Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Makers & Brothers

This is old news to a lot of you by now I'm sure, but in the final weeks of 2011 brothers Jonathan and Mark Legge launched Makers & Brothers, an online design and craft retailer. Makers & Brothers puts an emphasis on the useful and beautiful, the processes of making and producing, and the 'sometimes nicely odd'. The site elevates the ordinary and reveals the extraordinary, through a careful curation of beautiful functional objects and quirky gems across a variety of scales and sensibilities. Choosing favourites on Makers & Brothers isn't easy, but I gave it a shot...

This isn't the first time a powder-coated steel object has featured on this blog, and is unlikely to be the last. Products that utilise this process always seem to me to strike a great balance between an industrial look and a fun feel. Welsh designer David Weatherhead's 'Hello Sunshine' letter rack, pictured above, is no different. Immensely simple, 'Hello Sunshine' would even make a stack of bills look good.

Makers & Brothers also stocks a small number of products from Falcon Enamelware - a British company founded in 1920 to create long-lasting, hard-wearing products for the kitchen, and after over ninety years of producing instantly recognisable ice white enamel objects with a navy-blue rim, it's safe to say their designs are timeless. This bake set sees that trademark navy-blue rim line a series of really nicely-proportioned baking pans and pie tins. Great packaging too.

There's something quite homey and wholesome about Makers & Brothers. Its items for sale are stripped back and pared down, and useful rather than merely ornamental. It gives smaller producers a bigger platform, and is beginning to widen its function to including interviews with its makers and insights into their processes. Makers & Brothers sees what it does as a 'curation' of everyday design, and everyday design is something which often lacks the consideration and curation other forms of expression receive. Makers & Brothers is retail, but a littler richer.