As we slowly ease into 2022, we've taken some time to reflect on 2021 and everything the year had in store for us. Despite the impact of COVID-19, we managed to join in maker's markets around London as well as launch exciting new projects and collections.
Thank you to all our supporters, friends, and customers for sticking with us in 2021 - your support has been vital in helping us stay true to our social mission: empowering makers and preserving artisan traditions across the globe.
Here's a look back at some highlights from the past year.
In June, we unveiled our new website - after months of hard work and collaboration with talented designers and illustrators. We loved our old site, but wanted to create a modern, streamlined website to carry us forward with our vision.
Our new website allows us to offer multi-currency options for our international supporters, and also allows us to showcase our ethos of craftsmanship and sustainability on a more modern platform.
The Return of London Pop-Ups
2020 proved to be a challenging year for small businesses in terms of opportunities for pop-up stores and local markets.
Prior to the pandemic, Artisan & Fox would participate in local, artisan markets and fairs in both London and Singapore. While pop-ups remain off the cards in Singapore for awhile, maker movements have slowly returned to London, and we were thrilled to join in a few markets this year!
We returned to the Greenwich Peninsula as part of SAMPLE Spring (April 2021) and SAMPLE Autumn (September 2021) and re-connected with old faces and new friends. We met Lisha from Thimble and Doll, as well as Miguel from Elm Road. We also participated in Pexmas for the first time in south London which was a blast with a strong community feel!
Our team member Rebecca showcasing Artisan & Fox at the Koppel Project Christmas Market.
In March, we launched our capsule collection made in collaboration with designer Lama El Desouky. The Equality Collection, our first unisex jewellery collection, proved to be a hit, and the Equality Gold Ring became one of our bestselling rings this year.
We collaborated with Afrika Tiss for a capsule collection featuring bold, bright jewellery made by Tuareg artisans in Burkina Faso. The Tuareg Collection was launched in May 2021.
Alongside the launch of our new website, we also launched our last jewellery collection from Afghanistan - Ode to Kabul. This jewellery collection was inspired by the poetry of Persian Master Saib-e-Tabrizi and featured original designs from our artisan partners in Kabul.
Cufflinks from the Equality Collection. Artisanal leather jewellery from the Tuareg Collection.
Return to Nepal
The idea for Artisan & Fox was conceived when our founder Jaron Soh was volunteering in Nepal after the devastating earthquake of 2015. One of the first collections Artisan & Fox launched was a series of silver jewellery pieces handmade by Silversmith Prem in his Bhaktapur atelier.
This year, we were pleased to partner with new artisans working in Kathmandu and showcase the latest craftsmanship to emerge from talented designers Tulja and Ishu. The Sikhara Range was crafted by artisans Sharmila and Rajendra and features innovative designs inspired by Nepal's iconic architecture as well as the powerful Himalayas.
Left: Artisan Rajendra in Kathmandu, Nepal. Right: Mandira Earrings, as made by Rajendra.
One of our goals for 2021 was to refresh and update our packaging along with the launch of our new website. Our team designed a series of teal boxes to send out for all online orders complete with our fox logo on the inside.
Due to feedback from our friends and customers, we also designed a set of Care Cards to include with all orders. Our Care Cards include tips on how to maintain and take care of your artisan pieces. We hope you like our new packaging!
The crisis unfolding in Afghanistan has been heartbreaking. While we know this is a small contribution, we will be donating all profits from the Ode to Kabul Collection as well as the Equality Collection to our non-profit partner, Turquoise Mountain.
Turquoise Mountain has been working in Afghanistan for over 15 years and has the ability to distribute aid and support to those who need it the most in their community. Many of our followers and audience have also contributed directly to the Turquoise Mountain fundraiser to help show their support.
Many of the artisans we worked with in Afghanistan have now left the country. However, Turquoise Mountain will begin working with the artisans that remain in Kabul, and we will soon be able to re-stock a few pieces from our Afghan collections. More info on that to come soon.
Moving Forward Into 2022
This year, we're excited to enter our fifth year of doing business. Starting Artisan & Fox has been an adventure - a journey that has brought the team all over the world. From meeting artisans in Vietnam, Afghanistan, Lebanon and more - working with the MADE51 team in Geneva and Frankfurt - we look forward to growing Artisan & Fox and unveiling new partnerships and designs for 2022.
Stay tuned for artisan collaborations, future collections, and designs for 2022.
Is there anything you would like to see more of? Let us know below in the comments!