Whenever the pandemic hasn't dominated the national conversation, this year there has been a clear focus on racial inequality. To that end, we're proud to celebrate the exceptional work that a growing number of Black-owned businesses are producing today. It is their work and success that ensure future change for generations to come.
Naturally a great place to start is at Etsy, whose virtual hub showcases a host of talented independent designers and craftspeople from around the globe. Many of these are of African descent, who create beautiful home accessories inspired by their rich cultural heritage and traditions.
Whether you're treating yourself or looking for something unique as a Christmas gift, the site is a treasure trove of ideas and inspiration. As with all products available in the Etsy marketplace, the majority offer worldwide delivery, so do check each seller to see if they'll ship to you.
6 exceptional Black-owned businesses on Etsy
Designer Kalandra Macfarquar creates beautiful and useful accessories from jesmonite, a composite material.
Based in Birmingham, England, she creates a wide range of contemporary handmade items in a variety of colors, from coasters to trinket dishes, as well as decorative rainbow ornaments and mini trays. Decorative themes include a Black Lives Matter-inspired collection in warming ethnic tones.
Founded in Brooklyn, xN Studio - named after founder and Columbia graduate Nasozi Kakembo - specialises in colorful African-inspired prints from her Ugandan heritage, with a NYC urban twist.
Expect to find a whole host of cushions and pillow covers, as well as tote bags and ubiquitous face masks in bold and beautiful batik and wax prints.
3. Afton by Palm
Afton by Palm was founded by Bonissa Moore, a self-taught artist from Buckinghamshire, England.
Bonissa hand crafts jewellery dishes and earrings from clay, together with a range of greeting cards and art prints for the home. Everything is handmade in small batches and decorated in soft, subtle neutral shades of pink, beige and cream.
4. Can Did Art Accessories
Candice Cox, founder of CanDidArt, is a trained jewellery designer based in Brooklyn.
Though the majority of her products are naturally jewellery-based, her love of African-inspired print and pattern is evident on her beautifully crafted quilts and greeting cards, too.
The reversible quilts are perfect for a nursery, which can then be hung on the wall afterwards when they're eventually outgrown.
5. Bespoke Binny
A self-confessed lover of sewing, London-based Natalie Manima is Bespoke Binny.
Growing up, her Ghanian heritage surrounded her with a myriad of vibrant African patterns and prints, which she now crafts into a selection of home accessories, from lampshades and blankets, to pillows, placemats and kitchen textiles.
A finalist in the Etsy Design Awards 2020, if you sign up to her mailing list, you will receive 15 per cent off your first order.
6. Hortiki Plants
Founded by Victoria LeBeaux, who holds a Ph.D in Sustainable Agriculture, Hortiki Plants produces eco-friendly container kits to help you grow your own fruit and vegetables at home.
Based in Washington DC, Victoria is keen to educate and equip beginner and small space gardeners of all ages with everything they need to cultivate their own home crops.