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59 minutes | May 27, 2021
Nike Onile on creative wintering
Today’s conversation is with Nike Onile, an interior and spatial designer based in Toronto. Back in 2017, we connected through Instagram. During that time, Nike was running her design agency 800 square feet, and The apartment, which allowed customers to shop every single thing in that apartment. From the bed linens to the clothes hanging in the closet. It was a big hit. Nike not only gained tons of press, but also lots of industry recognition. But the thing is the business was running faster than she could keep up with. And behind all the glamour and rainbow, Nike felt incredibly unfulfilled. In the end, she decided to let it go and went into a long period of what she called it “creative hibernation”. And Nike is now back on the grid. Just rebranded her business to a brand new concept, ODE studio, which allows her to sink her teeth into multi-disciplinary design. She is a regular design expert on CityLine, and has been featured by House and Home, NUVO magazine and most recently, Refinery 29. In this conversation, we talked about the importance of seeing creative endeavours as seasons. There are winters, and there are summers. Creative wintering is more important than we give it credit for. We talked about identity. We talked about how dancing with our own darkness is just as crucial as embracing our light. We chatted about cancelling the outside noise. We laughed a lot. I even shedded a few tears. Not sure it was because Nike was THAT amazing, or because of the hormone in me as a breastfeeding mother. Or the combination of both. But either way, I enjoyed our conversation so so much.You can find Nike via Instagram here.Dear Seekers newsletter subscribers will have early access to each podcast conversation. Fancy to subscribe? You can head to our Substack here. Connect on Instagram at @DearSeekers.Cover Art Photo credit: @kla_ssh. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
18 minutes | May 16, 2021
*Important Updates + Audio version of the first letter
Hi hi, I'm (sort of) back. In this episode, I'm sharing some important updates about Dear Seekers and where we are heading. First and foremost, we're now on Substack! If you're a Dear Seekers subscriber, you should have received two letters from me already. If you missed it, you can still head to our Substack to read the past letters. For those of you who don't want to read the second letter but prefer to listen to it, I've recorded an audio version that you can listen to...in this episode (Starting at 8'30).Some house keeping things if you're new there:Get in touch on Instagram at @DearSeekersSign up to our newsletter here.Read about the NEW Dear Seekers here.For he past home-visit photos, you can still visit our website here. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
45 minutes | May 28, 2020
Esie Mensah on actively challenging our defaults
Despite of being an award-winning dancer and having worked with some big names like Rihanna, Drake, and Backstreet Boys, when it comes to accepting her own achievements, Esie Mensah has come a long way. Throughout her career years, Esie has been constantly exploring internally as an artist. And by doing that, her voice has been getting stronger and stronger. As the creator of the beautiful theatre show Shades, which re-examines the wound caused by prejudice against a person based on the darkness of their skin colour, Esie hopes to provides a healing opportunity for its audiences while challenging them to confront themselves and to shift their defaults. She recently appeared on Ted Talks to continually exploring shadeism, not through dance- the art form she is familiar with, but with speaking words instead. By knowing that she has a message to give, Esie delivered it with a standing ovation. Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram.Sign up to Seeker Supply to join our community of curious, reflective and explorative souls. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
42 minutes | Apr 2, 2020
Harriet Alida Lye on motherhood, cancer and becoming
Someone once said, "a rich life experience is what makes a good writer great." As it may not be true for many, it's certainly the case for Harriet Alida Lye. Just at 15 years old, Harriet was diagnosed with a form of Leukaemia called Natural Killer that the average survival time of patients is fifty-eight days. Another chilling fact: Harriet is the only known survivor. It’s almost like a given blessing to have this illness so that she could be the one to tell this uniquely important story. Years later after living in many cities in the world, Harriet is finally settled in Toronto with her partner, their son and two dogs. She currently lives in a "hipster mansion" as she refers to in her memoir Natural Killer. Before this book, Harriet debuted her misty and unsettling novel The Honey Farm, which was praised by a numerous of major publications. The New York Times called it "a buzzworthy debut". Her work has also been published in The Globe and Mail, The National Post, The Happy Reader and many more.Pre-order her memoir here.Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
50 minutes | Mar 19, 2020
Nicole Campbell on finding her own identity and taking risk
Just like the company she co-created, Nicole Campbell is whimsical, humorous, witty, and fun. Through Grape Witches, she intents to make nature wine approachable and available. They have a monthly nature wine delivery service, they host the most desirable and whimsical art parties, they consult at private events, like birthdays and wedding receptions, and they also host educational sessions spreading knowledge about nature wine. Having worked in the wine and hospitality industry for years, Nicole has learnt a lot about what she loves, and what she doesn't about this industry. She loves nature wine, obviously, its producers around the world and the makers behind each bottle, but she gets quite turned off by how pretentious, exclusive, and male dominated this industry can be. So, she and her partner Krista Oben are here to change that. Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
45 minutes | Mar 5, 2020
Zai Rajkotwala on giving space to sadness
My conversation with Zai Rajkotwala , owner of two of the most beloved shops in Toronto, Easy Tiger and Ease, exchanged in the cutest, tiniest house in the west end. Her home is an extension of her shops- full of quirky, hand-made, colourful objects. The things she has been collecting, the things she adores, and the things that touch the deepest part of her sentimental self. They are everywhere, but all seem to be situated in the right place with the same amount of care and love. Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook and Instagram.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
48 minutes | Nov 7, 2019
Deborah Wang on living in the moment
It's quite difficult to define what Deborah Wang actually does.To introduce her as one, two, or even three professional titles would neglect her ability of spreading her wings further. She completed a Master of Architecture in University of Waterloo and Master of Fine Arts at OCAD; worked as a senior designer at Toronto's Architecture and Design firm Superkül; and beyond that, she has built DesignTO - an annual art and design festival, alongside a group of dedicated friends.Before interviewing Deborah, I was quite amazed and curious about how she makes all of these projects possible. After our conversation, it has become pretty clear. Her perspective on life and death has liberated her to be someone who takes on projects that interest her at the moment. She doesn't plan very ahead. Instead, she chooses to immerse herself into meaningful projects, one at a time.Deborah has lived a fulfilled and meaningful life, one that continues to evolve.Listen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
52 minutes | Oct 3, 2019
Virginia Johnson on seeing life in chapters
Virginia Johnson is a Toronto-based textile designer, painter, illustrator, and is also the author of Travels Through the French Riviera, a beautiful coffee table book marrying dreamy watercolour illustrations with practical travel guides. Her clothing line has been picked up by major retailers like Barneys, Anthropologie, Holt Renfrew and her illustration has been commissioned by Vogue, New York Magazine, Flare and so on. During our conversation, Virginia shares the mistakes she made when starting a fashion label at the age of 23 and the lessons she carried with her; she talks about the advice she took, and the ones she chose to ignore; and she shares how her mom becoming a published writer in her 70s has inspired her to never let herself "age into irrelevance".Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
65 minutes | Sep 5, 2019
Rachel Hale on trusting the process
As soon as you enter Rachel Hale's apartment in Bloordale village, you can immediately sense a mix of slowness and vibrancy, just like herself. Rachel is a multi-faceted creative with an extensively diverse background. Her winding path has led her to where she is now - working as a community manager, creative producer and TV host, however, Rachel isn't putting herself in any category and is always seeking to expand personally, professionally and creatively. We chat about her experience and takes on being by-racial; her new moon and full moon rituals; and the power of trusting the process. Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast. Also available on Spotify, Stitcher, and Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
50 minutes | Aug 1, 2019
Arden Wray on the responsibility of storytelling
The first time I met Arden Wray was at another Dear Seeker Claudia Dey's book launch in the Gladstone Hotel. Although our exchange that night was brief, I had a strong drive to reach out to have a deeper conversation with her I knew OF Arden before that first encounter. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Arden's work, she is a Toronto-based Photographer who specializes in portraits. She has been commissioned by some of the most cherished publications, like The New York Times, British Vogue, while been hired by many indie fashion labels to bring their visions to life. Her photos have this magical power to connect you with the subject who you inherently may have nothing in common with. Travelling between Toronto and New York, Arden is using her lens to mostly capture two things she is most inspired by- people and places. The stories she is trying to tell are lingering among the past, the present and the future, and she is always practice the art of storytelling and looking closely.Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast, Spotify, Stitcher, or Soundcloud. Connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
50 minutes | Jul 4, 2019
Deborah Moss on grieving, healing and practising gratitude
Moss & Lam is one of Toronto's most cherished art studios. Their artworks are so far reaching that there is a good chance you've encountered their work, even if you don't realize it. From Milan to Hong Kong, from New York to Toronto, Moss & Lam is known for creating massive, whimsical interior pieces and installations marrying art and architecture with an emphasis on hand craftsmanship. Now, housing a team of 25 talented artists, the Moss Studio has been commissioned by some of the world’s biggest names, such as Louis Vuitton, Tiffany, the Four Seasons hotel, Holt Renfrew, Saks Fifth Avenue, and so on. No doubt, their portfolio is truly impressive. But what I find most inspiring is, despite all of the success, owner Deborah has been living a very humble lifestyle far away from fame and glam. She has been constantly exploring creatively, embracing new challenges, and opening to self-learning and self-discovery, especially when she lost her dear husband Edward Lam, her best friend, her life and business partner, and the father of her two young daughters. Deborah is a woman full of strength, vulnerability, wisdom, resilience, and grace. During our conversation, she speaks thoughtfully about her process of grieving and healing after losing Edward, and generously shares the importance of practicing gratitude and the beauty of risk-taking. After we parted ways, her poetic wisdom lingered in my mind for quite a while.Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast, Spotify, Stitcher, or Soundcloud. Connect with us on Instagram and Spotify.Sign up to Seeker Supply, a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
43 minutes | Jun 6, 2019
Carley Fortune on putting herself out there
You may not be familiar with Carley Fortune if you’re not in the publishing world, but you most likely have heard of all the publications she has played an important role in. Carley started as an intern at Toronto Life and raised her hand when they needed an Associate Online Editor. Then, she joined The Grid as one of the founding members to launch this beloved Toronto weekly news magazine. A couple of years later, she joined forces as the Assistant Editor at at The Globe, and her experiences there eventually led her to the role of Editor in Chief at Chatelaine. Now, Carley is leading a team of 7 as the Executive Editor at Refinery29 Canada. Her extensive background in publications is very impressive. She is someone never shies away from opportunities- she senses them and she seizes them. During our conversation, she shares her experiences of building a team from the ground up, opens up about her struggles of finding her identity as a new mom, and talks about her way of getting in touch with herself. Despite all the fear and unknown, Carley is willing to put herself out there for a bigger purpose.Photography: Vai Yu LawListen and leave us a review on Apple Podcast, Spotify, Stitcher, or Soundcloud. Connect with us on Instagram and Spotify. Leave us a review/comment on Apple Podcast.Sign up to Seeker Supply to receive the exclusive rapid fire chat with Carley, local gems recommended by her and things I've personally discovered. It's a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
52 minutes | May 9, 2019
Tammy Yiu on making art discoverable and accessible
Carefully tracking down local dear seekers has been such a pleasure since the launch of this project. When discovered an intriguing woman in the city, I’m always like a little kid in a candy store. On a rare occasion, someone would introduce me to a potential guest who they think might be a great fit, but in today’s case, it was a husband who DM me on Instagram to recommend his wife, Tammy Yiu.After connected with Tammy, I knew I had to bring this woman on board. Working as a freelance designer, Tammy co-founded Partial in 2015 in a hope to make great art discoverable and accessible. She feels a deep sense of responsibility to her community of artists and has a strong desire to make this platform a support system for artists, a discovery channel for art seekers, and an inspirational space for people who are not yet into buying art. Tammy is fuelled with positive and kindred spirit. To know her is to lover her.Sitting down on her kitchen table in her open loft at the borderline of Parkdale and Roncesvalles, we chat about her childhood years growing up in Oakville; the things she learnt from her successful entrepreneurial father; and the importance and inevitability of pivoting.Photography: Vai Yu LawConnect with us on Instagram and Spotify. Leave us a review/comment on Apple Podcast.Sign up to our the Seeker Supply to receive exclusive rapid fire chat with Tammy, local gems recommended by her and things I’ve personally discovered. It’s a monthly love letter for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
45 minutes | Apr 11, 2019
Lauren Sellen on the emotional intension behind art making
It seems that we are living in a time when floral design is having its renaissance. A group of florists around the world is not afraid to push boundaries and is literally flourishing on Instagram. One of our very own, Lauren Sellen, creative mind behind Coyote Flowers, is amongst this new wave. She not only has worked with cult-following brands like Glossier, collaborated with other disciplinary artists on fascinating editorials, but has also established a group of like-mined clientele who embraces unconventional beauty. Lauren has a lot of emotions. She admits that. And she expresses her emotional intension through her art. While nature is her canvas, flower is the extension of her body, her soul and her brush stroke. From Winnipeg to Ottawa to Toronto and now in Hamilton, Lauren has been seeking peacefulness. She is getting close. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
48 minutes | Mar 14, 2019
Jenny Bird on the power of manifestation
From small town Elora to Toronto to the world, from selling her jewellery on her kitchen table to now over 500 retail stores internationally, from having fertility challenges to now mother to two, Jenny Bird is one of those women who made something out of nothing- through her strength to persevere over and over again and through her power of manifestation. As a young girl growing up in a town with a population of 3000, Jenny socked herself in arts and crafts. along with big dreams and deep understanding of the responsibility to provide for the family. Now, at 42, Jenny is at a very comfortable space with success and recognitions under her belt, she continues to seek for deeper meaning. Something bigger is calling her- she feels strongly. We were lucky to have caught Jenny in a moment of change- shortly before she gave birth to her second child Georgie See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
36 minutes | Feb 14, 2019
Juli Baker on conscious living
On a super snowy day, I carried my recording equipment to the Junction with an extremely excited heart. I've been to Mjölk many times as a customer, but have only been able to admire owner Juli and John's astonishing home from a distance. Located right above the shop, their home has been featured in publications like the Kinfolk Home, Azure.In 2009 when the aesthetic of Scandinavia wasn't taking the internet by storm and when the similarities of Scandinavian and Japanese design and philosophy weren't yet recognized by the masses, Juli and John were already on the path of building this sanctuary space stocked with carefully considered objects, furnitures and antiques. Not only that, through their in-house magazine and occasional exhibitions, Juli and John are also offering their customers a way of conscious living.Working in sync with her husband John Baker, Juli is bringing her previous experiences with art curation, photography and publishing , except this time, all on her own terms.Photography: Vai Yu LawConnect with us on Instagram and Spotify. Leave us a review/comment on Apple Podcast.Sign up to our newsletter to receive exclusive rapid fire chat with Juli, gems recommended by her and things I've personally discovered. It's a monthly Seeker Supply for seekers by seekers. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
52 minutes | Nov 22, 2018
Tracy Wan on exploring the world of scent
Tracy Wan has a way with words and has a nose for scents. This Toronto-based writer followed her parents' wish by going to Architecture school but then followed her own heart by dropping out. It doesn't take long to realize Tracy's spectacular ability to articulate words, thoughts and feelings. Using this superpower of hers, Tracy managed to write for a living, which comes unsurprisingly as a surprise to her parents.Running a passion project Invisible Stories alongside her day job, Tracy is set out to debunk the myths of perfuming making by featuring independent perfumers who came upon the craft the unconventional way and exploring our relationships with scents through memory, language and travel. To know her is to love her. Sitting in her charismatic apartment, we smelled some perfumes she made, dived deep into her memories as a kid, and explored the world of scents. Photography: Vai Yu LawConnect with us on Instagram and Spotify. Leave us a review/comment on Apple Podcast.For a chance to be included in the next episode, share your questions, comments or stories by recording something with your phone and send the MP3 file to email@example.comMusic: Canon in D Major by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)Source: http://incompetech.com/music/royalty-free/index.html?isrc=USUAN1100301Artist: http://incompetech.com/ See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
53 minutes | Nov 8, 2018
Fran Miller on marrying things interest her into one beauty line
10 years ago when green beauty was not really a thing, natural beauty products just started to surface, and luxury handmade beauty lines were nowhere to be found, Fran was experimenting in her basement with ingredients from health food stores - Not for anyone else, but to combat with her own skin problems.A few years later when she was bouncing back and forth between high-end retail and wholesale with no self- fulfillment, Fran had a now-or-never moment and decided to give this beauty line a try. With her curiosity at heart and spectacular sensibility, her namesake skincare line F. Miller has since gained recognition in many major publications such as Vogue, The File, Into The Gloss, and Monocle just to name a few. Outside of publications, F. Miller has been spotted on many IT girls' bathroom counters and top shelves.Fran is set out to bridge the gap between luxury and natural skincare and to redefine what handmade beauty products can mean. She is not just selling bottles of skincare products, but rather marrying all the things she is personally interested into one and expressing that through her beauty line.Inside Fran's house where the old seamlessly mingles with the new, we chat about her high school crush, humble beginnings, and the next moves for F.Miller.Photography: Vai Yu LawConnect with us on Instagram and Spotify. Leave us a review/comment on Apple Podcast.For a chance to be included in the next episode, share your questions, comments or stories by recording something with your phone and send the MP3 file to firstname.lastname@example.org See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
55 minutes | Oct 25, 2018
Beth Nicholson Crago on choosing what to suffer for
There are some women that just stand out from the crowd and attract your attention like a big magnet. That was Beth Nicholson Crago when I first met her at an event.I approached Beth and shamelessly asked: "What's your story?" Turns out, she is one of the two amazing ladies behind the best-kept-secret- Opelle, a luxury handbag brand that is designed and handcrafted in Toronto for women looking for something "functional and aesthetically refined".In spite of Beth's impressive career of working at Michael Kors, Derek Lam, Thakoon, while having Jason Wu, Moda Operandi on her client list, Beth confesses that fashion is not her first love. With an English degree from McGill specializing in acting and theatre, Beth was chasing after her dream of becoming an actress. After having her first taste of rejection, she soon realized that she didn't like acting enough to go through the hardships associated with that career. This realization has led her to the door of fashion. The rest is history.On the couch beside her son's play table, she opens up about the conversation she had with her parents during high school that sparked something in her, we exchange feelings about the Old and New Celine, and she shares the struggles she chose to go through and the ones she turned away from. Music: Canon in D Major by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)Source: http://incompetech.com/music/royalty-free/index.html?isrc=USUAN1100301Artist: http://incompetech.com/ See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
0 minutes | Oct 11, 2018
Nancy Chen on the science of art
Born in Massachusetts, raised shortly in Toronto and Ottawa, and then grew up in Hong Kong, this neuroscience graduate has been stretching her interests and experiences far and wide over plenty of cities and multiple industries. After working as an event producer/promoter in Shanghai, Nancy came back to Toronto and co-founded Mansion- a music promotion and event planning group that produced Toronto’s most unique and desirable events.After exiting the music scene, Nancy didn’t stop dreaming. In three years, she has created three restaurants- from German street eats to authentic Chinese. Now, when Nancy is not busy making sure all the food is up to her standard at SO SO food club, she probably is strategizing award-winning campaigns at Sid Lee. When she is not solving problems at work, she might be conceptualizing her next big idea.Indeed, she is a busy woman- with smart ideas and big ambitions, but she never makes her move blindly. Utilizing her science background with an extremely creative mind, Nancy can’t get enough of bringing unique concepts to life and creating experiences that are hard to ignore and forget.Before sitting on the couch with Nancy in her beautiful Loft, I paid a visit to SO SO just to make sure the food is truly authentic. And yes, I was impressed. For the first time, I was proud of my own cuisine- the kind of food I grew up with, crave for every weekend, and cannot leave without. Being a rebel with a strategic plan, artistic heart, and cause in mind, Nancy is set out to bring real Chinese food made from scratch and of the best ingredients to Toronto. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
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