THE grandson of one of the 20th century's most celebrated textile designers is relaunching his grandad's iconic 'Tibor' brand 35 years after work stopped at Clifford Mill.
Sam Reich, from Avenue Road, Stratford, is just 22-years-old and was only five when his Hungarian grandfather Tibor Reich—a pioneer in post-war fabric design—died in 1996.
But Sam’s love for history and his passion for art and design have encouraged him to dust off the drapes, and fetch back the fabrics.
This week he received a sizeable investment from the government’s ‘Start-up Loans’ scheme, launched by Prime Minister David Cameron and ex-Dragon’s Den star James Caan.
The Bristol University History graduate said: “Obviously it is important for me to perpetuate the history of Tibor because if I don’t do it, the legacy of the company wouldn’t continue into the 21st century.”
Born in Budapest, Tibor Reich moved to Stratford in 1946 and set up a textiles industry in Clifford Chambers.
With a vast archive of over 10,000 designs, the company wove fabrics for the Queen, Downing Street, and closer to home, the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
In 1964, Tibor was commissioned to drape and produce anniversary tapestries for the Shakespeare Centre, opened by Prince Philip, and the fabric on the seats of pre-production Concorde planes were his designs.
Tibor Ltd was manufacturing at Clifford Mill until 1978 but for history-lover Sam, the prints are about much more than just eye-catching patterns.
“Each piece is not just a print of fabric with a nice pretty design on it, they’re actually pieces of history that relate to important 20th century British contracts,” he said.
“The Midlands has a very strong heritage of production, particularly in arts and craft.
“People don’t realise that the Midlands was a hub of creativity and production in 1950s and 60s, home to the founding fathers of what we see as modern design.”
After organising his grandfather’s huge archive over the past two years, Sam is now ready to relaunch the brand.
Next year will be focused on developing the products and finding somewhere to manufacture them, but he also hopes to reissue some of the prints commissioned for the Royal Shakespeare Theatre in line with the huge celebrations for the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth.
The process has been hugely rewarding personally for the young man who could not properly remember his grandfather.
“It now seems as if I do remember him,” he said. “Over the last two years I have been going through the books and the archives so I know him through his work.”
Sam and his father Alex live in Tibor’s old house on Avenue Road, a remarkable interior which itself is an archive of his work.
The father-and-son team are currently producing a book on the history of the Tibor fabrics, and would like to hear from anybody who worked at Clifford Mill between 1946-78.
Tibor’s pioneering designs are also on exhibit at the Gordon Russell Design Museum in Broadway until 12th October.
To find out more on the relaunch of Tibor follow @tiborreich on Twitter, visit Tibor Reich Design on Facebook, or e-mail email@example.com
He has even chosen to set up his office well away from any kind of police building—for the time being in a county-...
Now that a scheme to develop up to 800 homes on the site has been given official government backing, the proposals are e...
STRATFORD-on-Avon District is an attractive place to live and its population has grown rapidly over recent decades. &nb...