About Make it British Live!
Make it British Live! began in 2014 and was originally called Meet the Manufacturer.
The brainchild of Kate Hills, a former fashion buyer, who founded a website called Make it British in 2011 as a platform for promoting UK manufacturers and British-made brands.
Very quickly Make it British began receiving lots of enquiries from businesses looking to connect with UK fashion and textile manufacturers. At the same time manufacturers that Kate spoke to were still predominantly relying on word of mouth to find new customers.
Kate realised that the industry needed an event to bring them all together - and Meet the Manufacturer was born.
The first event took place in a small warehouse of 11,000 sqft at The Old Truman Brewery in East London. 56 exhibitors from across the industry took stands at the first show, and a two day conference programme for 250 delegates ran alongside.
Less than 5 months in the planning, and not having held an event before, Kate was unsure how many people would actually turn up...but she needn't have worried, the conference was a sell-out and there were queues around the block as over 2000 visitors waited to get into the trade show!
Now in its fifth year, the event is held in a five-hall space of 55,000 sqft at The Old Truman Brewery, over the road from the where the first event took place.
More than 5,000 visitors and 200 exhibitors are expected in 2018, showing the increasing demand for making in the UK and buying British-made products.
As well as buyers and designers from designer brands to high street retailers, the show attracts overseas visitors from 17 different countries, including Japan, Germany and Scandinavia, who all come to the event looking for authentic British-made products.
Make it British Live! - our new name
In 2018 we took the decision to rename the show to Make it British Live! to more accurately reflect the broad range of different businesses that exhibit.
We pride ourselves on being the only 100% British sourcing event and believe that our new name is a stronger reflection of our core values.
This annual conference and trade show is already proving a magnet for thousands of designers, manufacturers, retailers and academics since its launch five years ago and we’re confident that our rebrand will be the fanfare to attract even more progressive businesses looking to source locally and reshore their production back to the UK.