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Business of Home Podcast
61 minutes | Sep 19, 2022
Billy Cotton tried to quit interior design. The universe had other ideas
From creating a line of tableware to design projects that landed him on the AD100, Billy Cotton’s career has seen him apply his talents to a wide range of pursuits. Recently, after a short stint as Ralph Lauren Home’s creative director, he’s returned to the role that keeps calling him back —interior designer. On this episode of the show, he speaks with host Dennis Scully about why he likes to hire former waiters for his firm, how perception doesn’t always match reality in the design industry, and why he’s always counted on hard work to get him through difficult times. This episode is sponsored by Crypton LINKSBilly CottonDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
60 minutes | Sep 5, 2022
Can you balance idealism and business? Connie Matisse is working on it
Founded in 2010 by Connie Matisse, her husband Alex, and their friend John Vigeland, East Fork began as a small pottery studio. The company has since evolved into a thriving direct-to-consumer brand, with a bustling manufacturing operation in North Carolina. On this episode of podcast, host Dennis Scully speaks with Matisse about her complicated relationship with social media, the leadership lessons she’s learned at the helm of a fast-growing company, and why it’s so hard to find a balance between idealism and business. This episode is sponsored by Crypton To register for the Future of Home conference, click here. LINKSEast ForkDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
62 minutes | Aug 29, 2022
How two friends named John reshaped the design business
John Edelman and John McPhee met by chance while working for Edelman’s brother, Sam in the footwear business—their partnership would ultimately reshape the design industry as we know it. Together, they exponentially grew the Edelman family leather business, which they ultimately sold to Knoll for $67 million. They then went on to pull off a dramatic rescue job on then-struggling retailer Design Within Reach, selling that business to Herman Miller for $154 million. Now, the pair have their own ventures: McPhee is the new CEO of chilewich, and Edelman has acquired cult favorite design brand Heller. But they continue to work together and share insights on a fast-changing market. On this episode of the show, they talk about how difficult times lead to the most growth, and why betting on great design always makes for good business. This episode is sponsored by Crypton. Click here to register for the Future of Home conference. LINKSHellerChilewichDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
56 minutes | Aug 22, 2022
How did Harry Styles end up on the cover of Better Homes & Gardens?
With stints at Domino, House and Garden, and Martha Stewart Living, Stephen Orr is a publishing veteran who has seen most sides of the shelter media industry. In his current role as editor in chief of Better Homes & Gardens, he’s working on a new challenge: to steer a 100-year-old publication that reaches not just the affluent and design-obsessed, but all Americans, across the country, from all walks of life. In this episode of the podcast, he speaks with host Dennis Scully about what “fancy creep” is and why wants to avoid it, why he put Harry Styles on his cover, and why, for a contemporary magazine, the print issue is only part of the equation. This episode is sponsored by Modern Matter & High Point Market Register for the Future of Home here. LINKSBetter Homes & GardensDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
56 minutes | Aug 15, 2022
Zak+Fox founder Zak Profera on the power of details
A decade ago, Zak Profera started his company—Zak & Fox—a decade ago as a small line of printed linens. Through great design, determination and a relentless obsession with details, he’s grown it into a thriving independent brand, beloved by designers and represented by the industry’s best showrooms. On this episode of the podcast, he speaks with host Dennis Scully about the pros and cons of design centers, why he stopped selling to consumers, and why, despite the rapid pace of technological disruption, he thinks the design industry won’t change as much as some might think. This episode is sponsored by Modern Matter & High Point Market Register for the Future of Home here. LINKSZak+FoxDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
58 minutes | Aug 8, 2022
Can rugs be innovative? Brian Erden thinks so
After years in the textile industry, Brian Erden had a series of innovations: One was to weave metals like bronze and brass deeply into the background of rugs. The other was to establish his own operations overseas, rather than relying on a dubious network of middlemen. In six short years, Erden product has become a hit in the industry, represented by top showrooms and used by star designers. On this episode of the podcast, he speaks with host Dennis Scully about why some rugs cost $1,000 and others $10,000, why he’s a believer in multiline showrooms, and why the textile industry isn’t as innovative as it needs to be. This episode is sponsored by Modern Matter and High Point Market. To register for the Future of Home conference, click here. Erden RugsDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
64 minutes | Aug 1, 2022
Shanan Campanaro of Eskayel on creating a cult favorite textile brand
After a breakup left Shanan Campanaro in a near-empty apartment, she decided to tap into her fine art background and create some bespoke wallcoverings. The project led her to found the New York textile design studio Eskayel. On this episode of the podcast, Campanaro speaks with host Dennis Scully about how her unorthodox beginnings, coupled with her outsider perspective and experiences watching her parents run their own business led her to create a brand that was uniquely her own. This episode is sponsored by Modern Matter and High Point Market.
52 minutes | Jul 25, 2022
Jonathan Miller on real estate as a spectator sport
Jonathan Miller, the president and CEO of real estate appraisal and consulting firm Miller Samuel, discusses what rapidly rising interest rates will mean for the housing market. This episode is sponsored by Serena & Lily and the Future of Home conference.
54 minutes | Jul 18, 2022
Thibaut is proudly old school
Originally founded as a wallpaper maker in the 19th century, Thibaut has grown over the decades to become a powerhouse brand that now produces wallcoverings, fabric and even furniture. Despite a surge of growth in our digital era, Thibaut remains proudly old-school. While other brands explore virtual visualization tools and selling online, it produces sample books and relies on a network of showrooms and shops to distribute its products. On this episode of the podcast, chief marketing officer Stacy Senior Allan speaks with host Dennis Scully about how trade brands have to police internet sellers, why she believes in the power of print magazines, and what interior designers really need in a time of so much change. This episode is sponsored by Serena & Lily and the Future of Home conference LINKSThibautDennis Scully Business of Home
47 minutes | Jul 11, 2022
Martin Brudnizki: "If you can design a restaurant, you can design anything"
A truly cosmopolitan interior designer, Martin Brudnizki was raised in Sweden, started his business in London, and now operates an office in New York. If you’re familiar with the finest restaurants and hotels in the world, you know his work—he’s designed everything from the Beekman in New York to Annabel’s in London to Soho House in Miami. On this episode of the podcast, he speaks with host Dennis Scully about why he likes running a large firm, why he’s pushing to get employees back to the office, and why he always takes on 30 percent more work than he can handle. This episode is sponsored by Serena & Lily and the Future of Home conference LINKSMartin BrudnizkiDennis Scully Business of Home
60 minutes | Jul 4, 2022
Brigette Romanek on a rocket-fueled design career
The daughter of singer Paulette McWilliams, interior designer Brigette Romanek was always destined for a creative path, but it was a winding one. She tried her hand at music and fashion before finally landing on interior design—ever since, she’s been on a tear, landing celebrity clients, a spot on the AD100 and a major collection with Mitchell Gold & Bob Williams. On this episode of the podcast, she speaks with host Dennis Scully about the complications of working for celebrity clients, why she invested in buzzy startup The Expert, and why, economic stormclouds or no, she’s choosing to be optimistic about the future. This episode is sponsored by Serena & Lily and the Future of Home conference LINKSBrigette RomanekDennis Scully Business of Home
42 minutes | Jun 27, 2022
Lindsey Adelman: "If it's fun, do it."
Lighting designer Lindsey Adelman went out on her own in 2006 and scored a hit right away. Her debut piece, the now-iconic branching bubble chandelier, was a huge success—only the first of many. Sixteen years later, she’s built a thriving bicoastal business, with top designers and celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow among her enthusiastic patrons. On this episode of the podcast, she speaks with host Denis Scully about whether she thinks the industry is due for a slowdown, how imagining Donatella Versace was her client led to a breakthrough, and why designers need to embrace instinct, play and humor in their work. This episode is sponsored by Vaughan and Serena & Lily LINKSLindsey AdelmanDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
54 minutes | Jun 20, 2022
Material Bank is just getting started, says Adam Sandow
Launched in 2018, Material Bank offered designers a unique promise: Order samples from an online platform and they’d show up on your desk the next morning, all for free. In four short years founder Adam Sandow has rapidly grown the company to feature 500 brands serving nearly 100,000 users—and raised more than 325 million dollars in the process. On this episode of the show, Sandow speaks with host Dennis Scully about moving into the residential side of the industry, the challenge of making the platform affordable to smaller makers, and why he thinks design brands need to make themselves easier to work with if they’re going to survive. This episode is sponsored by Vaughan and Serena & Lily LINKSMaterial BankDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
50 minutes | Jun 13, 2022
Leanne Ford: "Don't major in the minors"
An interior designer, product designer, author and HGTV star, Leanne Ford has carved out her own unique path in the design industry. From the beginning, she’s taken an approach driven more by gut instinct than a grand vision—she’s always chosen to do what feels exciting and inspiring, come what may. On this episode of the podcast, Ford speaks with host Dennis Scully about the power of saying no, why she’ll stick with her signature white-on-white aesthetic even after it’s fallen out of style, and what it will take to get more people to embrace the experience of working with an interior designer. This episode is sponsored by Vaughan and Serena & Lily LINKSLeanne FordDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
43 minutes | Jun 6, 2022
Sebastian Brauer wants Crate & Barrel to explore the Metaverse
Sebastian Brauer, the senior vice president of product design at Crate & Barrel, was recently given a new task: helping Crate & Barrel explore the metaverse. On this episode of the podcast he talks with host Dennis Scully about his interest in all things crypto, NFTs and Web3, and what they might mean for the home industry. He also discusses creating product with designers in mind, the future of work, and why, metaverse or no, real-life retail is here to stay. This episode is sponsored by Vaughan and Serena & Lily LINKSCrate & Barrel Dennis ScullyBusiness of Home
56 minutes | May 23, 2022
How Four Hands went from the fringes of the industry to the mainstream
Founded in the late nineties, Four Hands was originally a modestly sized furniture importer. After starting to design its own pieces, the company grew and grew—now it’s a powerhouse of the industry, supplying furniture to designers and blue chip retailers, and bringing in over half a billion dollars in annual revenue. On this episode of the podcast, CEO Matthew Briggs speaks with host Dennis Scully about getting ahead of supply chain problems, what effect inflation will have on the design industry, and why business models based around exclusivity and protection are becoming obsolete. This episode is sponsored by Room & Board and Modern Matter. LINKSFour HandsDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
63 minutes | May 16, 2022
Emily Henderson is done chasing likes and follows
Designer, stylist, blogger, influencer and author, Emily Henderson is the wearer of many hats. Her big break came after winning the fifth season of HGTV’s competition show, Design Star. Since then, she’s built a sizable following both on social media and through her own website. In this episode of the podcast, Henderson shares an inside look at what it’s like to be a successful design influencer, from negotiating contracts with sponsors to battling Instagram algorithms. She also talks about the inspiration behind her new book, the pros and cons of hustle culture, and why she’s now focused on delivering value, not chasing followers. This episode is sponsored by Room & Board and Modern Matter. LINKSEmily HendersonDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
56 minutes | May 9, 2022
Jean Lin on walking the fine line between idealism and business
Driven by idealism and a desire to support independent makers, Jean Lin started the New York design gallery Colony in 2014 with a uniquely cooperative model. Over the years, she’s helped her clients grow their studios into thriving businesses—and refined her own approach along the way. On this episode of the show, she speaks with host Dennis Scully about finding a way to balance ideals and economics, coaching makers to charge their worth, and what she thinks needs to change about American design fairs. This episode is sponsored by Room & Board and Modern Matter. LINKSColonyDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
67 minutes | May 2, 2022
How Alexa Hampton learned the language of design
Alexa Hampton is, by any definition, a lifer in the trade. The daughter of celebrated designer Mark Hampton, she grew up in the business, and took over her father’s firm at the age of 27 after his untimely passing in 1998. Since then, Alexa has never slowed down, earning endless plaudits for her work, appearing regularly on industry best-of lists, authoring books and columns, and designing product for everyone from Kravet to Theodore Alexander to The Shade Store. On this episode of the podcast, she speaks with host Dennis Scully about how interior design is like a language, why her ideal firm size is 11 employees, and why it’s important to embrace—not turn away from—transparency and change. This episode is sponsored by Room & Board and Modern Matter. LINKSAlexa HamptonDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
52 minutes | Apr 25, 2022
What do venture capitalists think of the design industry?
Forerunner Ventures is one of the premier venture capital firms in Silicon Valley, having led major investments in companies like Glossier, Bonobos, Serena & Lily, Outdoor Voices and Warby Parker. Partner Nicole Johnson has been there since the very beginning, and now she’s leading a round for buzzy online design platform The Expert. On this episode of the podcast she chats with host Dennis Scully about ow venture capital works, what Forerunner is looking for in new companies, and why The Expert was the first interior design startup she said yes to. This episode is sponsored by Thibaut and Hartmann & Forbes LINKSForerunner VenturesDennis ScullyBusiness of Home
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