Two words I enjoy…. SPACE and MOVE
I consider them both true luxuries. Some of the definitions of these while not limited to, include:
- To change the place or position of.
- Go in a specified direction or manner.
- Change or cause to change from one state, opinion, sphere, or activity to another.
- Influence or prompt action to occur.
- And my favorite, the most simplistic…TAKE ACTION.
And then there’s SPACE
- A continuous area or expanse that is free.
- The freedom and scope to live, think and develop in a way that suits one.
- An interval of time (often used to suggest that the time is short, considering what has happened or been achieved in it).
The past year and a half Betsee and I have been quietly working away at creating more space. We took the space of where our offices used to be and opened that all up, taking down walls and offices to create more space to house our collections. We put a beautiful staircase in connecting our mezzanine space to the first floor so that offices could be moved upstairs. First my team went upstairs, and then we decided it would be better for her team to move upstairs and our team to move to where her team used to be…. Lots of presence in action in movement and space. Not all roads are straight ones, which we know, the left turns and right turns, while amazing are the turns that inevitably lead you to some place even more spectacular. What a blessed and incredible situation to find ourselves in, both needing more space. For myself, the physical need of space was almost secondary to the continued creative expanse to develop and evolve. Years and years of mutual respect and friendship, she said, I’ll move, you stay, I said I’ll move and you stay. I love change, I have no fear about evolving and in fact it’s my oxygen. So, now to actually find a space that could physically provide us with accommodating our needs and would have great design bones as I know myself so well and know that I would need to work on it, personalizing it.
I remember years ago, when we first confronted space and movement…. It started with a conversation about making a commitment to Los Angeles, and Downtown, which at that time, was nothing like downtown, as we know it today. I was inspired to take a stand for fashion, showing that you didn’t need to necessarily have a NY association to be respected or aligned with fashion. Back then, the association of the LA fashion segment was designers that created costumes or crazy outfits for celebrities to perform or walk the red carpet in. I disagreed immensely. I had been privileged to travel the world for work many times and what I saw and knew was talent is talent and it’s everywhere. It’s not about where you were from, what design school you graduated from, or what city you produced in. We decided and agreed that yes, we would take a stand and make a commitment to LA, the New Mart, Downtown LA, and open our first expanded agency in LA and then Paris, then NY. I remember initially telling B, lets create a floor of our brands, like little boutiques… “I love it” she exclaimed, but at that time, Ethan couldn’t find us an entire floor that we could have. Then one day, he said…you know the bank has been wanting to get out of its lease for quite some time. I told her, let’s go see it. I will never forget the day we walked into the Manufacturer’s Bank. It was a bank all right, with tellers, and wooden walls and oh that amazing vault, all stainless from the ’50’s. Just beautiful. I looked around and saw something else, “let’s do it” I said. And, she, my dear partner said yes. How amazing it has been to have a partner that if I said let’s jump she’d say I’m in. We literally had to design that space from nothing. It was one of the most fun, challenging and inspired times. How I got to keep the vault, is an entire other blog post. I absolutely know we will miss our jewelry vault and more so the meaning of it for me, because it was such a challenge to keep it and get the FTC to allow it.
I’ve known Steve forever, the beloved owner of the Cooper Building. He’s the brother to one of my dearest and best friends for many years. So to find our new space at the Cooper Design Space is like the cherry on the top of the sundae. When I first walked into the massive space, I don’t even know how large…maybe some 30,000 square feet or so…. I was blown away…. The work put into the space from the previous owner, with beautiful built ins, sound proofed walls, offices and conference rooms of glass and LIGHT, all that natural light that I had gotten so spoiled to having in our previous space. It was perfect, except it was a bit too much space…grateful that after months of back and forth, Steve said, we decided we could divide it. It was done…It all happened very quickly after that, deciding a move in date, letting my team know, all of us working to keep it a secret from our NY team – our directors Crystal and Chloe knew of course and had to help keep it a surprise until our al team summit. It was so worth it, as the whole team walked in, outward and inwardly everyone cheered! Our teams are truly so special, the group of men and women who make them up are so bright, motivated, kind, caring, talented and kick ass. They inspire me daily to keep grinding and growing. They are the ones I keep pushing for, our teams are not just our immediate teams, but our teams including our designers, manufacturers, they are true partners and it’s amazing we go thru all what we do in this complex and invigorating time, holding hands.
It was a bit nutty moving and having our all-team summit the next day, but there’s something awesome about having these collisions in life that all line up… I enjoy it tremendously. I am so happy to be working with Cliff Fong, long time friend and amazing designer. …We’ve known one another forever – as I suggested Cliff and hired him as the men’s creative and buyer at Maxfield when I was there. In addition to owning his own gallery space, he’s helped create countless number of incredible interiors for both commercial and private environments.
It’s been a bittersweet transition. So excited for our new space, yet a huge reflection of the many extraordinary relationships and friendships made over the years in our old space. What summed up quite a bit for me, was when Ethan, the building manager of many years, offered to have the crew there move us. The guys, as we all belovedly refer to them, have kept us painted, polished, lit, and repaired in a seamless manner over the years. They have become our friends, we know about their families, their heartaches, their dreams, their struggles and triumphs. It was tough hearing these strong, strapping men, tear up and share how much our friendships have meant to them over the years.
A time of great reflection and immense gratitude for all the learning, growing, struggling, crushing, evolving, standing still, going backwards and pushing forward. The two constants are love and forward. No accident by any means that the incredible Kahu and Kumu Hula Blaine Kia was in town the week we moved. He graciously agreed to a traditional Hawaiian blessing for our new space…. IMUA – a powerful Hawaiian word that has resonated in me since I was a wee Keiki playing sports…. Forward, always forward. So we look forward to our new physical space, the space for our expanded initiatives, new projects, new inspirations, new avenues to continuously add value and have fun. And Love, the big one, the only one, Love and passion for what we all do, Love for one another…in every corner, every crevice of my journey LOVE is blessedly constant.
#Happy, #teamHATCh #IMUA #grateful #inspired #stoked #creating #expanding #breath #space #HATChingGrowth #stayhungry #BEBOLD