Name: Caroline and Jose Vásquez
Location: Austin, Texas
Company: Paloma’s Nest
What do you do? Paloma’s Nest creates a line of handcrafted modern heirlooms. We focus on designs for weddings, baby, home, & holiday. Often our custom pieces commemorate a special time or event. We strive to produce items of the highest quality craftsmanship and materials that will be cherished and passed on to future generations.
What is your aesthetic? Our aesthetic is timeless. Most of our designs are simple, modern, and unexpectedly elegant. However, we do not design based on trends or styles. When we design, we look at a piece and say “Will this still be beautiful in 100 years?”
How does your studio style convey your professional aesthetic? In our product line, we stay true to the natural characteristics of the materials we use- wood, clay and porcelain, organic cotton, pure gold and silver leaf. We recently moved into this new studio space, which houses our offices, shipping area, ceramic studio, wood shop and boutique. Most everything in the space needed to be gutted before we moved in, so we were able to create an environment that reflects the brand that lives here. We used lots of reclaimed building supplies, and got an amazing deal on overstock of pale maplewood flooring. Simple white walls, desks and tables are matched with silver galvanized metal chairs and wooden storage pieces. Lots of natural sunlight makes the space a joy to work in.
Favorite part of your studio? The expansive 12 foot long chalkboard. It serves as a “home-base” for important notes, dates, numbers, and funny jokes.
Where do you go for inspiration? Most of our inspiration comes directly from the materials we use, and how far we can push those materials, combined with a real love of history and antiques. We love to re-consider items from the past, and update them to create a “new classic.”
What tool do you use in your business that you can’t live without? Our amazing team! We could not do what we do as entrepreneurs and parents if it wasn’t for the talented and loyal folks who work with us everyday.
Is there anything you’d upgrade to? As much as we love our little kilns (they are incredible workhorses!), we would LOVE a new giant kiln, because of the possibilities it could bring for new designs in the collection.
Anything else we should know? As you see in the photos here, we have this sweet little showroom/boutique now open in Austin! If you are in the area, come say “hi!”
We will be open for extended holiday hours starting in November, around the same time our beloved Holiday Collection debuts.
Shop hours and location can be found here: http://palomasnest.com/locations.html
If you’re not around Austin, of course our entire collection is available online at palomasnest.com
[images from Paloma's Nest]
Name: Meredith Kurosko
Location: New York City! Our location is quite unique, and we think it adds a fun little note to the world of Regas! We’re located on the sunny second ﬂoor of a Greek Orthodox Church in west Midtown. Our vintage letterpress machines and paper samples spent months begging for open space as our business grew – and we were lucky enough to ﬁnd it in this quirky space.
Company: Regas New York
What do you do? We create stationery and invitations! At any given time you can ﬁnd a Regas designer hard at work on our wedding collection, or on a custom piece for a special event. Our letterpress is in-house – so all printing happens inside our studio.
What is your aesthetic? Bold, bright, and colorful.
How does your studio style convey your professional aesthetic? We like to think of our studio as an equation: calm background plus amazing accents equaling a sense of the Regas brand! We chose a calm grey for our walls, but then painted our ﬁreplace a shock of yellow. Other colorful bits and pieces are scattered throughout. The space feels timeless in its use of a neutral underlying shade but distinct in its ability to spark creativity and energy.
Favorite part of your studio? Hands down? The comradery and creative spirit shared by our team. There isn’t a day that goes by without a challenging design dilemma – and yet our natural approach is always laughter rather than dismay. And we’re very much a working studio – someone always has dirty hands from the printing!
I also feel incredibly fortunate to have the luxury of space to spread out when tackling a project. We all know that’s a rare thing in NYC, but our large footprint allows us to really play with any medium that strikes the team’s fancy. We’ve spray painted linens, screen printed table runners, redone furniture, and spackled walls, all from within our studio. The space really allows us to go in any direction.
Where do you go for inspiration? I don’t have one go-to place, but do ﬁnd myself excited by a few things over and over again. Clients are inspiring to me. They have wonderful stories and are planning thoughtful events. Their energy is contagious!
I also ﬁnd the wedding community a real source of inspiration. It’s so incredibly full of talented entrepreneurs. The friends I’ve made since starting Regas keep my mind going.
Finally, on a more tangible front – the walk home from the train to my apartment in Brooklyn affords endless eye-candy. I’m always caught anew by the architecture of the neighborhood and ﬁnding hidden patterns that I want to capture on paper.
What tool do you use in your business that you can’t live without? Four words, two items: pantone book and printing ruler. Need those colors and perfect measurements!
Is there anything you’d upgrade to? In case a little elf is reading this… a new paper cutter, central a/c in our studio, and a heidlberg letterpress
Anything else we should know? Our team is knit together like no other. Regas designers Allison and Caitlin and I work together ﬁve (sometimes seven!) days a week – and yet we often linger well past hours to just get in more quality time. Allison is my younger sister, and she lives with me, so we’re basically attached at the hip!
[images from Jamie Hankin and Regas NY]
Location: 231 Bedford Avenue, Williamsburg Brooklyn
What do you do? kitchen/housewares retail store
What is your aesthetic? cozy, comfortable, vintage-inspired
How does your studio style convey your professional aesthetic? I think the aesthetic of the store sums up what we are perfectly – your friendly, comfortable, neighborhood store.
Favorite part of your studio? Our favorite part has to be the teakettles on shelves in the window!
Where do you go for inspiration? Everywhere! We’re inspired from our home kitchens, our favorite kitchens, restaurants and bars. Lately, we’re really into Pinterest!
What tool do you use in your business that you can’t live without? Our macs!
Is there anything you’d upgrade to? A larger space!
Anything else we should know? Look for a Manhattan store coming this fall – we’ve got a lot of things to be excited about happening!
[images from Whisk]
Name: Annemarie Buckley
Location: Burlington, Vermont
Company: Scout’s Honor Co.
What do you do? Stationery, hand type, illustration, custom design
What is your aesthetic? Fresh take on classic Americana. I love vintage as much as I love modern…trying everyday to make the two get along.
How does your studio style convey your professional aesthetic? I love surrounding myself with things that inspire me and objects that I use on a daily basis. I find that tucking things away means I never see them again. Everything is visible and fodder for new ideas: vintage American flags, pens & pencils, rulers, scarves, jewelry, paper samples, sailing flags, books, vintage pennants (starting a lil collection of those), paints & brushes, stencils, stamps, magazines (every issue of Domino, RIP), pottery, wood crates, postcards, art. Etc. Etc. Etc! Actually looking for a place to put Etc. right now…
I like the background for all of this visual overload to be simple. Most walls are white with the exception of the studio “turret” which I painted charcoal gray. I love white trim & pops of color against a dark, dramatic background. Studio furniture is simple & utilitarian: saw horses for table legs, unfinished or chalkboard-painted wood for table tops, plywood cubes as storage.
Favorite part of your studio? Hands down the five windows in the turret…not only do they keep me connected to the outdoors all day but they provide the best (and cheapest) photo shoot lighting a girl can ask for. My studio is on the 3rd floor of an old house, so the height gives me a slight view of the lake and makes me feel like I’m in a treehouse!
Where do you go for inspiration? Vermont in general is super inspiring: the mountains, the lakes, the small towns, the artists, the antique stores…the list goes on. Traveling out of Vermont and getting fresh perspective is important (and fun) as well. On top of that, I am constantly inspired by magazines, newspapers, interiors, fashion, hardware stores, school supplies, signage, warehouses, army/navy shops, restaurants…pretty much anywhere that has something classic/industrial/functional to offer. I have even spent an afternoon in a plumbing supply shop…I know.
What tool do you use in your business that you can’t live without? Pens, paper, scanner. I wouldn’t know where to begin without ‘em. Equally as crucial: iced tea and dark chocolate.
Is there anything you’d upgrade to? I am grateful for what I have but in America, bigger is better, right? I am speaking only in terms of monitors. 27 inch iMac, you will be mine one day (shakin’ that piggy bank as I type this).
Anything else we should know? I wrote my senior thesis in college on paper. Let’s just say this obsession has been around for awhile…
[images from Scout's Honor Co.]
Name: Sullivan Owen
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Company: Sullivan Owen floral & event design
What do you do? I am a floral & event designer, my studio designs everything from bridal bouquets to hand dyed & embroidered table linens to custom props and sources vintage furniture in addition to daily floral deliveries.
What is your aesthetic? We don’t subscribe to one style of design, preferring to get to know the event hosts and tailor a design specifically for them incorporating elements that they love. We love to mix modern, vintage and antique elements to create designs that communicate the personality of the couple or the lucky recipient of a floral delivery.
How does your studio style convey your professional aesthetic? The studio décor is a mixture of modern, vintage and antique industrial pieces mixed with a few family heirlooms to remind me of the talented family I come from. The studio is packed with carefully chosen pieces that speak to the attention to detail we maintain when designing an event. The color palette is understated allowing the flowers to pop since they are the heart of the business. The front of the studio is a welcoming consultation area in front of a giant General Store cabinet from the 50’s that holds a fraction of the huge collection of vases we own. The workroom is designed for maximum efficiency and is super organized so that we can crank out the dozens of designs required for large events in addition to our daily orders. My office is designed to be a bit more serene with lighter shades and plenty of storage to keep me organized.
Favorite part of your studio? I couldn’t possibly pick a favorite, the whole studio is so personal to me. If I didn’t really love something, it wouldn’t be here in the studio. Even the building we are in is special to me as I lived on the 3rd floor when I met my now husband. I walk in the door every day so happy that I get to work in a beautiful and functional space doing a job that I truly love. Nearly every person to step foot in the studio says that it’s such a lovely place to work. Not to get all new-agey but it just has a great vibe.
Where do you go for inspiration? I am primarily inspired by fashion. I love finding ways to incorporate the upcoming trends into an event design in a tasteful and thoughtful way. We keep several inspiration pin boards filled with fashion or home décor images paired with flowers and change them frequently. We are always looking ahead similarly to the fashion industry for new color combinations, new floral varieties and especially new containers.
What tool do you use in your business that you can’t live without? Florist’s knife and our giant walk in cooler which we just got but it is already indispensable
Is there anything you’d upgrade to? I would love a teleportation machine, Star Trek style that beams me to both the NYC and SF flower markets each day but barring some serious technological advances or hiring a guy named Scottie, I’d have to say central AC in the studio. With summer just around the corner, it looks like staff meetings will be happening in the cooler.
Anything else we should know? As for the studio, we’re not content with just providing exceptional floral & event design. We don’t love the rental options currently available in the market so we’ll be launching our first collection of limited edition linens for Spring 2012 which is incredibly exciting. They’ll be available for rent for events across the US and the collection is focused on providing a more understated and elegant option for table linens in a sea of bedazzled, sparkly and shiny.
As for me, I’m married to another entrepreneur Tim Owen co-owner of Jade Tree, a seminal independent record label he started with a friend at age 19. Tim was the one who encouraged me to start my own studio after working for other designers and he continues to be my biggest supporter as well as my sounding board for new ideas. We live with our 4 rescue cats just south of Philly in Wilmington, DE.
Have a great studio you want to share? Send it over! We’d love to see it! Email brooklynbride [at] gmail.com!