Last month, I spent a very inspiring day as part of the judging panel at the annual Mollie Makes Handmade Awards. I was honoured to be invited to take part for the third year in a row so I knew a little of what to expect. It's great to see the event developing every year with new aspects introduced (photo-walk, talks etc..) and the quality of entrants continuing to impress.
Each finalist had to pitch their business to the panel of seven judges which was no mean feat! They had 15 minutes to impress and answer challenging questions about their work and aspirations. Decisions were tough but after much deliberation (and a delicious lunch!) we came to an agreement over the winners.
Congratulations to all who took part and to the winners:
Winner: Ellie Kate Gray (Sew Cool Dolls)
Start Up Award
Winner: Susie Dorman (One & Eight)
Established Business Award
Winner: Zeena Shah
Creative Idea Award
Winner: Lucy Davidson (Peas & Needles)
Handmade Champion Award
Winner: Kate Underdown and Rachel Walker (The Fold Line)
To kick off the awards ceremony at the end of the day, fellow judges Rosie and Harriet from Tatty Devine gave a fantastic speech about their own creative journey and how they started out from humble beginnings, selling via markets to their current very successful business. We are delighted to be working with Harriet as guest curator for our Winter Market at Oval Space, Bethnal Green (19th November- trader applications now open).
The best thing about being part of the Mollie Makes Awards is getting to hear all the maker's stories. It's really inspiring to be part of such an energetic community of talented artists and makers - all busy creating their own products and services. One thing I would love to see more of for next year is male makers taking part - it's a great opportunity to get your brand out there to a wider audience so come on guys... get involved!