Andrea Bury, Part I

October 30, 2018

Andrea Bury, Part I

Andrea Bury
Founder and CEO, Abury Collection
Location: Berlin, Germany

Andrea Bury founded Abury after an inspiring trip to Marrakesh that compelled her to find a way to preserve the artistry, skills and passion of local craftsmen that seemed to be losing relevance amidst the growing prevalence of fast fashion and consumerism.

Abury brings together exciting designers with traditional artisans from remote, inspiring cultures. The exchange of knowledge between the old and traditional with the new and cutting edge creates a new context, giving crafts a new life, and injecting design with an emotional component that’s been missing in recent times. Abury goes beyond this dual relationship by caring for the whole supply chain, supporting the village communities, bringing in work opportunities and preserving traditions. On top of this, Andrea and her team give back the same number of production hours in education hours to the communities, for every product sold.

Andrea didn’t stop there. To find the best designers in the world, she and her team created the Abury Design Experience (ADEx)– the first global accessories design contest that offers designers the opportunity to go to a culture and work with traditional artisans for up to 3 months.

What keeps you busy?
I start my day by doing sports first thing in the morning and then I prepare freshly pressed fruit and vegetable juice – this is my power source for the day! We open our store at 11am. If I’m not traveling, I go to the shop and meet with the team until we close at 8pm. Evenings are usually calm. I’m lucky to have a partner who’s a great and experienced chef so I often get spoiled in the evening.

 

From the early days to what's currently on your plate?
My dream was to become a Communications Director in a big corporation. I tried to earn as much experience as possible in the different fields of communication (PR, advertising, events management, corporate identity etc.), only to realize that I didn’t want to work for a big corporation any longer. I then started my own communications agency, Calliope.This paved the way for what happened 8 years later when I moved to Marrakesh and renovated the Anayelariad. The Anayela, is the inspiration for what I’m doing today.
 
At the moment, we’re developing new collections. At the same time, we’re always trying to better our services for our customers.
 
The rhyme or reason
When I lived in Marrakesh, it was the first time that I actually really saw and felt how lucky I was to be able to go where I wanted, to learn, and to use my skills. I saw that there, people who have amazing skills just don’t have the opportunity to use them to earn a decent living or to send their children to school. I believe that everybody has amazing skills and that they just need an environment where they can blossom. To create and provide this kind of environment for people is what keeps me and our great team going!

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One day, I'll look back and laugh at this...

When I moved to London, I lost my job after 5 months and had to look for a way to survive. I applied at one of the famous English members clubs as a hostess. I got rejected because I was not fluent enough in English. I ended up working at the cloak room of that club. It was actually a great time but my parents got really worried about my career.

 

These days, there are still always quite a few bumps on the road but with each bump, you learn. Working with many different cultures from all over the world offers challenges but it’s also fun and enriching.

When the going gets tough

I am usually a very positive person and I believe that you grow from each tough situation… at least that’s what I keep telling myself.

 

Full speed ahead
What keeps me going is the positive spirit and the amazing support from the team and people around me. The next step is bringing the next collection in to reality and then starting the next edition of the Abury Design Experience.

The moments that make it worth it

To see people starting to believe in themselves and their skills. To see things starting to move without you having to initiate it.

 

#Hero

My grandma

 

Words to live by

“Smile a lot when you are young, to get happy wrinkles when you are old.” A free translation of what my grandmother always when I was young.

 

The Dream

The Dream is to work with many different designers and craft communities from many different cultures from all over the world and to one day be able to bring them all together in a real Craft Skills Summit.

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Continue reading Part II of Andrea's feature here.
All media courtesy of Andrea Bury and Abury Collection.

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