La Cartuja de Sevilla was born out of the entrepreneurial spirit of an English family who had fallen in love with Andalusia in 1841. The factory at the Cartuja monastery brought the industrial revolution to Seville. The quality of its tableware and decorative pieces is as much due to the industrial driven innovations imported by its founder as to the expert hands of the Seville artisans who were quick to incorporate them into their work.
Whilst Charles Pickman, the founder, was at the helm of the Company, he introduced several changes to the factory, from technical innovations in the ovens to exotic and fashionable designs of the time in the decoration of the crockery. Tableware and decorative objects from the Seville factory quickly gained international recognition: in 1862 and 1878, it received the gold medal at the Universal Exhibitions of London and Paris respectively. What is more, it became supplier to the royal household in 1871.
The factory has proudly employed various generations of Seville artisans, as well as exporting its beautiful tableware from its beginnings half was round the world.
When you lay your table with a dinner service from La Cartuja you are doing so with an extraordinarily crafted history-laden object.
“Many Spanish youngsters saw how in their house the full Cartuja dinner set was carefully stored; and its use was a spectacle to behold if we truly understand how extraordinary it really is. I still celebrate Christmas Eve with the 202 Pink dinner set and the following morning I use it again and travel back in time to the wonderland of my childhood.”
“La Cartuja has been in my family, in my parents’ house, since I can remember. On a day-to-day basis with very small children, I try to be a little more practical but I refuse to give up eating off a good dinner service. As well as good table etiquette, it is very important to me that the food is well prepared and presented.”
The Rider Romero family
“When special occasions come around I like to get out the perfect dinner set, together with the perfect crystal and cutlery, all impeccably laid, the ironed, taut tablecloth, spotlessly white, and place names for each setting… Even if later my son comes along and messes everything up! I have always used La Cartuja tableware for special occasions, it dignifies the table.”
“On some occasions we mix up the dinner sets, especially when there are more intimate affairs which allow for more playfulness and improvisation. You can take a really old plate of my grandmother’s for the bread but then there are coffee cups which are really modern with the idea that the result is harmonious and fun.”
The Serrano Hurtado Family
“My grandmother used to use La Cartuja. She had individual pieces, which either had been a gift or had survived over the years. As a girl I remember I would entertain myself by observing the intricate details of the patterns that decorated the plate, whilst waiting for dinner to be served.”
Yasmin S. Price.