Small Manufacturers from Europe click for more

Shackleton design Co Banjolele Banjo Ukulele
Shackleton Concert Banjolele
Photo courtesy the Shackleton Design & Manufacturing Company
Throughout the world there are small Ukulele manufacturing firms, maybe a luthier who has expanded the operation and taken on some staff, maybe a number of craftsmen who have got together in some form of co-operative. However it started these manufacturers usually make very high quality instruments even if the Ukulele is not the firms main output. Also there are some larger instrument making firms, again more famous for other instruments but have made a few Ukuleles over the years

Emerald Guitars

Founded by a man called Alistair Hay in Donegal, Ireland some time around 2001, this firm specialise in carbon fibre instruments, primarily Guitars but the have made custom Mandolins and at least one custom Harp Ukulele and would willingly make more if asked. Also one of their standard catalogue is an 18 inch scale 12 string Guitalele.

Shackleton Banjos

Founded in Norwich, England in 2013 as the Great British Banjo Co. on the back of a Kickstart campaign, this family run enterprise has had a name change (to The Shackleton Design & Manufacturing Company), and expanded its catalogue to include all sorts of merchandise including clothing, boots, beer and furniture. The concept for this expansion is Made in England and themed around Ernest Shackleton the early 20th c. Antarctic explorer but the original product was handmade Banjos and in this range there are Concert Banjoleles of varying levels of decoration, (they say they will do other scale lengths as custom options).

Voodoo Guitars

The firm is based in Rome, Italy and I don't know how large it it but I have seen two names mentioned, (Dario Ferrari and Matteo Gheardi), so I'm guessing at least two of them. There is not a lot of information on the website but they muse have been going since before 2008 according to the facebook page. What I can see is they make mainly electric Guitars but have featured Soprano Ukuleles in their main catalogue since 2014 that they call the "Vukulele". (again from the facebook page it looks like they do more repair than manufacture?)

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