Today I am trilled to spotlight on Art Rookie, a unique online platform that has a vast range of gifts perfect for those struggling to find a unique and fun Wedding gift for the happy couple on their wedding day.
The site supports British graduates, and up and coming UK artists and designers on their road to commercial success.
Each artist has its own shopfront to promote themselves, as well as being a part of the whole site, and gains a percentage of each item they sell.
They design and create. Art Rookie produce, package and post!
Art Rookie is all about developing British artistic talent and this is a start-up business opportunity for artists without any of the usual costs, and with everything to gain.
As well as hundreds of romantic and humorous designs perfect for that personal Big Day gift there’s also the facility to upload your own images or illustrations and have them made into anything from plates and clocks to cushions and framed prints.
I hand over to the Brand to tell you all about what they do…
Who are you, and what do you do?
We are Elizabeth Bush and Jodie Prince, and we are co-directors and co-founders.
Its an online sales platform where artists and designers join the site for free and upload their imagery onto a variety of product templates. Be it, homeware, fashion, art or phone accessories.
In short: they design, upload and sell and Art Rookie do the promoting, manufacturing, delivery and aftercare.
The idea is so that the artists and designers can focus on honing their talents and creating more pieces of art while we take the stress and worries onto our shoulders!
Each artist profits from their individual sales from the site and also wholesale opportunities.
When and why did you start your Company?
Art Rookie started in 2014 after we met over a coffee.
I (Liz) came from a printed textile design background, from creating hand painted silk prints for international fashion houses and suppliers, to starting my own silk-scarf brand, Elizabeth Kate, resulting in a small retail store off Carnaby Street in the West End.
As a young designer I gained a greater knowledge of the design industry while facing many struggles and learning curves.
I learnt ‘Us designers aren’t necessarily born business people, which helped spark the idea of a site where artists can join and face none of these initial struggles.
A site where artists and designers can focus on their talents and leave all business worry to the site.’
However, it was all well and good having this idea but I knew from working at Elizabeth Kate that I didn’t want to face this prospect alone, so put it on the backburner.
Yet, in a lucky twist of fate a couple of weeks later, II received a facebook message from Jodie, someone I had never met looking for advice into the silk scarf business.
Jodie’s background was in the world of fashion-styling. She had a glamorous career styling for the likes of Burberry, the X-Factor live shows and tour and other high-end editorial shoots, followed by a short career in personal styling.
Before her career started she graduated with a Photography career and was aware of the struggles she had to get noticed in such a competitive field.
It left her thinking, is there anything out there that can help artists at the initial stages of our development?
So one day, Jodie hung up her styling kit and was determined to push her photography further, so she had heard of me and my beautiful scarves, and thought she’d get in touch to seek advice, and in their local Costa we met.
Being brave (or stupid) I decided to blurt my initial ideas for what would later be, Art Rookie.
Luckily Jodie was enthusiastic about the idea and we started brainstorming straight away! By the end of the meeting it appeared we were going to take a leap of faith together and start Art Rookie.
What inspires you?
Our 1,000+ artists inspire us every day!! On average we get 10 artists join us a day, each submitting their artwork to us.
We have to personally vet each image uploaded to make sure that it fits the aesthetics of our site and retain a high standard.
Art Rookie is a community all seeking the same end goal, which is flying the flag for British talent and making their way into the commercial world a success.
You would be surprised to see the amount of talent we produce in the UK that goes un-noticed, each product on our site is unique and custom made to order, making us a one of a kind retail destination.
We are providing a unique gift for that someone special, with a story behind it, as well as supporting our future generation of artists.
Do trends influence your work?
Each artist is influenced by many different trends varying through the ages. So Art Rookie gets to see and learn of a huge mixture of trends on their pages!
What is your greatest achievement?
Our greatest achievement happens everyday when one of our artists sell a product!
We also love receiving great e-mails from our customers and artists that are so happy with Art Rookie, it brings us a great sense of achievement.
Also, we stood up and spoke about Art Rookie in front of a large audience at the Pulse trade show this year, if you’d seen their nerves before you would understand the accomplishment we felt when we completed the talk!
We are beginning to see Art Rookie pop up in a our local press regularly varying from The Metro, Guardian, Daily Mail, You Magazine, Fabulous on Sunday, Living Etc and more!
What do you see as the future of your Company?
Our next ambition is to eventually create a destination store for Art Rookie. It will be a one-stop shop that holds a retail store, gallery space and a communal area where artists and customers can interact with one another.
Not forgetting, a workshop where all production takes place. However, this is a future ambition and in the meantime we will test the water experimenting with pop-up shops and expanding our stockists.
We would love to elevate our artists work to a gallery space.
So before we reach our destination store, we will look to hold a few pop-up gallery events in the not too far future, where a selection of artists can have a chance to meet their new and existing customers and continue their commercial journey.
We will also expand our variety of products, introducing a possible wallpaper range and the rest we will keep under wraps for now… Fingers crossed!
Sometimes it can be a minefield trying to find something unique when choosing Wedding Gifts.
Whilst the norm can be useful, having a piece we can treasure is really special.
As well as Wedding gifts there is a multitude of amazing designs, beautiful homeware, and affordable artwork.
And the knowledge that you are helping up and coming designers is a very lovely bonus.
To Contact Art Rookie
Phone: 020 8504 1030