Saturday, 17 September 2011

Dixon Turner/ Newmor Work Placement

I completed my three week work placement with Dixon Turner (UK name) or Newmor (International name) a couple of weeks ago now, but have been too busy since to blog about it! It's amazing how such a big contract wallcoverings company can be tucked away in little old Welshpool! The experience was definitely quite a contrast to working at Timorous Beasties (see the blog post here ) as it has so many departments and you have to think how things would look in hotels, offices and public spaces instead of homes.

I was shown around the factory on the first day which illustrates just how vast the production is! All of the wallcoverings are vinyl based and embossed to give hard wearing, textured finishes. All of the design work is done by just a handful of designers, which can be hand drawn or worked on a programme called AVA, which is digitally printed to test the results and then sent through to the Colourists at the proof press. The Colourists mix up the dyes by hand to give the same overall feeling as the digital sample, this is then sent to production. The company also do 'specials' for companies such as John Lewis, and 'You Chooses' where clients ask for a specific design and colour combination - so they are definitely kept on their toes!

Newmor Design Studio

Whilst at the company, one of my main tasks was to conduct a sales analysis and produce a display board to present the findings. Using my findings, I was then asked to re-colour one of the plain shade cards, 'Matrix,' taking off irrelevant colours, rearranging the palette and introducing new colours to update it. I did this using a programme called AVA which is quite complex but very useful, and the digital printer. This task involved many stages and reviews but was very satisfying when I could see the results.

One of my sales analysis boards

The digital printer for sampling

Amongst other tasks, I spent three days with the colourists, where I was asked to colour match digital samples for the new domestic range. I really enjoyed this as it was very hands on and messy! However, it was also great to see another aspect of the company and get to grips with the machinery and raw materials. It was also exciting to see how my own colours turned out as each layer of the design built up. I'm hoping I may see one of my colourways in the final cut!

Colourist Ann and the dye mixing bench

The dye bench

Russel and the proof press

I had a great experience at Newmor, learnt so much and can't thank everyone enough for welcoming me and helping me soak up lots of knowledge! Take a look at the Newmor website.

(I haven't put too many photos of the work I undertook here as much of it is yet to be released and I'd hate to ruin the surprise!)


  1. I like the post Em, Why does the colourist have to wear a hi vis vest? (just out of interest)

  2. Thanks Kev. Well that part is basically in the factory. The rollers that go onto the proof press are very big and heavy and have to be lifted with a forklift and then with a pulley system - so there is a lot more movement and heavy duty machinery and equipment than you might expect.