In conversation

A lunch with our artisans

In conversation

One ritual practiced universally is the act of sharing a meal - the familiarity of eating and drinking at a table with one another is known to create a strong sense of being and belonging.

To celebrate the launch of our latest artisan collection, we invited some of the talented New Zealand women behind our artisan range to share a meal with us.

The table is set with the sun casting shadows through slats in the roof on a beautiful array of platters crafted by Yon from Claybird Ceramics and handblown tumblers by local artisan Kate Mitchell. Wearing our latest occasion range, guests are shown to their seats with murmurs of conversation growing louder as the formalities of small talk are pushed aside and the group begins to learn more about one another.

With a slow introduction of food, the conversation turns to unique experiences around sharing meals with people both familiar and not so. From Rotolo to truffle fries, it becomes clear that sitting around a table and breaking bread with one another is more than just an act – it fosters relationship and builds community.

Amidst the eating and drinking, a conversation is sparked between Yon from Claybird Ceramics and Brijana, a freelance photographer – two polar opposites in the work they produce but passionate nonetheless about their areas of expertise. It might be the tall poppy mindset that Kiwi’s, unfortunately, fall victim to but the humility that both Brijana and Yon have when talking about their work is obvious. In these moments, it’s heartening to see one woman uplifting the other and taking time to admire the craft that they’re uniquely gifted in.

As the lunch progresses so does the conversation moving to the difficulties of this year and the impact it’s had on all seated at the table. Here we have a table of mothers, daughters, sisters, and granddaughters all empathising with one another and the trials that have come with this year both in business and in their personal lives.

A comment is made in passing by food writer Eleanor, “I’ve enjoyed this year and learned to embrace the slowing of pace.” Slowing down. It’s an interesting concept that is often forgotten when life feels chaotic. Despite the chaos of the year that’s been, our guests begin to acknowledge the small things that are often taken for granted from walking around their local neighbourhoods to having the kids at home.

As the table is cleared and our guests start to leave, there is a feeling of gratitude for the time spent with one another and an air of excitement for each woman’s unique journey ahead. With the aim of this lunch being to delve deeper into the relationships with our artisans, there wasn’t a woman at the table who didn’t have an incredible story to tell and it was a privilege to sit with them and listen.

We’ll be telling these individual artisan stories over the coming weeks to celebrate the launch of our summer occasion collection and the inspiration these unique women bring to the Max family.

Photography by

Olivia Hemus

Words by

Courtenay Lewis

Shop the artisan range