#MakeGood Festival '14

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

This past weekend I attended the #MakeGood Festival at the Old Selfridges Hotel, the annual, marquee event organised by the School for Creative Startups (S4CS) for makers, crafters, creatives and small-business entrepreneurs.

School for Creative Startups
For those who may not already know, the S4CS offers a year-long, part-time practical training programme designed to support the launch, growth and/or improvement of creative businesses. Creative entrepreneurs are taught the fundamentals of starting and promoting their business, such as branding, marketing, selling online, pricing, protecting their IP, and raising money. To complement this education and support, financial assistance is also sometimes available in the form of a 'Launcher Loan', to provide that often much-needed capital at the outset of a new business venture.

I visited #MakeGood on it's first day and frantically did my best to take in as much as I could - from listening in on speaker sessions to visiting each maker's stall in the 'Market Square'. I managed to catch Doug Richard, the founder of S4CS, speaking about turning your ideas into reality, as well as part of a panel discussing how to fund your startup with IndieGogo (rewards crowd-funding) and CrowdCube (equity crowd-funding).

Makegood Festival Brand Collage

Here are my highlights to whet your appetite for next year (left to right, top to bottom):
  • A new innovation in disaster relief, bodopods are rapidly deployable, solid panel shelters that are durable and give privacy, comfort and security to displaced people. Though still in the prototype stage, the founder explained that he also has designs to make consumer products in the near future such as for camping and outdoor marquees.
  • Colombia's answer to France's Villebrequin is a new company called Seven-Cyan - designing premium men's swimwear that unifies sport and style, using high-quality fabrics at a relatively lower price point (~£60). Currently only available on-line, they have some exciting plans for a brick-and-mortar presence soon in the UK.
  • Zoe Murphy Design is the embodiment of her vision to 'love what belongs to you' by giving new life to furniture through upcycling and recycling. She particularly focuses on re-using mid-20th century pieces and patterns inspired by Formica-clad seaside cafes in her hometown of Margate, Kent. 
  • Founded by a second-generation card designer, bric-a-brac are cards to brighten up your day with a dose of eccentricity and humour. Cards are making a comeback and it feels extra special in this day and age to receive one. 
  • The friendly ladies at the Secret Date Club trade in special experiences, such as following a series of clues culminating in a sunset spot, meticulously planned to surprise you and a partner. They were quite persuasive that this would be an excellent idea for a first date too.
  • Cocoa Hernando create delicious, luxury-flavoured chocolate inspired by their world travels. My current personal favourite is the Moroccan dark chocolate with spearmint. Available in Harvey Nichol's and Selfridges, London. 
  • Natalia Komis' passion project is iam adventures, a creative travel adventures company targeting artists, entrepreneurs and social innovators. Tours are specifically designed to offer the space needed to re-charge your batteries and to gain perspective, inspiration and confidence. They recently held their first trip to Nepal and plan to have UK-based travels this Summer.    
  • Superglue are an exciting, boutique experience and events agency based here in London. They told me of an interesting pop-up golf course that is due to launch later this year in Shoreditch, which I'm sure will be one not to miss. 
  • To round off, I sampled some of Eddie's Chilli Jam for good measure - a nice little condiment company for savoury food, who is already building a grassroots following.
Good luck to everyone at the festival and look forward to hopefully seeing them grow in the months to come!


  1. Great post Arya! I'll definitely check out a few of the small launching businesses you mention. Also I agree with you, cards ARE totally making a come back. Happy blogging! Jesse.

    1. Glad you think so too Jesse and thanks for being the first reader to comment on the blog!

  2. Hi Arya Thank you for featuring bric-a-brac! May I add this link to my blog site?!

    1. Hi Lex! Yes, please do if you like and thanks for stopping by :-)


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