Recently the Buy Britain team were lucky enough to visit Coniston Stonecraft in The Lake District. During the visit we learned a great deal about how they turn beautiful lakeland slate into a wide range of products. In this blog we put the spotlight on slate house signs.
Set in the idyllic town of Coniston in the Lake District, Coniston Stonecraft are a small team of passionate craftsmen. They embody everything good about small local businesses. For example they champion local skills and jobs by training up new apprentices. Coniston Stonecraft are also very keen on being green! A great deal of effort goes into making their products eco-friendly. They produce their own hydro-electricity on-site and use recycled packaging for postage. Furthermore, unlike much imported stone, with Coniston, you can be certain that the stone has been quarried locally according to strict local guidelines with staff on fair wages. Lakeland slate comes in different colours according to where it was quarried in the Lake District. These beautiful colours are naturally occurring and not added to the stone!
With decades of experience, the team at Coniston craft each slate house sign to order. The process takes time, effort and skill. Each slate house sign is first cut to size from a solid piece of slate. Depending on your chosen finish, the edges of the slate are prepared to the desired style. For example they can have a rougher but natural looking ‘rustic’ finish or a smooth polished finish. Coniston cuts the required letters and numbers using a special machine. A skilled craftsman guides the machine by hand using metal letter/number templates. The slate house sign is now ready for the finishing process. The stone is left to fully dry out and is then finely polished/finished. This is where the beautiful natural colours and patterns of the slate really start to shine through.
The beauty of these lakeland slate house signs is that they are stylish, practical and eco-friendly. Being made from solid stone, they are hard wearing in the weather, and will last a lifetime. The range of lakeland stone colours, lettering colours and finishes means that the slate house signs can suite a wide variety of house styles, from traditional to modern. Coniston makes each piece to order and each piece of stone is unique, guaranteeing your slate house sign will be one-of-a-kind.