Chris Cheeseman is the Head of Graphic Design at Thomas Lyte, and is a self-confessed design exhibition geek. We invited Chris to write a journal article as part of our #InTheMoment series that unpicks and explores the detail behind the moments that inspire us.
.. … .. … .. … .. … .. … .. … .. … ..
Excitement is building ahead of The Coronation of His Majesty The King and Her Majesty The Queen Consort. set for Saturday 6th May 2023.
More details about the historic occasion are being revealed by Buckingham Palace as the date draws nearer, with one in particular having caught the eye of our creative team here at Thomas Lyte; the unveiling of King Charles III’s official Coronation Emblem.
The emblem is a contemporary design, uniting the UK’s four national flowers in the form of the magnificent St Edward’s Crown, as is used at the moment of coronation, and was created by one of the world’s most influential designers, Sir Jony Ive KBE.
The rose of England, the thistle of Scotland, the daffodil of Wales and the shamrock of Northern Ireland are rendered in the deep blue and red of the Union Jack, with a clear serif typeface running around the edge bearing the name of the monarch.
“The design was inspired by King Charles’ love of the planet, nature, and his deep concern for the natural world” said Sir Jony Ive, speaking on the release of the emblem.
“The emblem speaks to the happy optimism of spring and celebrates the beginning of this new Carolean era for the United Kingdom. The gentle modesty of these natural forms combine to define an emblem that acknowledges both the joyful and profound importance of this occasion.”
Sir Jony Ive. Formerly the Chief Design Officer at Apple, Sir Jony Ive is believed to hold more than 14,000 patents worldwide.
Born in London and a graduate of Newcastle Polytechnic (now Northumbria University), his design leadership and vision were instrumental in the development of the iPod, iMac, iPhone and iPad, products that transformed Apple into the powerhouse tech brand it is today.
His devotion to sleek, minimalist ergonomic forms in his designs have made him a household name – a rare achievement for a tech designer – and in 2012 he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his contributions to design and enterprise.
As a school student, I was a visitor to the Design Museum’s first Designer of the Year exhibition in 2003, in which Sir Jony Ive won the prize for the iMac and iPod
I remember how amazed I was by the arrival of the iMac. In a world where drab, beige, box-shaped computers were the norm, the colours and curves of the iMac were a revelation. This was a formative moment for me, sparking an interest in design that has stayed with me ever since.
Today, it is Sir Jony’s stated ‘fanatical care beyond the obvious stuff’ that I find most inspiring, with his relentless experiments into new tools, materials and production processes echoed by the craftsmen and creatives at Thomas Lyte.
His Royal Highness and Sir Jony Ive have collaborated before, with Ive and his creative collective LoveFrom team designing the Seal of the Terra Carta, an initiative established by the then Prince of Wales which recognises private sector companies that are leading the way in creating sustainable markets.
Coronation Emblem would be expected to reflect the personality and values of the monarch, as well as the historical and cultural significance of the event.
It is well known that during his time as a Prince, King Charles used his position to champion positive change, spearheading numerous initiatives for the benefit of the natural world. In depicting the flora of the four nations of the United Kingdom in the shape of St Edward’s Crown, this emblem feels distinctively personal to The King.
Floral shapes and forms have long been a source of inspiration for British designers. From the famous floral patterns of the radical Victorian designer, craftsman and campaigner, William Morris, to the beautiful chased flowers that characterise Thomas Lyte’s Head Silverware Designer Trevor Brown’s design for the late Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee Processional Cross shown in images below.
The Coronation Emblem will feature throughout the historic celebrations in May, including the Coronation Service at Westminster Abbey, Coronation Concert at Windsor Castle, street parties, and community gatherings around the country. It will also be used for all official merchandise commemorating the special occasion, featuring on mugs, plates and tea towels.
The emblem is available in both Welsh and English, and guidelines for its use have also been published by the Lord Chamberlain’s Office. It can be downloaded in PDF and PNG formats, in two sizes, and in various colours, via the links below.
We have selected a number of case studies that demonstrate the broad range of our capabilities designing and making in precious metals.