The Mollie Makes Handmade Awards 2019 were bigger and better than ever. It was amazing to see so many talented designer-makers in one room, sharing their expertise and celebrating their creativity! We had inspiring guest speakers such as Leona from Indie Roller, Katie Jones, Lauren Aston Designs and Kalkidan Legasse from Wowsancho, and a gorgeous painted backdrop by Emotional Waterfall.
Plus, the amazing Toni and Zabbi of In Colourful Company took everyone on a beautiful walk around our home town of Bristol.
Judges included Tilly Walnes, Katie Leamon, Suzanne Harmer, owner of This Modern Life, Reena Rai from Pinterest and our Editor Yvette Streeter. It was a tough decision but they picked six worthy winners who you’re going to want to follow immediately. Keep scrolling to discover the 2019 winners and start getting your application ready for the Mollie Makes Handmade Awards 2020!
Small Business Award Winner – The Completist
The judges were so impressed by how far Jana and Marko’s brand had come in such a short space of time. Their prizes include a pop-up shop at West Elm, a two year membership to Designers / Makers and an advertising package in Mollie.
“We absolutely loved taking part in the Mollie Makes Handmade Awards – what an amazing day spent with an incredible bunch of creatives! And to top it off with a win was so very exciting, especially considering how tough the competition in our category was. It’s absolutely huge for us to be in front of the judges who we admire so much, and this win is going to take us to the next level of our business, and hopefully on to the desks of many more people!”
Established Business Winner – Ragged Life
Elspeth’s built an amazing brand around sharing her skills and passion for rag rugging, updating a traditional craft and enthusing the judging panel. She wins a stand at The Handmade Festival, a mentoring session with Tilly Walnes, and a Mollie Insta takeover.
“Even being shortlisted for the Mollie Makes Handmade Awards had me eeking with excitement, but my business Ragged Life winning the Best Established Business Award was just a dream come true. Thanks to the Mollie team, I’ll be showcasing my contemporary rag rug kits at The Handmade Festival later this year and I can’t wait to show people how fun it is to turn old clothing into beautiful, sustainable homeware. Hopefully I’ll see you there!”
Handmade Champion Winner – The Mamahood
The judges were particularly impressed by The Mamahood’s dedication to connecting and supporting mother makers and mum-run businesses, creating a strong community. And, they were excited by their potential to expand in the future. As winners, they’ll get a mentoring session with Suzanne of This Modern Life, a Pinterest bootcamp, and a feature on the Mollie Makes blog.
“I’m so delighted to have won the Handmade Champion Award. It means so much to me that The Mamahood – and all the brilliant small creative businesses within its membership – are recognised by the imitable Mollie Makes judges! The Mamahood exists to champion and support the incredible creative talent of small businesses run by mothers – a huge number of them starting out and creating at the kitchen table. Thank you, Mollie Makes. We won’t stop until all these brilliant handmade businesses are sold on the high street. The future just got a whole lot more exciting!”
Best Illustrator Winner – Liz Harry Design
Liz’s fun aesthetic, clear idea of her brand and authentic message won over this year’s judging panel. Her prizes include a stand at New Designers, a mentoring session with Katie Leamon, and an illustration opportunity in Mollie.
“The day of the Awards was so amazing! I couldn’t believe how many wonderful makers there were – I felt honoured to be there. My nerves were pretty high all morning until after my presentation to the judges. I was so happy to win with such a high standard in my category! It’s really brought me a greater sense of community since attending, and helped cement in my mind that our businesses are as unique as we are, so it’s OK to find our own path and do things the way that feels ‘right’ for us.”
Best Workshops Winner – The London Loom
Francesca’s love for weaving, and for encouraging others to get creative, won over the judges. She also recognises that craft is a huge tool for positive mental health. We all wanted to attend one of her workshops! She wins a workshop at West Elm, and a feature in Mollie.
“It can be extremely isolating and stressful running a small creative business and the lovely team at Mollie Makes do an amazing job of celebrating all that hard work. Winning my category has given me the vindication that all of the time, energy and passion that I pour into my business is worth it. Receiving my award has given me the energy and conviction to explore new workshops and ideas for my business that I had previously been too nervous to put in motion.”
Product of the Year Winner – Ella Masters
The Product of the Year category was voted for by all of you! The winner was Ella’s gorgeous vases which are inspired by her #ella365project. Aiming to spread positivity and raise awareness for mental health charities, her painted ceramics will be shot in the Mollie studio, featured in the mag, and appear on our Instagram.
“It’s been such a wonderful couple of days after winning my Award – the vases have sold out, which is amazing. I had to make a choice recently about which way I wanted my business to head. It was scary, but I’m slowly working towards my dream of living my best creative life. It’s not easy, but I’m determined to reach for what I want. Thank you to everyone who voted and renewed my confidence.”
We hope you’ll be inspired to enter to Mollie Makes Handmade Awards next year. If you’re in need of some creative projects and ideas to get you started follow us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Oh and subscribe to Mollie Makes.