades, it has been a wonderful journey, we hope this page can tell a little of our story.
We began producing things in the mid-80’s, using specialist craftspeople to make pieces in small batches. After our designs started to gain attention and then started to sell, we had to think about how to grow. Gradually, we have grown our manufacturing capacity, always seeking innovative and cost effective ways to make high-end design. A major step in product development was when we took on the running of our own upholstery factory in Norfolk, a factory we had been already working with for over ten years. This gave us far better control over product development and has taught us much else besides. When not making upholstery at the factory, we are sourcing components for our other designs all across the UK, creating a network of production partners. Around a decade ago we began to outsource our wood production to mainland Europe, finding excellent partners in Slovenia with the skills and capacity to match our ambition. Finding the best skills to make specific products has informed our approach to manufacturing.
We create partners and ensure they maintain SCP standards in terms of good practice and the sustainable use of materials, that is really important to us. We are very proud to be a British manufacturer, one who launches new products year after year. So many great people have helped us along the way, and we take real pleasure working with wonderfully talented craftsman and woman, from all across Britain, in Europe and now also in India.
In recent years, our own specialist upholstery factory in Norfolk, England, has made great advances, it now produces entirely sustainable pieces. We use FSC approved hardwood frames and natural replacements to petrochemical based foams in the upholstery itself. The factory has also recently expanded, creating an in-house frame-making facility. Running our own factory has helped us understand the manufacturing process more fully and it would be fair to say we are now more rigorous, exacting and efficient than we ever have been, challenging times have demanded it.
On this page, we present an overview of how we make things, you may be surprised by the complexity and variety of the work SCP do. There is hand-made upholstery in Norfolk, advanced wood-making in the Slovenian forests, hand-glazing in Stoke-on-Trent, traditional weaving in Wales and rug making on looms in India. These are the many processes that have allowed us to quite literally, make advances.
Coakley & Cox Ltd, SCP’s own specialist upholstery factory, is nestled in the flatlands of Norfolk. It’s made up of a small dedicated team of pattern cutters, seamstresses, upholsterers, product developers and designers. They all work closely together to create each individual piece of furniture that leaves the factory. The process of making upholstery is quite a precise art. Once designs are completed, a frame is made. This frame has a lifetime guarantee, it is traditionally glued and screwed together using FSC approved European hardwood. Once this is made, zig-zig springs are applied and the frame is upholstered by hand with natural fibres, animal hair and wool. The factory uses traditional techniques in this process, little having changed in hundred of years, except an improvement in the tools. Finally, fabric is applied and depending on the piece, feather cushions are made. Some of the SCP designs need to be button upholstered, or hand pleated, or both, they require extra attention and time. All of this endeavor results in a very lovingly made piece of furniture, one that is fully sustainable, in both the materials used to make it and in the retention of the skills required to do so. You find a real family atmosphere at the factory, it’s a place where expertise and knowledge are shared and designs are made collectively.
All of the SCP designs made in wood are manufactured in Slovenia. Bordering Italy, Slovenia has a long furniture making tradition and very good access to locally sourced sustainable wood. Their factories have the best skills, the most advanced machinery and a real dedication to quality. Their locality within Europe also means SCP keep shipping to a minimum. To make the SCP products, a mixture of hand skills like sanding, lacquering and pressing are combined with advanced CNC machine tooling techniques. All the designs are made in small batches and most are fully pre-assembled and tested on site. SCP have made excellent partners in Slovenia, with their expertise the SCP product development team has been able to push the boundaries of what can be designed and made in wood. A material so flexible, so durable, so enduring, it’s impossible to imagine a world without it.
In recent years, SCP has moved into the world of weaving. Sheridan Coakley has worked closely with textile designer Donna Wilson to produce two collections of textiles, Nos Da and Bora Da. The cloth is used for cushions, blankets, throws and upholstery. To make the collections, SCP have worked with a traditional mill in Wales, one that has been in the same family for over a century. The textile industry originally grew in Wales because of the availability of water to power the mills and the locality of sheep farming for the wool. SCP have their own yarn specially spun and dyed in Yorkshire, England, this is sent to Wales where it is woven, using the same double-cloth technique that has been passed down across many generations.
SCP now produce two different product ranges in ceramics, one of lighting and one of tableware. These ceramics are made in Stoke-on-Trent, the area know locally as “The Staffordshire Potteries”, or just “The Potteries”. Pottery production here dates back to at least the 17th Century. The abundance of clay, salt and lead for glazing, and coal to fire the kilns all contributed to its founding as an industry in the area. Josiah Wedgwood played a key role in industrialising the region in the 18th Century. SCP use two factories to make their designs and are pleased to work with a part of British industry that was once at the very forefront of the industrial revolution.
SCP’s long-time love of production methods led Sheridan Coakley and Donna Wilson to India to make the new Rug collection. Working with a well-established factory who employ very talented craftsmen and women, they make a range of rugs that use three different techniques: flat-weaving, hand-looming and hand-tufting. The factory is a place of time-honoured techniques, with each stage of the production process taking place under one roof. This collaboration has seen SCP broaden their scope of manufacture, learn much about how to work in a culturally sensitive way and has enabled them to design and create a new kind of product for the brand.