Her studio is in Philadelphia; his is in Oakland, California. Vestige Home is a brother and sister, bi-coastal team designing and creating quality home goods that encourage people to take time in their lives to enjoy the simple pleasures of being together. I took some time to sit down with half of the duo, Nicole, in Philadelphia this past summer. Not only is she a part of Vestige Home the creator of amazing hand-crafted wooden cutting boards, that are in my Host Your Heart Out box, but she is also a talented interior designer, whose work in the shop and in home, I can't get enough of. Enjoy the interview below.
Let’s dive right in. How did you start your business/your craft/your art?
I began vestige HOME in 2011 when I was living in Jacksonville, Florida. I knew I wanted to start a creative business, but I wasn’t quite sure exactly what I wanted to do so I started making lamps out of reclaimed materials. I had also always had a passion for interior design and taken quite a few classes for my own personal study and began to take on some interior design clients on a freelance basis. We moved to Nebraska for 18 months in 2014 and I pivoted again by honing in on woodworking and creating functional goods for the kitchen and home. I’ve always been inspired by wood and the grain and pattern that can be revealed when working with it and I was drawn to creating pieces that could be functional as well as a work of art when not in use. Now that I’ve been in Philadelphia just over two years I like to think of vestige HOME as a creative business that seeks to bring beauty to the home through functional goods and interior design. I feel grateful I have been able to combine several of my passions into a creative business.
Do you consider yourself a maker or an artist? I feel like you are a little of both. How do you perceive the intersection of these two worlds? Do you feel like they are one in the same?
I consider myself to be both. A “creative” might be a more well-rounded description. I love working with my hands and am equally as happy helping someone to redesign their kitchen space, carve a spoon, or to compose a beautiful photograph for my website. When I think about what I tend to lean towards, it’s exercising creativity to create beauty in multiple formats. For me personally I feel like making and artistry are linked, for oftentimes in order to achieve the artistic vision, some element of getting hands on to make it happen is involved. I enjoy the process of letting things evolve and trying different avenues and compositions which necessitates a hands on approach for me.
What gets you excited about your product being in the world and growing as a business owner?
I love the idea that people are using our goods in the world, I love that someone may have gifted it for a wedding, housewarming, or other special occasion. Our customers care about supporting a handmade business and surrounding themselves with beautiful things that enhance their quality of life, I hope that people are just as happy when they have a beautiful serving board out at their party or when they are cutting their apple for a snack on a Thursday afternoon. Having beautiful pieces elevates not only the special occasions, but the everyday.
Do you partner with other businesses or artists? how does that influence your work?
Yes! We’ve done several collaborations with other artists and carrying a small selection of other artist’s work in our online shop. Bringing a greater sense of community and appreciation of other methods of craft is wonderful. It’s energizing to come up with new concepts or to consider how complimentary functions can drive a new design.
What do you absolutely need in order to begin your process?
Wood, a few power tools, some good tunes, and my own two hands!
What is the most important thing that has brought you to the success you are having? Anything unexpected come up for you over the course of running the business?
There are so many things that have helped me to get where I am so far. I always strive to do my best. Listening, analyzing results, and developing ways to improve while staying flexible and knowing when to pivot has helped to move my business forward. Developing community and supporting the work of others is also important (and also the most rewarding part of business in my opinion!). And finally, don’t give up, having my own business has been the hardest thing I have ever done, but it’s also a pretty wonderful feeling and I feel grateful to have the opportunity to be on this journey.
Here's a little taste of some of my favorites from her interior design.
Photography: Feather Weight
Artistans: Bestowe Artisans
Buy the box that features Vestige Home, Host Your Heart Out, now.
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