For its National Treasures summer campaign, quintessentially British retailer John Lewis called upon Paul Thurlby to create fun illustrations that celebrate the people, customs and places which make the nation. The award-winning illustrator’s work can be viewed in John Lewis shop windows across the UK as well as in the Oxford Street store, where 220 life-size characters fill the main hall.
The celebration also includes a series of more than 1,000 exciting events taking place across John Lewis shops nationwide. Along with question-and-answer sessions, seminars and other experiences, there’s a whole line-up of workshops covering everything from print design and perfumery through to barbecues.
Those visiting the Oxford Street branch should head to the John Lewis Gardening Society rooftop, where you can enjoy a refreshing drink at the charming Gardener’s Arms pub, or reserve a summerhouse (alternatively, go large with a pavilion) with its own herb and flower garden to enjoy British food and drink. The rooftop is also host to fitness and gardening classes.
In addition, those who have a predilection for the ubiquitous ‘cuppa’ – otherwise known as a cup of tea – should visit the Wedgwood Tea Conservatory, in the ground-floor atrium for three weeks from 26 May. Tea appreciation does not stop there: the Blooming Great Tea Party takes place across stores on 9 June. Not only is this specific event a celebration of one of Britain’s finest traditions, it is also for a good cause: John Lewis will make a £20,000 donation to the Marie Curie charity.
And of course, John Lewis has carefully selected must-have products from some of Britain’s favourite brands such as Mulberry, Wedgwood or Tom Dixon, for pop-up shops in all department stores. There’s everything you might need for a grand day out to one of Britain’s picturesque summer destinations, including picnic rugs and portable radios. If you want to perfect the art of making a cup of tea, John Lewis has all the gear, from delicious teas through to strainers, teapots, cups and saucers. We also particularly like the collection of limited-edition items featuring Paul Thurlby’s work. Making ideal gifts or souvenirs, the tea towels, chocolates, tote bags and more are decorated with his whimsical illustrations which perfectly encapsulate the British spirit.
John Lewis, 300 Oxford Street, London W1A 1EX, +44 (0)20 7629 7711