Suite One Studio
Founder: Lindsay Emery
Current Location: Greensboro, North Carolina
“Modern Tableware Made By Hand From Start To Finish.”
How did you get started in this field/ industry?
I was studying painting in college and was required to take a ceramics class for my degree; at first, I was not excited. But then, I fell in love. I still paint on occasion, but prefer now to be covered in clay.
Where do you find the inspiration for your work?
Everywhere. It’s a bit vague, but true. I think it’s important to experience life with eyes wide open. I am always tuned into the color, texture and form around me; whether in decor, food, textiles, plants or clothing.
Tell us about your design process.
I work with my clay organically, spontaneously and with minimal planning. One of the things that first attracted me to clay was its responsiveness. Each touch on the clay, however slight, shifts the entire outcome to something new. I am primarily making tableware and serving pieces these days, so I do consider the needs and functions of this sort of work while designing, but I aim to remain uninhibited.
How has your design process changed since your started?
My design process has changed tremendously since I started. I think the reason I work so loosely now is because I used to work with very tight, self imposed restrictions and detailed planning. With clay there is so much failure. Easing up on requirements didn’t result in sloppy pots as I feared, but more organically beautiful and purely unique forms that were a delight to make rather than a headache.
What is your favorite material to work with?
Porcelain. The soft, buttery texture makes this clay a real joy to throw with. The same qualities I love about this clay also add to the difficult of working with it, but it’s worth it.
How does your personal style influence your brand/ company/ products, etc?
My style is simple, natural and elegant. I love feminine details without too much fuss and enjoy the raw beauty of natural materials. Rustic woods, metallics, florals and bright pops of colors are common components in my home decor and wardrobe choices. My color choices are all about having fun while still keeping the final product understatedly beautiful.
Where do you imagine you’ll take the company next?
I am working to expand my retail presence. I have a few very exciting projects underway that will be putting my brand into some of my favorite stores! In the future I’d also like to move my studio into a large commercial space. Currently I work from my home studio which offers convenience and flexibility, but I’d trade those qualities for a space that allows me to have retail and showroom space right in my studio.
Who would be a dream collaborator?
Emily Henderson, definitely. Her design and styling sensibilities blow me away. I’d love to work with her on designing a tableware line… or anything at all for that matter.
What colors/ patterns are you drawn to right now?
Aqua is always on my radar, but lately I am really feeling a pull towards deep, rich cobalts that may just eclipse my aqua obsession soon. I am also loving metallics and soft, satin whites. Bringing metallics into my work involves entering into an entirely new working process, but I’m ready for some sparkle. Pattern love of the moment? Think classic tapestries updated with bolder graphics and more concentrated colors.
What’s one tip you would give to people getting into this business?
Dig in and get your hands dirty. Having an idea is only part of it. You have to start making and building those ideas into a reality. Don’t wait for everything to come together perfectly before getting started. That won’t happen. My business is a manifestation of my hopes, dreams and fears as well as my best ideas and my worst. It’s not all success. I think it’s important to be realistic about the ups and downs that come with venturing into any new field or business. Authentically creating is essential to finding your own design voice and honing in on the brand that is truly you.
Who do you see as an innovator/s0meone you look up to in this field?
Jonathan Adler. His transition from potter to full on designer is so inspiring. This is the path in which I would love to find myself years from now!
Food still life photo: Helene Dujardin