CROWDYHOUSE celebrates its third birthday
This month CROWDYHOUSE is celebrating its third birthday and the launch of their brand new website. CROWDYHOUSE started three years ago as a crowdfunding platform for design, transformed into a rebel with a cause within the existing design industry. CROWDYHOUSE works with selected raw and talented designers with an exciting uniqueness and connects them to the crowd. Founders Mark Studholme and Suzan Claesen are looking back at their journey and explain what the ‘new’ CROWDYHOUSE is all about.
Three years ago CROWDYHOUSE started in the uprise of the crowdfunding market. Mark and Suzan, whom both have a background in the furniture and design industry, have a lot of passion and compassion for what they call the ‘undiscovered designers’. This group of young and talented upcoming designers is main group they facilitate. When CROWDYHOUSE launched as a crowdfunding platform the aim was to help these designers raise funding to set up a production line and directly sell to customers.
Mark & Suzan, co-founders of CROWDYHOUSE
The platform kicked off with 20 different products online, based on the crowdfunding principles each needing a minimum number of orders before the designer would start the production. Shortly after the launch CROWDYHOUSE grew fast in number of products and designers to fund on their site. The response from customers on the products was very positive, it became clear that there is a huge consumer need to buy something different from all mainstream design products out there. However, selling the products through crowdfunding turned out not to add a lot of value. Many designers were able to deliver directly and were mainly looking for a suitable platform to sell their work.
After taking in these learnings Mark and Suzan took away all the parts, including the crowdfunding concept, that were distracting from the most important and exciting part of CROWDYHOUSE, the raw and talented designers they bring together on their platform. With the launch of the new website the vision for CROWDYHOUSE has never been more clear.
‘When the right people are gathered in the right way, the whole becomes greater, perhaps much greater, than the sum of its parts. Gathering the right people at the right time in their lives, in the right combination of talents, is our core business.’ – Suzan Claesen
Mark and Suzan feel the commercial system of the traditional design industry has led to a rather uniform pool of established designers, working for a rather uniform pool of well-known brands, selling to a rather uniform pool of consumers. With CROWDYHOUSE they are working towards a world filled with a wider variety of design. That’s why they open their doors to design talents that are blessed with an exciting uniqueness. Even for the super edgy ones with a small commercial audience. Not just any upcoming designer is suitable to join their club. Their creations must be unforeseen and outspoken. They must be skilled enough to produce high quality products suitable for daily usage. And most importantly, they should be absolutely passionate about their work.
Beyond the limits of the traditional design conventions CROWDYHOUSE creates the right conditions for upcoming designers to be discovered. They encourage designers to develop design that is off the beaten track, and offer a platform that intensifies their designs and gives them instant credibility. CROWDYHOUSE creates a platform for designers where they are free to add some swag to the design industry. By removing the obstacles between designers and design fans worldwide their goal is to enhance a more personal connection. Currently CROWDYHOUSE is selling products to customers in 58 different countries worldwide.
‘Having talent is something. Yet marketing it and getting noticed is completely different. We see designers with skills that are both undeniable and unparalleled, but they still seem to stay undiscovered. It’s exactly these raw talents we want to connect to the crowd.’ – Mark StudholmeMany designers that joined CROWDYHOUSE at the very start have experienced the impact the platform has had on the growth and recognition of their studios. Tjalle Niehof and Jasper Kuil from studio ‘Van Tjalle en Jasper’ are a great example of upcoming designers on their way making name in Europe. They were one of the first designers to join CROWDYHOUSE. Over the past years their studio grew in popularity in the industry and sales through the platform allowed them to further develop their business. Today they are a profitable studio selling their work all throughout Europe. The role of CROWDYHOUSE is giving them the needed exposure connecting them to the right people interested in their work.
‘CROWDYHOUSE played a big part in us being discovered as upcoming design studio’ – Japser Kuil
Tjalle and Jasper from studio ‘VanTjalle&Jasper’
For ceramic designer Jasmin Djerzic, CROWDYHOUSE was one of his first online sales places. He produces his products himself in his workshop. From the moment Jasmin joined CROWDYHOUSE he quickly noticed people discovered his work through the exposure on the platform. He started selling many products and even struggled to keep up production. Jasmin’s vision is that design should be affordable for everyone. Right this moment Jasmin is expanding his production line to make his products available for a larger market.
‘I am proud to be part of the CROWDYHOUSE family, it is fantastic to be able to present my work among so many like minded designers’– Jasmin Djerzic
These designers are on their way to take the next step, a level up from an upcoming to an established studio. Mark and Suzan believe it is a good thing designers spread their wings and have ambition to grow big, even when they started small on CROWDYHOUSE. At the same time they welcome new upcoming design talent they connect to the crowd.
What to expect from CROWDYHOUSE the coming years? CROWDYHOUSE believes the design industry needs some spice. They aim to do that by going off the beaten track, and add some swag to the design industry. CROWDYHOUSE wants people to feel instead of think, to laugh out loud instead of giggle and to be orange instead of grey. Within the traditional design industry CROWDYHOUSE is the rebel with a cause, the real deal with a feel.
Keep an eye on the new website where CROWDYHOUSE will continue to surprise you with the most unique products from Europe’s most exciting designers.
Suzan Claesen – Co-founder of CROWDYHOUSE
French Press Release – PDF
English Press Release – PDF
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