Arts & Crafts (also referred to as “A&C”) was launched as a music company in 2003 by friends Jeffrey Remedios, a former Virgin Records executive and Kevin Drew, who co-founded flagship group Broken Social Scene (BSS) with Brendan Canning. The partnership was originally intended as a vehicle for self-release and artist management of Broken Social Scene’s breakthrough album You Forgot It in People, and the structure quickly formed as a platform to release albums and manage the careers of artists directly affiliated with members of Broken Social Scene. In addition to BSS albums the labels first releases were by Stars, Jason Collett, Feist, Apostle of Hustle and Valley of the Giants.

In 2005 The Most Serene Republic was the first band unrelated to Broken Social Scene to sign to Arts & Crafts and officially marked a shift of scope broader than the projects related to Broken Social Scene.

A&C began its foray into the digital music business launching in 2005, a boutique web store that offered digital downloads and Arts & Crafts related merchandise. They were one of the first labels to launch a digital download store.

In 2004, Remedios expanded the operation into Montreal basing himself out of the offices of DKD who later partnered to form Arts & Crafts International, releasing the gold selling album Set Yourself on Fire by Montreal based group, Stars.

Arts & Crafts were among the first labels to offer a strategy for combating advance music leaks by offering Stars follow-up album In Our Bedroom After the War for sale before promotional copies were ever manufactured and distributed by issuing wide release as a digital download only 3 days following album completion.