Monday, April 25, 2016

Congratulations Beth Krupa Interiors

We keep close connections to our customers. We build relationships that span the years and many of them become friends as well. That's one of the reasons we love going to trade shows like the recent High point Market, it is a chance to reconnect and catch up. All of that goes into how excited we were to hear that Beth Krupa Interiors had won an award from the Interior Design Society. Beth is based in Connecticut, but has local connections...having gone to school at Loyola University Chicago...making us doubly excited.

We had a small part to play in this success, as she used our Cladded Brass Chest as one of the pieces but as you all know it isn't just having great is how you use it! And Beth is fabulous. Congratulations!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Other Interhall exhibitors join us...

Darren has gotten fired up. Ever since our decision to donate 1% of our High Point sales to Equality NC, he has made it a mission to spread the word and encourage others to participate. We're pleased that many of our fellow Interhall exhibitors have agreed. Among those who have made the commitment are:
• Bungalow 5
• Aviva Standoff,
• Natural Curiosities
• Seasonal Living
• Luna Bella
• Nima Oberoi Lunares 
And more are joining every day. Just yesterday the movement spread out of Interhall with the addition of Made Goods. 

We couldn't be happier to have all of these great companies standing together and working to make a positive change. We'd also like to give an extra THANKS! to Bungalow 5 for taking such an active role and helping us stay organized and ever growing. 

Hope everyone has a great market.

Read more about the issue here.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

High Point and North Carolina HB2

When the North Carolina state legislature rushed through HB2 (a one day special session??) and Governor McCrory signed it that evening(!?), we started a conversation internally to determine how we wanted to respond. High Point Market was coming up and it is an important event for us and our customers....and yet this law had a direct deliterious effect to many of our friends, customers, colleagues, family, and neighbors.

What does HB2 do? Among other things, it prohibits local anti-discrimination protections for gay, bisexual and transgender people and restricts transgender bathroom use.  So a city like Charlotte, who wants to make all their citizens feel welcome and accepted, could no longer pass ordinances to effect those goals. We were deeply concerned by this law and its implications We felt it was (and is) an unfair attack on employment, education, and local governance. It encouraged discrimination and is particularly demeaning towards transgender men and women.

So...what to do? Some businesses chose to respond to stop doing business with or in the state. The reasoning is that by applying economic pressure, the state government would change course. This worked on Mike Pence in Indiana, for instance. It is can be a powerful tool, to be sure. We didn't think it was the tool for us.

One of our core values is to support and contribute to our community. We show this in many ways, such as locating our Chicago facility in an underserved neighborhood and participating in political and business committees and action groups to revitalize the area. When given the choice between a positive or a negative action, we try to always choose the positive. More engagement. Louder voices. Taking action. Therefore, we decided to stay involved in the market, be visible, and speak out. We'd find an organization to support.

After reading on the actions taken by the ACLU and Lambda Legal, we started reaching out to our customers and partners in North Carolina to see what they thought and who they would recommend. The organization that came up again and again was Equality NC. After seeing the work they accomplished on The School Violence Protection Act, their advocacy for domestic partnerships, hospital visitation rights, parental rights, and a myriad of other issues, we knew they were the organization for us. As a small organization ourselves, we appreciate the big effects dedicated and enthusiastic people can accomplish.

We reached out to them and have come up with our plan. We are proud to announce that we will be donating 1% of all our High Point Market sales to them directly. We will also have literature supporting their organization in our booth and will support their efforts going forward. If you'd like to join us in our support, contact Darren.

You can read our press release about this issue at Home Accents Today, Furniture Today, and the Greensboro News and Record.