Simple yet striking silhouettes, elegant design, and an innate sense of style that never goes out of fashion, the Olio tableware set from Royal Doulton makes a modern statement, and even several years from now, making it truly timeless.
Designed for everyday use, this functional tableware design comes in a colour palette of sleek black, timeless white and dreamy celadon blue – pick your favourite or mix and match designs for an eclectic look.
Our collection of kitchen and dining ceramics has grown significantly in the last few years as we have come to appreciate that beautiful tableware can transform an everyday domestic routine into an enchanting ritual. Eating and drinking offer us all time to slow down, to make the most of our time with friends and family, or even just a moment to ourselves. We all deserve to drink out of a stylishly designed mug, pour a glass of water from an aesthetically attractive jug and eat our food off plates and bowls that emphasise the beauty and quality of the meals we serve.
In sIn spring 2021, Royal Doulton relaunched their tableware collection Olio by Barber Osgerby with additional pieces and updated colours. The collection by London designers Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby takes cues from our infinite love of mix-and-match ceramics; no longer is it the norm to have a single set in which every plate and bowl are identical.
The word olio is used to characterise a miscellaneous collection and derives from a term used for a dish of many ingredients originating from Spain and Portugal. The chosen name perfectly encapsulates the ethos of the collection. It makes references to the fact that Olio is not a tableware set in the conventional sense but a looser association of elements that can each stand alone or can be used in combination with other designs from the collection or with other objects in the home.
The perfect amalgamation where stylish design aesthetic merges with versatile functionality
Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby, founders of the celebrated London-based multidisciplinary design studio Barber Osgerby, worked with Royal Doulton to update their popular Olio tableware collection.
When the design studio set out to design the Olio collection, they wanted to create pieces that work with how people live and use their tableware. People nowadays do not have just one single tableware set in their cupboard – they might buy a jug from this place, some plates from that place, and some glasses from a trip. So people actually have curated collections of pieces that work well together. The result of Barber Osgerby’s work is a quietly elegant collection of pieces that can work together with the pieces you might already own, or you can buy the whole Olio set.
Designed for modern life, the Royal Doulton Olio collection is inspired by a sense of craftsmanship and the handmade. Aesthetics and practicality are balanced and uncompromised through a thoughtfully considered design. Every aspect of the tableware collection’s form and design was reduced to unify simplicity and functionality into timeless beauty and harmony.
The mix of shapes and materials is intended to ensure that Olio is not seen as a formal set but rather as a casual collection of objects that people will use alongside their existing tableware.
A soft and stylish colour palette was employed whilst taking a layered approach to materiality to create depth and interest. The collection displays a thoughtful combination of materials and finishes with both glazed and unglazed porcelain details. The tactility of ceramics, including stoneware, adds a sense of homeliness and warmth to the modern design.
The effortless aesthetic is defined by understated yet beautiful silhouettes and smooth lines, all cemented by an elegant colour scheme of graphic black, timeless white and sublime celadon blue.
Olio – a practical and decorative tableware set
Olio is a quietly sleek range of functional tableware pieces for everyday use, designed to be mixed and matched – either used individually as curated objects or combined to create a set.
At the heart of the range is a series of porcelain plates, bowls and mugs, all of which have a beautiful simplicity about them and mix glazed bodies with a distinctive unglazed band at the bottom. There are also stainless steel cutlery and wooden serveware, but our favourites are the jug and teapot, which have wonderfully fluid shapes. They are made from durable stoneware and finished with a matte black glaze on the outside, with a contrasting glossy glaze inside.
Royal Doulton stands for vision and craft, heritage and modernity, stylish elegance and timelessness
Since 1815, Royal Doulton has been at the forefront of contemporary design and craftsmanship, bringing premium quality tableware with a unique and individual look to everyone’s table.
The company has a multi-faceted history, from innovating new materials and glazing techniques to collaborating from the beginning with artists and designers and focusing on educating and empowering women.
In 1815 John Doulton invested his life savings, £100, in a small London pottery operation. From being a maker of drain pipes, pottery and storage jars, it grew to become a leader in design-driven, technically innovative manufacturing of fine tableware. In 1835, John’s son Henry joined the business, paving the path to unprecedented success. In 1865, Henry employed young London artists from the Lambeth School of Art, impressing art critics, the public and Queen Victoria. In the 1880s, the Lambeth Pottery employed over 200 artists and designers from the Art School, many of them women. In 1887, Henry Doulton became the first potter in history to be awarded the knighthood. During the 1890s, the company made significant contributions to London’s architectural fittings, tiles and decoration on landmark buildings from Harrods Knightsbridge to Savoy and Selfridges.
In 1901, Royal Doulton was born after receiving a Royal Warrant and permission to use the word ‘Royal’ in their name. And although city regulations pushed the Factory out of London in the late 1950s, Royal Doulton continues to have London at its core, celebrating the city’s heritage, diversity, artistry and vibrancy as a rich and dynamic source of inspiration.
Today Royal Doulton is a global lifestyle brand with products designed to create meaningful and authentic moments that centres around food. Royal Doulton continues to work with leading talent from many creative disciplines – recent design collaborations have included Barber Osgerby, Gordon Ramsay and Ellen DeGeneres.
A beautiful example of functional design sensibility
With appealing aesthetics, a polished palette and tactile finishes, the smart-looking Olio collection from Royal Doulton brings an elegantly eclectic vibe to your existing tableware set.
From the everyday to the festive, it brings functionality, versatility, durability and timeless design to every setting. Mix and match with the entire Olio range to encapsulate the beauty of contrasting glazes and forms or enjoy its simplicity when incorporated into existing tableware. In an edited palette of colours, materials and shapes, they can transform an occasion or simply blend into the moment.
All in all, it is a stunning collection – and one that’s designed to be used and enjoyed every day. You can browse the full Royal Doulton range here.