Maps

A life time’s weather maps from the British Met Office.

From 1919 spanning almost one hundred years and 4 generations of Britain, our mug templates below tell a visible story of how technology and fashion changed over the decades. Take a look at our Birthday Weather mug templates to see this transformation.

ltd_editions_Nov_2013_dated 1

Starting with the subtle colours of the 1920’s, the maps have a distinct feel of the British stiff upper lip. These vintage maps mostly feature in pale blue and cream. The grey pencil marks and hand writing, gives them a tangible and intimate feel.

ltd_editions_Nov_2013_dated 2ltd_editions_Nov_2013_dated 3

Moving into the 1930’s, 40’s and 50’s the maps undergo their first major colour change. A spectrum of oranges was used to detail the maps and the information became more comprehensive and precise. During the war years many of the maps were stamped “SECRET”, giving a wonderful example of how these maps reflect the firm British resolve and back bone of the era.

ltd_editions_Nov_2013_dated 4

In the 1950s, the maps underwent a brief period of using both orange and reddy-brown, producing some of the most beautiful meteorological maps of the century. Plus these are the last maps to have hand written data applied, after 1960 data was hand typed.

ltd_editions_Nov_2013_dated 5

1960 to 1979 another striking colour change, pale purple and green. As Britain progressed into the swinging sixty’s, new advances in acquiring data increased the detail on the maps, leading to fewer written descriptions of the weather.

Later_ltd_editions_Nov_2013 1Later_ltd_editions_Nov_2013 2

The 80’s the decade of PM Margret Thatcher, yuppies and chunky mobile phones. Things really started to change, not to be left behind the maps became computer generated, turning over a new modern synthesized image.

Later_ltd_editions_Nov_2013 3

Continuing through to 1995 with the contemporary minimalist transformation. Clean lines and a new arrangement of data, streamlined and in vogue, these maps marked the start of another new electronic generation.

Later_ltd_editions_Nov_2013 4Later_ltd_editions_Nov_2013 5

Finally entering into the 21st century, Britain’s weather maps became the High-Tec analysis of meteorological data will still see today. Adopting the latest Met Office logo, the weather maps arrived at 2008 as the 10th predecessor to the early 1919 maps we first featured.

These maps are truly generational, with every change in style reflecting the personality of the era.  As the designs change, you can also see the development of the iconic Met Office emblem, from the classic weather vane to the current logo.

Working with these beautiful maps we have found they tend to have a life of their own. Unfolding the history of the last century, many have the imprints of human contact. As most of the maps were not automated, the consistence of colour is not always reliable and often varies even within the same time and colour period. This all adds to the authenticity and personality of the maps, in a fascinating way.

So whether you wore a hand knitted tank top in the 1950’s, screamed at the Beatles in the 1960’s or laced up roller boots in the 1980’s, your time will be echoed in the charisma of these maps. From the polite and refined elegance of the early maps, to the functional, precise and inclusive maps of today. At Birthday Weather we quite literally have the right date for everyone!

', 'auto'); ga('set', 'forceSSL', true); ga('send', 'pageview');