Monday 10 October 2016

Vision, Talent and Sisterhood: The story behind Hunting For George

A classic tale of two enterprising sisters, Lucy Glade-Wright and Jo Harris getting together in 2010 to kick start an online homewares business Hunting for George that would offer more than just the essentials, much much more!

Starting off their company in Jo's spare room six years ago, today Hunting For George is winning accolades and high praise in the small online retail business space. From curating a range of extremely desirable selection of homewares, Jo and Lucy also design their own brand of signature products.

Their story is passionate, authentic and inspiring and I was lucky to catch up with the industrious duo to learn some more.What an interesting name - Hunting For did it originate?

It’s obscure for good reason. We wanted a name with no connotations attached. Lucy simply said ‘Hunting for George’ one day whilst referring to Jo’s daughter Georgia and it stuck.

Can you share with us your creative journey to where you are now?

We started Hunting for George with a sketch book of ideas that documented many, many discussions about what we wanted our shop to be. Originally we wanted to open a bricks and mortar shop but we didn’t have enough capital. We were pretty devastated as we’d spent a lot of time planning what our space would look like. So we instead turned our attention online and decided if we couldn’t create the physical space of our dreams, we’d create the digital space of our dreams instead. Six years later and due to popular demand from our customers we now have a physical space! Our Melbourne Showroom, open every Friday and Saturday. 31 Wangaratta Street, Richmond.

How would you define your style and how has it evolved?

Hunting for George is aspirational and accessible.

Our style is always authentic, unisex with relaxed confidence.

Over time we have become more confident in our designs and the colours and patterns we use mature alongside us.

What has been the inspiration behind Hunting For George & your designs?

We are inspired to create and provide products that are for everyone. We wanted to put our own stamp on the homewares industry and create our own signature style.What has been your favourite collection to date?

Lucy: I fall in love with every collection we do. I know this will sound like I am sitting on the fence, but I love all our collections. We don’t design to seasons, and all our designs complement one another – as we like to encourage our customers to mix and match between collections.

What is a typical workday like for both of you?

Jo is the Operations Director so she manages our team to make sure customer service, product inventory and warehousing is all up to scratch. Lucy is the Brand Director who manages the design and marketing team to make sure Hunting for George is looking the goods.

We both get into work at about 9-9.30am and start the day with a coffee. On Monday’s we meet as a team to have a WIP and outline what is happening for the week. Then around 10am it’s onto the computers to answer emails, design products or update items for the website. We tend to forget about lunch until we’re seriously hungry and then head down Swan St for a quick bite. The afternoon will either be back to the computers or working on more hands on projects. We leave work at different times, depending on what commitments we have, but we always try to be out of the studio by 6pm. Sadly we are prone to catching up on work after dinner, which is a bad habit and we’re trying to break it.

Can you describe the design process?

We always start with an initial concepts stage when designing a new collection. Often this involves sketching, mood boarding, sourcing colours or patterns that we like. We don’t over think this initial phase. Once we have some material to work with to pull out what resonates with us the most, play with different colour combinations and start to get an idea of how the collection will look. Once we have a good idea Lucy takes it to the computer to work out patterns, colours and formats our design for products.

What are you working on at the moment?

Winter 2017 is well underway. Expect strong earthy tones and plenty of texture.

What according to you is the next big thing in bespoke homewares?

Lucy: That’s a tough one as a lot of ground has already been covered in homewares. I think the exciting thing at the moment is seeing new designers with fresh perspectives bringing new life to old concepts. Reimaging basic furniture items like beds, tables and chairs, and being inventive and thoughtful with what materials are used.

What advice can you give those seeking a career in interior design?

Go for it. It’s an exciting time for interiors. My advice to anyone starting out in any industry is to understand what you have to offer and be confident in your abilities. As soon as you believe in yourself, it’s easier for other people to believe in you as well.

What 3 words describe your brand?

Aspirational. Accessible. Authentic.

What is your favourite room in your home and why?

Lucy: My sunroom. It’s an indoor jungle filled with records, sunlight, artwork and a healthy dose of mess.

Jo: My bedroom. I’ve got 2 kids under 10 so I relish my own time in bed, wrapped up in Hunting for George goodness.

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, what does the colour PINK mean to you?

Pink to us represents warmth, femininity and affection.

Where do you see Hunting For George in five years time?

Still kicking arse and making homes awesome, just bigger and better. 

All images by Hunting for George

Their designs are so quintessentially Australian. Fresh, breezy, bright, original and so on trend! The versatility of their designs, make it easy to mix and match favourite pieces from different collections to create exciting, delightful and imaginative spaces.

Jo and Lucy just launched 'Clifton', their latest homewares collection that personifies all that is relaxed, fun and memorable about summer. You can view and shop their gorgeous collections online here. Their bricks and mortar Melbourne showroom is situated at 31 Wangaratta Street, Richmond and is open every Friday and Saturday.

Till next time...get hunting!
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