Our Heritage

In the beginning

Artistic Upholstery was founded in 1952 by Jim Mitchell, an accomplished furniture designer who was born and worked in the Scottish furniture town of Beith in Ayrshire.

Jim was trained under the critical eye of his father, a respected designer and master craftsmen with Matthew Pollock and Son, makers of some of the finest furniture in Scotland, who are accredited to making some of the luxury furniture and fittings on both RMS Queen Mary and RMS Queen Elizabeth.

Jim moved south in the mid 1930’s and settled in Nottingham, where he found work designing both cabinets and upholstery as a freelance, and on commenced working in the thriving town of Long Eaton.

He always wanted to be in control of design and manufacture, so on the 13th October 1952, he commenced making bespoke upholstery on the third floor of a magnificent lace mill in Derbyshire, later moving to a 4000 square feet factory in the heart of Long Eaton. Over the years we have expanded to some 30,000 square feet to include showrooms, upholstery workshop, and polishing shop and design studio.

These mills have more than played their part in the growth and history of the town, built to hold hundreds of Lace Machines, where the thrum of looms filled the air making the highest of quality of ‘Nottingham Lace’ which was shipped to every corner of the globe.

It is impossible not to feel inspired by such a legacy, indeed, Long Eaton is known throughout the world as the centre of quality upholstery within the United Kingdom.

Jim Mitchell

Where it all began

Original Factory

Prestigious Excellence

Jim’s vision of producing the very best of furniture still exists here at Artistic, where our sofas and chairs can be found in some of the most exclusive stores in the world, together with fine country houses, embassies, hotels, and of course, those who appreciate the finer things in life.

Artistic is still privately owned and managed by the founding family, now in its third generation and still very much ‘hands on’ by family members. We are one of the oldest furniture companies in the area in terms of family ownership.

In 1989, Artistic Cabinets was born, changing its name to Iain James Furniture to reflect Jim’s two grandsons Iain and James, where Iain is Managing Director. The two companies work in close harmony and share the same premises and showrooms whilst keeping their individual identities.

In 1998, the company was awarded the coveted Manufacturing Guild Mark by the Worshipful Company of Furniture Makers in the City of London, in recognition of High Quality production and manufacturer. Limited to just 50 companies in the UK.

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