Ian Morris: ‘What makes me unhappy? Retail in August.’
Having worked through the 80s as a textile designer producing hand-printed fabrics for the fashion industry, Ian Morris established Map in 1990 with Kathryn Phalp. Venturing into the world of decorated china and glass, Map developed an international reputation from their studio/shop on Junction Road. In 2000 they moved to new premises and began to concentrate on retail, with Kathryn producing one-off pieces of jewellery, and Ian continuing to make original pieces of artwork in sandblasted and handpainted glass. He’s currently putting the final touches on a quirky new Archway-inspired product range which will be in store soon.
When were you happiest?
The first day we opened the shop in Junction Road: really stressful, but rewarding.
Where would you like to live?
In Archway Tower: best view in north London.
What is your favourite sound or smell?
The smell of a good Sunday lunch wafting into the shop from the St John’s Tavern across the road.
‘The best view in north London?’
What is your greatest life achievement?
That Kathryn and I have managed to run such a successful business for over 20 years.
What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
Don’t judge a gift by its price.
What is your earliest K-Town memory?
Cycling through Kentish Town at 1am and ‘experiencing’ the nightlife of 80s London; it was quite a thing for a country boy.
What makes you unhappy?
Retail in August.
What simple thing would improve your quality of life?
What is your most unappealing habit?
Talking about the weather… all the time!
What is your guilty pleasure?Asking customers to get me a hot chocolate from the Bread & Bean.
Who or what do you hate and why?
People with narrow minds.
The shop on Junction Road
Best and worst experiences in the neighbourhood?
Best: turning shop customers into friends. Worst: doing Camden market in the 80s when all it did was rain.
What’s the worst thing anyone’s said to you?
“Are you retiring soon?”
Tell us a secret.
I’m not naturally this tanned.
What has your career taught you?
Think about it overnight.
What is your favourite dish and why?
A cheese platter from Truffles in York Rise.
What did you do today?
Wrapped gifts and talked about the weather.
Describe yourself as an animal.
I’ve never really thought about what I’m most like, but I was once described as a brown bear.