Characterised by a pioneering perfect balance mechanism developed in the 1930’s and an engaging anthropomorphic form, iconic, quintessentially British brand, Anglepoise® produces an incomparable series of premium lighting collections, ideally suited both for the home and for commercial interiors.
From the creation of our now iconic Original 1227™ lamp, the brainchild of British automotive engineer, George Carwardine … to the development of extended collections by esteemed industrial product designer, Sir Kenneth Grange … to our most recent venture, a collaboration with Britain’s foremost designer, Paul Smith, incomparable British design is the heart and soul of our company.
Not so surprising then that examples of our lamps can be found in homes and offices, restaurants, bars and hotels - and even in museums - all around the world; nor that the Royal Mail should celebrate our Original 1227™ design alongside such fine British Design Classics as the Mini, Penguin books and the Routemaster Bus.
Invented by a car designer
In 1932 automotive engineer, George Carwardine develops a formula for a new type of spring. He discovers that pivoting arms, supported by a sequence of these springs, can be repositioned with the lightest touch, yet will remain perfectly in place once released. Carwardine has just created the blueprint for an Anglepoise®.
Licensed to a spring maker
Carwardine turns to world-class spring makers, Herbert Terry and Sons, to manufacture his design. Terry’s is one of the few companies able to produce springs of such complexity. The Anglepoise® name is registered under licence to Terry’s, and the first Anglepoise® lamp, the 4-spring model is launched.
Reworked for a domestic market
Considering the four-spring Anglepoise® too industrial for a domestic market, Carwardine and Terry’s designers develop a three-spring version. The Original 1227™ they launch in 1935 is generally considered the archetypal Anglepoise®.
Practical, efficient & built to last
The flexible Anglepoise® shade is designed to concentrate the beam for maximum efficiency and the durable structure of the lamp is cast in metal. So when a World War 2 bomber fitted with an Anglepoise® lamp was salvaged from Loch Ness in 1985, remarkably, the lamp still worked.
Capturing the Zeitgeist
The anthropomorphic quality of the Anglepoise® lamp design has long inspired musicians, artists, designers and writers. In 1977, amateur filmmaker, Peter Ryde releases ‘Wranglepoise’, a charming video short, which brings the very human characteristics of the lamp into the limelight.
Maintaining design excellence
Having previously identified the Anglepoise® as a ‘minor miracle of balance’, in 2003 esteemed British industrial product designer Sir Kenneth Grange, responsible for some of Britain’s most iconic and successful designs, including the Kodak Instamatic and the updated London taxi, becomes Design Director of Anglepoise®.
A champion of modernism
In 2004, renowned British fashion designer, Margaret Howell, a longstanding admirer of British modernism, launches a limited edition, re-coloured version of Grange’s Type 3™ table lamp. A subsequent collaboration sees an exclusive Type 75™ desk and floor lamp reworked in yellow ochre.
Enter the big friendly Giant
Anglepoise® is approached by the Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre to produce a larger-than-life version of the writer’s beloved Original 1227™ table lamp. The Giant 1227™ lamp generates considerable interest and is soon in volume production.
Achieving design classic status
In 2009, in recognition of its iconic status, the Original 1227™ is featured on a Royal Mail stamp set alongside other pioneering British designs, including the Routemaster Bus, the K2 Telephone Kiosk, the London Underground Map and the Mini.
In 2014, foremost British designer, Paul Smith collaborates with Anglepoise®, continuing an illustrious design heritage for the brand. The Type 75™ desk lamp, designed by Sir Kenneth Grange in 2006, provides the perfect canvas for Paul Smith’s masterful colour-by-component approach.