Almost the first thing that a visitor to the website of UK-based Neptune sees is a gentle request for visitors to consider donating to Ukrainian refugees. That is the clearest evidence that this homewares company founded by two friends with a mutual love of the sea and sailing is an ethics-driven business. For three decades John Sims-Hilditch and co-founder Giles Redman have been producing home goods for discerning customers. Those customers care about the origin of each piece too so when Neptune began making rugs it was only natural it turned to GoodWeave®, says Sophie Demetriades, Product Knowledge Manager
“It is really important for us that we look after the people who actually make the rugs.” We want everyone at Neptune to be happy working for Neptune.”
The company’s growth was rather serendipitous. Customers, so pleased with the quality of the garden hammocks, asked the entrepreneurs if they would make other things. Perhaps, some asked, “Might you make a table to go with the hammock?” and then “Why not something for the kitchen to go with the table?” The products, which often involved the kind of quality carpentry and joinery associated with the cabinetry of yacht making, just kept coming. And so it went. With the additional involvement of John’s wife, the well-known interior designer and creative founder of Neptune, Emma Sims-Hilditch, the company became known for creating a curated “look” for homes. In fact, as Cassie Rowland, the company’s Head of Product Development & Knowledge, points out, Neptune also offers a one-on-one design consultancy service to create just that special look and she says, a rug is a very important part of that. “A good rug in a room is what brings the focus of the whole design together.”
Neptune’s rugs, of course, are crafted with the same attention to quality and durability as the company’s other products. Sophie points to the labor intensive, environmentally friendly Whittington, for example. It is made from durable hemp and the varied tones in the loop pile carpet create a textural and sturdy weave that adds depth while its honey color with glints of silver evokes the tones of the British countryside. Alderbury, one of Neptune’s geometric patterned rugs in soft saffron or teal is, Sophie says, a perfect example of the inspiration the company’s owners, John and Emma, get from the natural world around their home. The flat-weave Chedworth is another geometric piece in wool and cotton. Chedworth comes in off white, flax blue and lead light. Elgin, a high pile very textural piece is plaited giving it extraordinary depth, Cassie explains.
The rugs seem to have a broad appeal but particularly attract buyers who appreciate a discreet elegance, heritage design, architectural detail and of course the British countryside. Neptune’s customers are also discerning about making ethical choices in their buying. The company’s guiding principle is social responsibility or in employee shorthand, “doing the right things for the right reasons.”. As Sophie puts it, “We want to make sure not only that our practices are certified, but when questions come up, we can educate the suppliers how to improve their practices. GoodWeave can help us do that.”
For more information: Neptune.com