Image Above: Annie (on right) co owner and creative director, and Adriana (on left) photoshop wizard/graphic designer.
Introducing … Annie Bradbrook
When we began our design company, based on the love-at-first-sight-blind-inspiration that knocked us over when we were first shown micro-images of metal, Imagine Studios Inc. literally, was the perfect fit. Today our company has grown in many directions from these metal microstructure origins and their images. As it became more of a personal thumbprint, our brand name needed to reflect this. The story of how we arrived at the name, Annie Bradbrook, is a good one, as far as family lore (love, scandal, exile, against-all-odds happy endings) goes. In the paragraphs below I have done my best to try and capture the tale of my great-grandfather, William Bradbrook.
We are just over the moon in cartwheel town about the exciting things planned for our new chapter. We will be adding new designs and colorways in the months ahead. In March, we will be moving west with new representation: Wall Tawk in Denver, Colorado and online showroom, Bellvine, based in California. They will be joining our incredible east coast force: Owen Design Lines, Karen Saks Showroom, House of Whitney Studio, and Designer's Market of Richmond . What hasn’t changed is our love for, and commitment to sustainable design, and, of course, all things animal and planet-friendly. We are so grateful to all of you who have been a part of this journey with us, and excited to have you along for our creative adventures ahead.
The Story of:
Our new brand-name celebrates the heroism of Annie Laurie and Emma Bradbrook, two women in my family history.
Image Above: Annie Laurie and her child from her second family in New Zealand
Image Above (right): Emma Bradbrook
Image Above (left to right): Annie Laurie, Dorrie Bradbrok, William Bradbrook, and Augusta Lucy
This story of my great grandfather, William Bradbrook, begins in England in the Late 1800s. Not unlike many family histories, time has faded much of the tapestry, but a few beautiful threads remain, and will never fade. This is what we know: Annie Laurie, aged 17, fell in love with a young boy, well above her social station. The two lovers knew a marriage would not be approved, so they created a circumstance, hoping it would force a change in parent perspective. With a child on the way, they felt confident their union would be accepted. This backfired spectacularly: Annie was disowned by her family almost instantly. In an effort to preserve the family’s reputation, the baby was given up for adoption, and Annie was put on a wind-jammer, bound for New Zealand.
All evidence of the affair was finally eradicated with the help of Emma. Emma, a young woman close in age to Annie and employed as a nurse/nanny by Annie’s family, agreed to raise William as her own. She and her husband had just lost their first child at birth and were ecstatic to have this baby boy. William was then given Emma’s last name, Bradbrook. In his 20s, William Bradbrook learned the story of his adoption and the fate of his birth mother. He began a search to try and find her and sent an advertisement to a newspaper in New Zealand. By some small miracle, Annie saw the ad., replied, and with a passage prepaid by William, sailed back to England to be reunited with her son.
Image above: notes from my grandmother, Dorrie