In 2006, Caitlin and Samuel Dowe-Sandes embarked to Marrakesh, for a year-long sabbatical from their careers in public relations and filmmaking. From the beginning, they were in awe of Morocco’s artisan culture and meticulous hand craftmanship. Having fallen in love with this medium, they wanted to elevate the perception of concrete tile by combining in the traditional influences of Moroccan craft with a modern twist, thus creating Popham Design.
Traditionally, Moroccan encaustic tiles are a mixture of fine Portland cement and marble dust mined from the Atlas mountains. Rather than being fired, they are poured into their molding and hydraulically pressed before left to cure for a month.
Maintaining this age-old craft, Caitlin and Samuel added their own style by applying modern patterns and color combinations. Each pattern draws inspiration from the rich history of Morocco and its natural elements.
Partnering with Ann Sacks in 2008 as the exclusive U.S. distributor of several in-stock products. The first pattern of this collaboration was zig zag, a dynamic pattern in the kohl and milk color that creates a statement in any room setting.
Currently Ann Sacks stocks four popular Popham designs under the name Paccha by Popham Design, as well as the Eastern Promise collection created in collaboration with designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard. Clients can select from these designs or accesss the assortment of 84 specialty colors and custom patterns from Popham Design.