I write this, a little sad, feeling so very privileged and inspired, to be alighting a flight home, following the luxury of a ‘research and development’ visit to the wonderful world of Hadeland Glassverk, Norway.
The head of UK sales, Angela Murray, whisked me away for two days and a lovely evening, so I could be absorbed in all things Hadeland. This was truly an opportunity to be inspired, I will remember fondly and on return just can’t wait to visit again.
Angela’s contemporary, Audun, kindly collected us from our early flight at Oslo Airport. Enroute to the factory Audun was proud to show us the landscapes of Norway, driving through the very misty mountains, and round the village, that supports the factory with the 200+ year old accommodation for workers that is still standing today. Stunning.
We then had an introduction to the Hadeland way, by popping into their on site bakery for a typical cinnamon bun and tea before my welcome to Hadeland Factory tour and Museum with Head of Design Maud Bugge.
WOW is the only word to describe this experience, the factory is absolutely huge, immense, first impressions was I will have to come back, just to take it all in.
Maud was a fantastic host, passionately telling me about the history of Hadeland, and walking me through the process, of where the sand came locally, to the lake, and is now coming from, to the carpenters, mechanics, artisan glass blowers, cooling, polishing, archives, research, retail, the list of talented people in the factory site is huge, or modern day campus that is very impressive.
Pardon the pun but, I was ‘blown away! Although at this stage the glass blowing was scheduled for tomorrow.
The factory slows down around 3:30-4:00, so we checked-in at Thorbjornrud Hotel (owned by Hadeland) to relax and refresh and have the opportunity to catch upon mails whilst strolling from the edge of the lake – simply breathtaking.
Hadeland really know how to host, a pre dinner drink, at 6, aquavit obviously. Then a delicious 4 course meal presented to us of local produce, delicious, wine, and many other guests that are from Oslo, who use this great location for staff conferences and educational events.
Friday: Most of you that know me know that, every day where possible, I pop out for a morning walk, so when waking at 5:30, I took the opportunity to get out in the fresh air and osborb more inspiration with a stroll round the hotel grounds and lake prior to breakfast.
We then too a short walk to Hadeland for their glassblowing and glass production, I think as offered the chance to blow my own little vase, and attempt some glass cutting, in the spirit of Halloween, my crystal cuts had that concept spot on, a novice and a new skill.
We then popped back to the Hadeland bakery for a Nordic tea and bun, to refuel, before indulging in the opportunity to shop and browse in the village, where all goods are heavily discounted, 50-80% off when purchasing on site.
Time for a delicious, typical lunch in “Kokkestua”, giving Angela and I a chance to discuss potential opportunities project collaboration and design ideas that we can work on in the future.
Angela would not let me leave without squeezing in one more fantastic piece of inspiration, 10 minutes from the factory 🏭 is the Kistefos Museum & park, which although officially closed in October, it’s another amazing place for inspiration, and a place to pause for thought, stand still, breathe and be very grateful.
1 hour drive to Airport, possibly the most pleasant airport I’ve had the pleasure of spending a few hours in, and back over to the UK to share with my team what we are doing next.
Thank you Angela, Audun, Maud and Hadeland, this has been such an inspiration and such a gift to C3M Studio, we just can’t wait to return, and get one of our design collaborations moving forward.
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