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Why Do We Have Things?

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Have you ever wondered about the people who made your favorite mug, shirt or chair? In Why Do We Have Things?, Rita Mehta of The American Edit and Erin Husted of Hackwith Design House interview the independent designers, artists, small business owners and creatives behind our favorite things.

Have you ever wondered about the people who made your favorite mug, shirt or chair? In Why Do We Have Things?, Rita Mehta of The American Edit and Erin Husted of Hackwith Design House interview the independent designers, artists, small business owners and creatives behind our favorite things.
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Have you ever wondered about the people who made your favorite mug, shirt or chair? In Why Do We Have Things?, Rita Mehta of The American Edit and Erin Husted of Hackwith Design House interview the independent designers, artists, small business owners and creatives behind our favorite things.




S2 01: Melissa Coleman, The Faux Martha & The Minimalist Kitchen

Rita talks to Melissa Coleman, blogger at The Faux Martha and author of The Minimalist Kitchen, about things.


024: Jaime Derringer, Design Milk

Today’s guest is Jaime Derringer, the founder of Design Milk, Dog Milk and Adorn Milk, cohost of the Clever podcast, an artist, podcaster, musician, etc., etc. Jaime talks to Rita about the process of starting Design Milk, about slowly and practically furnishing her home, about maintaining an identity outside of her brand(s), the things she finds the most exciting in design, and even about virtual reality and 3d printing.


023: Building a smart, thoughtful business with Lizzie and Kathryn Fortunato of Lizzie Fortunato

Get to know sisters Lizzie and Kathryn Fortunato, owners of the jewelry brand, Lizzie Fortunato. Rita talks to Lizzie and Kathryn about starting their business, the locations and experiences that influence the collection, focusing on thoughtful, responsible production and collections and designing a home.


022: Aligning Your Business With Your Artistic Process with Rebecca Atwood of Rebecca Atwood Designs

Today’s guest is Rebecca Atwood, the founder and maker behind Rebecca Atwood Designs, a Brooklyn-based line of home goods that focus on the artistic process. Erin & Becca talk about how Becca's career experience designing for key retailers led her to launch her own collection, about learning all of the different aspects of owning your own business, and about building a thoughtful business that aligns with your own ideals.


21: Nora McInerny Purmort

Get to know Nora McInerny Purmort, author of “It’s Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool Too), a memoir written after Nora’s husband, Aaron, died from brain cancer. Nora, Erin, & Rita talk about Nora’s experiences writing the book, navigating social media – from hate follows to finding support through people you’d have never found otherwise, and Nora’s perspective on “things” – the reminders and memories she has of Aaron, why they matter, and, also, why they don’t. Instead of a sponsor for today’s...


020: Mary Macgill



019: Listening to your instincts to build a business that you love, with artist and textile designer Caroline Z. Hurley

Get to know Caroline Z. Hurley, an incredible artist in New York who is known for beautiful block printed textiles. Caroline and Rita talk about the different experiences that led hear to her current career, about following and listening to your instincts, and about embracing change and opportunities as they come your way. Thank you to Wright Bedding for sponsoring Why Do We Have Things? and this bonus episode of the podcast. Use code “theamericanedit” for 15% off any purchase at...


017: Finding Balance and Creating Value as Small Business Owners with Kelli Murray of Rylee & Cru and Sam Larson of Lone Flag

Get to know Kelli Murray of Rylee & Cru and Sam Larson ofLone Flag, Other Sons, and Hold. Erin, Kelli, and Sam talk aboutbuilding separate businesses as a married couple, creating the bestproduct by focusing on the value as opposed to (just) the ethics,the actual process that goes into making products and growing abusiness, and, why we should all shop a little bit more like ourdads.This podcast is sponsored by Victor Athletics & Wilson &Willy's.


015: xys with Zinzi Edmundson of Knit Wit Magazine

Get to know Zinzi Edmundson, the editor of Knit Wit Magazine, a print magazine that celebrates the dynamic world of contemporary fiber arts and craft. Rita & Zinzi talk about the process of starting a print magazine, the current crafting movement, and the feminism in the textile arts world.


014: Building a business is like riding a rollercoaster, with Courtney Kates Garcia of Maison du Soir

Get to know Courtney Kates Garcia, the founder of Maison du Soir, a contemporary sleepwear collection designed and made in LA. Rita talks to Courtney about launching her collection, pep talks and thought processes that get them through the day, and the idea of failing - everyday. Thanks to our sponsors: Nicely Noted Victor Athletics - use code "americanedit" for 20% off your purchase!


013: Starting a daily creative project with Mary Jo Hoffman of Still Blog

Get to know Mary Jo Hoffman, the founder of Still Blog, a photo-a-day-blog featuring objects found in nature during daily walks. Mary Jo started her creative ritual five years ago and recently celebrated 1500 photos – and the launch of product collaborations with both Target & West Elm! Rita Talks to Mary Jo about her creative process, showing your work, and putting yourself out there to accomplish your goals.


012: From architecture to merchandising with Alexandra Sklar of The Merchant Home

Get to know Alexandra Sklar, the founder and merchandising director of The Merchant Home. Alexandra and Rita talk about about her transition from architecture to merchandising, sources of inspiration, purposefully cultivating and supporting women within the design industry, and Alexandra’s new project, TheYear of Open.


011: Sustainability - in products and in business - with Erin Dollar of Cotton & Flax

Get to know Erin Dollar, Erin Dollar, the founder and maker of Cotton & Flax, a Los Angeles-based line of handmade textile home goods made using natural materials, including linen fabrics and eco-friendly water-based inks. Erin & Erin talk about sustainability - both in products and in business, building the right business for you, regardless of what the industry tells you you should do, and using social media for good - and to make real, meaningful connections.


010: Makers vs. Business Owners vs. Artists with Susan Connor, textile designer

Get to know Susan Connor, the self-taught pattern designer and artist whose eponymous collection features beautiful hand made, block-printed textiles. Susan & Rita talk about learning by doing, trends vs. design, and the differences between “makers” and “business owners”. This episode is sponsored byNicely Noted&Hackwith Design House


009: From Jewelry to Kitchen Towels Finding the Value in The Things We Keep” with Kay Wang of The Things We Keep

Get to know Kay Wang the owner and jewelry designer of The Things We Keep, a home and jewelry line based on the idea that of all the things we accumulate in our lifetime, the things that stay with us are the things we keep most dear to us.


005: From Vintage to Fragrance, Building a Thoughtful Business with Kate Jennings of Na Nin

Get to know Kate Jennings, founder of Na Nin. Kate talks to Erin about her transition from school teacher to shop owner, the songs and memories that inspire her fragrance brand, and about building a thoughtful, responsible business. Shownotes are available at www.theamericanedit.com/podcast This episode is sponsored by Appointed, Hackwith Design House, and Wilson & Willy's.


003: From Fine Art to Fashion Design with Lisa Hackwith of Hackwith Design House

Get to know Lisa Hackwith, fashion designer and founder of Hackwith Design House. Lisa, Erin(who also happens to be Lisa's business partner) and Rita talk about Lisa's education in fine art and her transition to fashion design, why she decided to reinvent the typical fashion calendar, how she found her following on social media, andproducing her collection thoughtfully and responsibly in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Shownotes are available at www.theamericanedit.com/podcast