These highly regarded national awards, first launched in 2009, are based on an Online Public Vote for British and Irish designer makers with work represented in Selected, craft&design’s prestigious online gallery at www.craftmaker.co.uk. The online Public Vote, which is open from 1st January until 31st March, determines a shortlist of twelve makers in each of six categories, from which the craft&design panel select six finalists. Specialist Invited Judges, together with the craft&design panel, subsequently assess the work of the finalists to establish one Gold Award Winner, two Silver Award Winners and three Finalists in each category, with just one person being awarded the top accolade of craft&design Maker of the Year Award.
Craft and design is alive and thriving in Britain today and these Awards successfully promote the work of talented designer makers internationally - not only to those who already have an awareness of the skills involved, but also to people who may not have yet discovered this wealth of creative talent. The Online Public Vote enables people to browse the site, vote for their favourite makers – and at the same time discover new and exciting work by craftsmen and women unknown to them.
Whilst the Public Vote plays a vital role in deciding the finalists for each category, the Invited Specialist Judges and craft&design panel bring an important element of expertise to the proceedings.