I’m foremost an artist, designer and inventor. I’m a bit of a renaissance woman, as I do so many arts and crafts, and like to think I excel at most of them. I’ve worked professionally as a graphic designer for the past 16 years, and love that my work lets me experience the creative process every day. Design is more than a passion for me, it’s more of an innate drive; almost everything I see around me, I think of how I could make it, or make it better, and beautiful. I have designs for textiles, furniture, jewelry, art objects, housewares, utility items, you name it!
I learn how to do what I need to produce the designs that I create in my mind, which is really how HIP Pads began. I had just a little experience with sewing before my daughter was born. When I needed a handy under-the-butt pad and all of the products out there had some drawback, I started inventing my own, and that was the beginning of this journey. Before I knew it, I was making them for friends and baby showers, and everyone who tried them wanted to pass them on to their friends, too.
The thing I enjoy most about the creative process is probably working out a problem. Every design is a puzzle, to make something visually pleasing, or perfectly functional, and hopefully both. It’s the part where you sweat just a bit, wondering how you’re going to pull it off, if you have the expertise to create what you envisioned, if you can balance all the aspects of the given equation. For me it’s usually equally challenging, stimulating, frustrating and satisfying.
With HIP Pads, it wasn’t so much of a thought process than a natural conclusion; the challenge was solving all the problems with the other things out there: the soft flannel is double-sided, and has natural absorbency – there’s no need for the bulky layer of terry cloth that most of the things made for babies have – and the most innovative part of HIP Pads is the leak-proof inner layer. It’s the first product of it’s kind that’s both soft & comforting AND stops leaks. Those big changing table covers are too hard to remove from underneath the baby, and they just make too much laundry. In reality, you’re only going to have maybe two of those, and anyone with a new baby has learned you can go through at least double that in a day with a little “squirt.” HIP Pads are easy to put under and remove without moving the baby. And even if you go through a bunch, you create a minimal amount of laundry. Most of the baby things made are light pastel colors, and after one or two uses, they look gross. Most of the fabrics I select for HIP Pads are purposely dark/bright, camouflaging patterns. Not only are they cool and fun, but they conceal the stains, which means you spend less time scrubbing laundry; no chemical stain-removers near the baby!
I’m very lucky that I get to work at my home studio, and be with my daughter daily. My workroom has four large glass sliding doors, and I love the abundance of natural light and views of our cape honeysuckle trees, which attract a bevy of hummingbirds. I usually work with either music (love the itunes shuffle, no decision making!) or some interesting movie for company (later nights has been Weeds lately, I enjoy the dichotomy of ‘adult’ content and my kid product work!). I’m very excited about getting HIP Pads out to the world, and I’ll happily be introducing some more products to the line soon.