Alyce Tran, co-founder of decorative tableware brand In the Roundhouse, has done many collaborations, but her latest partnership with New Zealand’s Cloudy Bay is a first. Tran says that while it makes sense for In the Roundhouse to partner with a wine brand, she had no intention of simply applying their iconography to her dinnerware.
“As Cloudy Bay is owned by LVMH, the brief came with a full-on, 80-page brand guide. It was branding on another level. Initially, they wanted the plates to be quite similar to the wine, down to things like logos on bottles.”
Evidently, however, In the Roundhouse won out, with the four-piece plate collection featuring imaginative and original illustrations by young contemporary artist Chesca Athas. The ‘kit’ comes with a menu and place cards for customisation, and a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, perfectly paired with fresh sashimi, oysters or charred prawns, and a versatile Pinot Noir.
“If we were just going to replicate the visuals that are already there, there would have been no point. Chesca has a fun, whimsical style that I think contrasts well with the more traditional Cloudy Bay brand. It strikes a good balance,” says Tran.
Taking visual cues from the surrounding Marlborough region and nearby coastal waterways, the plates feature artistic interpretations: fish from the Wairau River and clams from the salty waters of the crescent-shaped Cloudy Bay shoreline. Tran conjured up the “When lunch turns into dinner” and “Good food better company” inscribed plates with her friend and Cloudy Bay brand manager Lawrence Pretty.
“The designs were inspired by the natural wonder of our home in Marlborough, New Zealand. In the Roundhouse have managed to capture the spirit of the winery and present it in a fun and modern way,” says Pretty. “We wanted to create something special that was not only designed to bring people together, but also something that stayed true to both our brands. Cloudy Bay, similar to In the Roundhouse, is motivated by bringing together.”
This collaboration is available now at David Jones stores and online at davidjones.com