Jamaicans love their patties and are happy to eat them from a paper bag, breaking them up with their fingers, but now, thanks to Dana Baugh, the principal ceramicist and owner of the BAUGHaus Design Studio in Savanna la Mar, Jamaica, patty-lovers can enjoy their favorite versions in high style from a specially-designed “patty plate.”
Baugh was inspired to pay tribute to Jamaica’s unique culinary treat to honor Jamaica’s 60th anniversary of independence with her new “Emancipendence” patty collection. Baugh described the Jamaican beef patty as a cultural icon that is worthy of its own handcrafted, porcelain plate.
The BAUGHaus Design Studio has been known for years for its production of detailed, stylish, and functional tableware based on uniquely Jamaican themes. These include the Lignum Vitae teapot and set, Jamaican-themed Christmas ornaments, box-drink-style pitchers, banana-leaf-design platters, and now the Jamaican patty plate. All the pieces crafted at the studio display Baugh’s intention to spur cultural reflection.
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Baugh decided to pursue her “side-hustle” ceramics interest into a full-time occupation in 2016 with the establishment of the BAUGHaus Design Studio. As a new entrepreneur in a new market, Baugh participated in the Market Readiness Program of Aid to Artisans in 2017. The program features one-stop help for artisan-based businesses that want to enter the retail market in the United States with training and coaching in product development and business preparation. Baugh was confident she could make a success of her ceramics business through her creativity and design skills. What she needed was a way to ensure she had what she needed to raise production capacity to meet market demand. Since establishing her studio, Baugh has been able to expand her workspace and hire three staff members. She is committed to continually training her staff in new skills as she recognizes that the work is a career choice for them.
There is a growing demand for handcrafted Jamaican products, Baugh believes, and she feels it is an ethical choice as well as a business choice. Jamaican culture has a major impact on the world’s pop culture, especially in the US, she added, and this often results in cultural appropriation of Jamaica’s art and music. Jamaican creators need the opportunity as small businesses to promote Jamaican products made by Jamaicans, she said.
Photo – BAUGHaus Design Studio