Creating Timeless Beauty in SOLIDWORKS


Robert Welch Designs

The Company

Since it was established in 1955 in an old silk mill in Chipping Campden, Robert Welch Designs has built up a world-class homeware product brand that is steeped in silversmithing and craftsmanship. From cutlery to candlesticks, a small design team has created 3,418 individual new products that offer its customers a "timeless beauty" that has led to sales of over 46 million items around the world.

The Challenge

As a prolific designer of iconic cutlery and kitchenware, Robert Welch needed a 3D CAD software for solid modelling that was both functional and aesthetic. Working predominately in stainless steel, the company was developing a new plastic Signature Non-Stick Utensil range and needed simulation and surfacing tools that would meet their high standards of precision engineering.

The Solution

The company had been using Deskartes for its CAD modelling. When its design director Paul deBretton Gordon arrived nine years ago from Wedgewood, he found an old seat of SOLIDWORKS 'knocking around' that was unused and put it to the test.

"We quickly realised that SOLIDWORKS was a lot more advanced than what we had been using. I got the essentials from a 3-day NT CADCAM training course at their offices in Haddenham and from there I've been learning on the job."

Robert Welch Designs continue to use SOLIDWORKS to innovate in every stage of their design process. Their Signature design pattern, which is a cross of four ovals, is made using Pattern Wizard in SOLIDWORKS and adds lightness to the metal throughout their signature range. It was one of the outstanding features of their award-winning Signature Cookbook and Tablet Stand at the Excellence in Housewares Awards 2014.

The Results

  • Seamless surfacing
  • Award-winning products
  • Accelerated development time
  • Faster time to market


"NT CADCAM are very much part of that community and the design processes we use. They are always very helpful and we are confident they are the right partner for us in going forward.

"If we had any issues we could call up their technical team and when there was a product we couldn't get to grips with, NT CADCAM would come out, stay with us for a few days and do some on-site training with us."

"We use SOLIDWORKS for practically 98 percent of everything we make. It's been the best package for us to use in terms of functionality and aesthetics."

Paul deBretton Gordon

Design Director at Robert Welch Designs.