Ha, ok, that’s the first line of Dickens’ David Copperfield but it’s applicable here. The Storied House is the beginning of something new for me. The creation of this business represents a long journey and a massive shift; an abandonment of a long career that had gotten quite comfortable to a completely new and beautiful arena of textiles. The seed had been there longer than I realized, but the longing for something creative was drowned out by the busyness of life, young children and all that goes with those life events.
And while I didn’t put all this together until after The Storied House was already a bubbling enterprise, this company is precisely the business for me to create. Of course it is. Textile design and storytelling marries the things I learned from my parents. My father was a newspaper publisher in a family business, so the printed word was and remains sacred in my family, as is entrepreneurship and the diligence required to run your own business. I understand the printing process on any medium after growing up around the large printing presses at the newspaper. Playing on the presses every Saturday when I would go to the paper with my dad, I quite literally grew up on a printing press and the smell of ink evokes fond childhood memories.
If my mother had had any interest in monetizing her talents she would have been Martha Stewart x400. She paints, she loves beautiful things and her entertaining would make Jackie Kennedy jealous. We always had gorgeous things in our home and she taught us that beauty didn’t have to be expensive, just born out of creativity.
So why the name The Storied House? After lots of travel and movement, my husband and I had accumulated lots of stories; life in New York as singletons before we met, work stints in San Francisco, honeymoon in South Africa and as much travel as humanly possible while we were based in Dublin, Ireland (the mecca of storytelling, by the way). Ready to start a family, we moved back to the US and bought an historical home in the city of St. Louis (on May Day, from a cyber cafe in Poland, but that's another post) that came with lots of wonderful stories that the owners over the years had taken pains to preserve.
Our home is a daily reminder of the power of storytelling, which has also played an important part in my family; my Irish husband has a patent on storytelling and on my side-as a family of journalists and communicators we have collectively reported facts, editorialized, opined and written creatively professionally. At home we tell tales about loved ones who have passed on, the funny things that cousins did (that’s a later blog post), that our children did (I will spare you) and what we did as kids (there are some long suffering babysitters in these stories). These stories have cemented our bond to each other.
My goals for The Storied House are two-fold: create beautiful textiles that tell a story and reflect yours, while making an impact for the greater good. I envision being able to tell the stories of some amazing women in the developing world making a positive impact on their communities whose fair trade products you can enjoy with my designs. Stay tuned.
And with that, my friends…
Chapter One, I am born.