As the year comes to a close, we’d like to take a look back and recap all the incredible things that made 2014 such a great year for Freunde von Freunden – from new team members to expanded collaborations, so we’re going to try to keep it short.
2015 is just around the corner, so we’re looking back at what we’ve done this year, we checked the numbers to come up with an overview of our year. Here’s a summary of the best of FvF’s best in 2014.
Above all, a huge thank you to our readers, guests, friends, family, clients partners and supporters – and especially to our dedicated FvF contributors worldwide. Our diverse team means that our interviews, articles and posts are coming from uniquely international perspectives, from the friends of friends that actually live, work and play in the cities they’re writing about. We continue to expand and share stories from over 200 contributors in 75 cities, and every continent on the globe. (Okay, except Antarctica, but we’ll get there.)
FvF Around the World in 2014
Our core team in Berlin Mitte grew as well – we met Robbie as he was shooting our collaborations for Cereal, we welcomed him to the team as Head of Photography. Effie, Alicia and Leonie joined our editorial team to continue to expand our editorial content and scope. Marietta tirelessly develops new concepts and collaborations. As a filmmaker, Amy has brought her talents to the team, making our features more interactive with unique films. Brian is the enthusiastic mind behind our new online shop. Lilly keeps the connection with our readers via social media and the endlessly patient Marie joined us as a graphic designer.
Our collaborations with our mother company MoreSleep evolved as well – together we developed Companion Magazine for 25hours Hotels. Showcasing the talents of both creative groups in three editions of a full color print magazine featuring the stories of local creatives from our network in the five cities where 25hours hotels are located throughout Europe.
All these intrepid new minds meant that new ideas were abound in the offices – we expanded FvF Cooks internationally, and with more recipes, interviews, videos, and mouth-watering images in our newly launched lunch and weekend brunch series. Out of our team of passionate travelers, we started FvF Explores, highlighting the cities and places our contributors are passionate about. And finally, we started taking a look at the personal stories behind the craftsman who make the unique objects we see in so many of our stories in FvF Crafts.
We got off the Internet and launched our second book “Friends” in ten cities internationally where we met FvF readers, contributors, and followers from Tokyo to Amsterdam to LA. Including 23 cities, 45 stories, over 400 photos and 38 photographers, “Friends” takes the concept of our first book, “Berlin,” global.
After receiving countless inquiries from readers about this or that object photographed in a portrait, Freunde von Freunden ventured into the world of e-commerce with the launch of the FvF Shop. Offering a unique selection of products created in exclusive collaborations with FvF from our creative network around the globe. We’ll be growing in the coming year, with more carefully curated products, it’s our goal to offer an expanded connection to the stories we tell.
We extended our explorations of the world of design in a new collaboration with Vitra, publishing 20 portraits of creatives who share our love for the pieces produced by the Swiss manufacturer. On the 28th of February we opened the long-awaited FvF Apartment. Based on Vitra’s collage concept and FvF’s vision of urban living, it’s a multi-faceted space created to serve not only as a platform for innovative products from friends and partners. Spanning the breadth of curated exhibitions, design lectures, unique workshops led by industry experts, student competitions and intimate gatherings, the event calendar for 2015 will broaden the scope of how FvF and Vitra engage and inspire the creative community.
This isn’t the only partnership we set in motion in 2014 – with Mercedes’ mb! magazine we continued to publish stories highlighting creatives with their own Mercedes; in Vienna we continued highlighting the new projects and concepts supported by departure, the creative center of the Vienna’s business agency, publishing our 17th story; and we developed our MINI City Guides in five cities across Germany. The list goes on – Montblanc, Filippa K, Airbnb, Design Hotels, Unseen, Sennheiser, Deutsche Bank, Marrakech Biennale, & Other Stories and USM were all valuable collaborative partners in our search for unique narratives.
We developed some wonderful media relationships this year as well. Our ongoing expansion was helped by the relationships we forged with Spiegel Online in our Friends of Cars series, as well as Zeit Magazin Online, Zeit Online Hamburg, Elle Online, FormFiftyFive, Design Made in Germany and I Love You Magazine.
The Team’s Favorite Portraits
Joris Brouwers & Nicky Zwaan
Our Readers’ Favorite Portraits
These are the portraits that got tens of thousands of page views from our readers across the globe.
Gwen & Gawie Fagan
Charlotte Rey & Duncan Campbell
Our Readers’ Favorite Workplaces
From around 40 stories where inspiring creatives showed us their workplaces, the three most visited studios are found in Barcelona, Amsterdam and Copenhagen.
Our Readers’ Favorite FvF Explores
We expanded our bespoke explorations of various areas along with intriguing individuals, from Rotterdam and Graz to California.
The Schorem Haarsnijder En Barbier in Rotterdam
The Mojave Desert in California
Graz, Styria with Rachael Vance
Most Liked Blog Posts
We came across some charming, innovative and just plain brilliant ideas this year, which we featured on our blog. Here are the most popular of 2014.
Micro, DIY, and sustainable. Tim and Hannah’s cabin in Lake Tahoe is a physical manifestation of concepts that ruled 2014.
In New York, graphic designer Lauren Hom letters lunch boards the old fashioned way in exchange for a meals, later documenting her work on Will Letter for Lunch.
The often unnoticed potted corner gardens in the concrete jungle of Tokyo.
Favorite Photos from our Travel Blog
We traveled far and wide, from Marrakech to Rio, here were your favorite images from our travel journals.
Medersa el-Atarine in Fes
Impression of the Marrakech Biennale
Most Liked Instagram Photos
On a daily basis, we posted behind the scenes, highlights from our stories and beautiful shots from our travels. The most liked ones come down to a cheeky cat, bright interior in Tokyo and a stunning landscape.
Katie Paterson’s cat
Book Launch Party in Tokyo
Most Watched Videos of 2014
From artists to surfing, our talented FvF team of filmmakers brought us some exciting portraits in HD.
Berlin-based artist Katharina Grosse in her studio.
The visual world that inspires musician and co-Founder of SOLFO Anja Plaschg in Penzing, Vienna.
Dustin Humphrey, surf photographer and director of Deus ex Machina, explores his paradise with us in Canggu, Bali
Followers and Growth on Social Media
2014 was a huge year for Freunde von Freunden. Thanks to our global network and readership, our numbers doubled on almost all of our social media platforms. Here are our numbers across the board.
Thank you for inspiring us to continue to bring you creative portraits, travel experiences, cooking stories and collaborations the world over.
The entire team would like to thank you for your support, feedback, motivation and most importantly, your inspiration. We are looking forward to a healthy, prosper and peaceful 2015!
The entire FvF team.
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