One of the greatest things about owning a store is the relationship you develop with your customers...but also your vendors. I remember the day that landscape designer Steve Siegrist and artist Renee Lotenero came into the store with a box of their new planters...
"Do you think anyone would want to buy these? We're calling them Esther Pottery."
We were speechless. "Are you kidding me? How many can you make and how fast?"
With their completely original perspective and one-of-a-kind handmade beauty, Esther Pottery has grown to be one of our best-sellers.
And we love how they are always evolving. Their collections have expanded to include Big Sur (beautiful blues and grey), Joshua Tree (warm browns), Death Valley (sand white), Pt. Reyes (moody blues and dark grey), Monochromatic Series (solid bright blue) and their newest, La Brea (tar black). We do our best to keep these beautiful pots in stock, but since each one has to be shot individually, we often sell out before they even get online.
Another artist who we are so happy to have been a part of his developing career is Jonathan Cross. Working as an artist's assistant to such greats as Richard Serra, Jonathan's love for cactus and succulents prompted him to begin his study of ceramics.
Now, quite a few years later, the style he has developed speaks to the rugged, masculine essence of the clay as he forms it into chunky, modern pieces that are now being bought by museums and collectors. We are always excited when a new batch comes into the store.
Few Bits, the brainchild of local wood artist C.C. Boyce, shows that planters do not have to be ceramic either. We were thrilled when interior designer Julie Maigret made the introduction to us and have been stocking her creations ever since. Look for her beautiful candle holders, too.
Another wonderful find was the trio of women who call themselves Me Like Clay. Titia Estes, whose work is shown above, has her studio in the downtown Brewery Building where the three women work. This is the view from their studio...so jealous!
Her strong visual style is really compelling. An air plant would look amazing in these containers with the glaze enticing you from below.
Susan Wong's work is very graphic and evocative. She also uses many different forms...
...like this stunning garden bell. One of my favorite pieces she does are called Bee Bars which are basically what they are called...watering holes for bees.
But the vases from the Hastings Collection are proving to be very popular as well. She has also created original tableware for local Los Angeles eateries and is always working on new ideas. A Nantucket fountain perhaps?
These little beauties by Jen Kuroki will just make you happy.
And these hanging versions would make an amazing gift for anyone.
We so love our local Los Angeles artists that we are hosting an Artisanal Marketplace on Sunday December 21st in our Brick & Mortar Store. All the artists will be there and I know they are bringing items we don't always carry. If you're in town, please stop by!