• It is only when you look back in life that you realise the great things you have achieved, consistence is a virtue of the strong.

    We are approaching the day of opening the registration to our Bournemouth BJJ Open 2015, and as a rule since our first event in 2004 I put all medals together and take photos to help promote the event. I have asked myself several times why do I do this..? Maybe I just like to play with the medals, maybe... The truth is, I put so much of my time into designing the medals knowing they will be given out, I just want to have my own personal time with them before they find a better home.

    Whilst doing this exercise I came across a box with some of our past events medals and found it amazing how much WE and our medals have evolved.

     

  • 2004

    Back in 2004 Jiu-Jitsu here in the UK was a newborn baby, and the rare and few events were giving out ordinary judo medals with a takedown engraved on them.

    We decided we wanted to give out something custom made so with our own design we approached a company in London and asked them to make a medal with our logo on. At the time the we did not have the headdress logo, it was a small indian face.

    On our second event, South Coast BJJ Open, we reused some of the medals from D&H and supplemented them with some ordinary off the shelf judo medals.

    South Coast BJJ did not have the support we wanted... Only 40 people attended the event and we decided to stop making events for a while.

     

  • 2010

    We had a long break from promoting events, and decided we were ready to take on a new challenge, this time we approached a company in Brazil to produce our medals.

    We were prepared to spend all our profits to give out decent medals, and so we did.

    The design was a real Jiu-Jitsu move and a Jiu-Jitsu black belt with the name of our event.

    It wasn't until the medals were delivered that we realised we had forgotten to ask the company to print the date on the medals. I was disappointed, even though our medals were the best medals ever given out here.

    In the same year I had the opportunity to redeem myself, and ordered a second set of medals from the same Brazilian company, this time with dates on!

    I started to notice that there were competition of competitions... As other event promoters here in the UK started to produce custom made medals too. I strongly believe that by improving our standards we unntentionally improved the standards of the whole of other events

     

  • 2011

    In 2011 we decided to move away from what everyone else was doing, (or copying) and we went with a simple design, our logo. Again we used the name of the event, day,month and year printed on the back as well as our website, so in the future our clients could refer back to the results list.

     

  • 2012

    By hand we sketched a medal like a kimono with a black belt tie, this was a popular design and events in other countries copied our medals, not just the idea, but the actual design... This made us realise how important our work was and how it was influencing people, even in Brazil where Jiu-Jitsu comes from. Again we used day, month and year printed on the back.

     

  • 2013

    Fiasco striked! We ordered our medals from the same supplier in Brazil months before the event in June, medals did not arrive on the agreed date, I started to get worried, and then ordered a second set... Again medals never showed up, one month before the event I was desperate not to lose face with our clients, but nothing could be done to have the medals delivered to us.

    To my embarrassment and upset, I was forced to buy a third set of medals, the "off the shelf ones", and so I did... Gave out the little medals to our clients and promised to send the missing ones by post once they arrive.

    Medals arrived one month later and I posted them to all winners.

    My supplier was to blame, he used fragile boxes and believe it or not, both boxes broke on transportation, hence the delay.

    I could not take the risk of losing face ever again... so I changed suppliers, but with a very short time until D&H I had no choice other than a flight to Brazil and collected the medals in person.

    This medals were similar in design to the previous year, but with a superior quality.

    This was the beginning of the printed ribbons, yes, again we paid more to give out a better looking medals to our clients.

     

  • 2014

    More improvements were needed, in thickness and size, as well as printed ribbons and a beautiful feather design.

    Definitely a new concept in medals, we were thinking outside the box... So much so we had an inspiration to create Who Is Afraid Of Mats5?!

    Now, with this side line event we were given out a small custom design medal on every fight.

    Still in 2014 we designed the medals incorporating a medieval symbol with a powerful meaning, the triskelion, to us the triskelion symbolised the changes and development of our lives. The symbol signifies progress.

     

  • 2015

    Now in 2015 we are coming up again with a concept of medals inspired by the Brazilian coat of arms, why? Although I have been here for almost 20 years, I have a British citizenship, I know I am still Brazilian, and this is my way to mark this moment in history.

    Our medals are different, we are the only event who print the exact date of our events and provide a web address for future reference, I strongly believe medals are nothing more than memories, I have a pile of medals at home from events that I took part in, and guess what? I can't remember when the events took place, I find this frustrating and annoying. Think about it...

  • We have improved tremendously since our first event and we will continue improving.

    Thank you all for the continued support over the years.

    Katie and Alex De Souza.