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Why You Should Fund This Gleaming Tribute to Toronto Makers

We have until Dec 2 to back an ambitious Kickstarter campaign for Toronto Makes, a glossy 288-page homage to the top creatives in the city.

By Sara Cunningham
Photography by Saty + Pratha / Family of Things

What does every coffee table deserve? Ask Family of Things, a boutique strategy and design studio, and they’ll tell you: a printed tribute to Toronto design.

Not just any book, mind you, but a 288+ page tome replete with profiles and colour portraits of 50 local makers, hand-picked by the studio to represent every facet of inventiveness in the city, from mouth-watering food design to honest woodworking.

The book will be called: Toronto Makes.

To make it happen, Family of Things started a Kickstarter campaign in partnership with the local makers their project has energized. Peter Coolican of Coolican & Co is on board, offering backers a Palmerston counter height stool and book for $635, while Mima ceramics gifts an ivory vase and set of mugs as an accompaniment to the hardcover for $185.


If all goes to plan, Toronto Makes will be published in Fall 2019 by Figure 1 publishing in Vancouver, around the same time that supporters receive their rewards from the featured makers.

Family of Things is comprised of three women: creative director Amy Czettisch, art director Jill Redden, and finance director Gloria Cheung. We asked the trio about the book project via email.

How did you come up with the idea for Toronto Makes?
We were looking for a way to celebrate beautifully made, high-quality goods being created in Toronto and the people and stories behind them. Over the last 15 years in our business, we have had the privilege of seeing all sorts of entrepreneurial ventures and exciting stories. We wanted to tell a visually contemporary story about their wares, as much as we wanted to tell their business stories and profile the makers. In our experience, knowing the backstory/history of an object brings value that is unparalleled with a mass-made product.

Why do you think this is the right moment to publish a book about Toronto makers?
The timing for this book felt right, as consumers are increasingly interested in learning more about their purchases. At the same time, our community of makers is broadening. They produce the highest quality products that range from swim trunks to wooden stools and dairy-free gelato, plus doughnuts and custom doors.

How did you choose the creatives you’re featuring?
For years, Family of Things has been following the Toronto maker community. It gave us a great starting point to find the creatives we wanted to feature. From there, we were introduced to other creatives who were recommended to us; the community is very well connected. By visiting local shops, we discovered high-quality products being made in the city.

Were they excited about the project?
Yes, many of them felt that the timing is right for this and loved the crossover and diversity of the industries represented in the book (food to fashion to beauty to furniture to interiors). They were ready to share their personal stories in this new format.


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