Meet Amy Sellick, director at Made by Pen — the collaborative brand on everyone’s lips.
Made by Pen (Pen) is an Australian product design studio founded on the principles of good design and innovative simplicity. Partnering with Australia’s most inspired designers, architects and makers, Pen delivers products that are authentic, well-resolved and set to last a lifetime.
“Pen was formed to bring innovative and affordable homewares to design-lovers,” says Amy Sellick, director at Made by Pen. “As a studio, we have committed to collaborating with Australian designers and craftspeople to promote Australian design to the global market.”
It is this passion for collaboration and superior design that sets Made By Pen products apart. Far from cookie-cutter commodities, each item is conceptually rigorous and aesthetically elegant. “We are motivated by progress,” explains Amy. “Pen’s studio collection is designed to make the places we work, live and play in more functional, beautiful and evolved.”
As a studio, Pen considers what is missing from the market and fills the gap with outstanding pieces, such as the chic Sway lamp, the contemporary Linea table-top organiser, Alas wall hook and The Dog Room, one of Pen’s most popular designs. “We worked with Michael Ong, an award-winning Melbourne architect, to create a functional and beautiful space for people’s dogs,” Amy notes. “Our original run of the product sold out and we thought we had saturated the market. We had underestimated the appeal of the product and people were constantly asking us to produce more. We decided to, but the second time around we tried to put more ‘good’ into the product. That was our first partnership with Help Manufacturing (a Queensland-based not-for-profit that specialises in providing opportunities for people with disabilities) and that really set the stage for further collaboration.”
Underpinned by the success of their collaborative relationships, Pen partners with designers and architects who can visually transform their idea or narrative into a design. “To make our designs into products, we need to forge partnerships with a huge number of manufacturers,” elaborates Amy. “For us, relationships are pivotal to our collection outcome, which is why we seek likeminded people to partner with. To date, we have chosen talented, forward-thinking people such as Nick Rennie, Jim Hannon-Tan, Helen Kontouris and Michael Ong.”
So, what’s next for Pen? The team is working with a Melbourne-based designer to create an object inspired by time spent at home and the need for a peaceful, green existence against the backdrop of the pandemic. Help Manufacturing will again be called on to bring the piece to fruition and continue Pen’s dedication to the greater good. “We believe that, if you work as hard as you can to do and be good in your process, the products you create will be imbued with your invested positivity,” concludes Amy. “We spend time and effort finding people with this same view, from our designers through to our production partners. We don’t want to work with people who simply want to trade a product for the most money possible. We want people who are happy doing good. It’s our sincere hope that everyone involved in Pen’s process, especially the final consumer, experiences the good in our products.”
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