Featured Designer: Everingham & Watson

FK chats to Susie & Liz the team behind Brisbane based label Everingham & Watson, putting a new twist on iconic Australia!

Tell us a bit about EVERINGHAM & WATSON and what products we can expect to discover?
Everingham & Watson design and also source gifts and homewares with a deliberate Australian feel. We like to think that our range blends classic and new that has a timeless appeal. Our own range E&W showcasing our own designs in the form of textiles, blackboards, jewellery as well as a commissioned range of ceramics.

Who are the team behind EVERINGHAM & WATSON and what are their roles?
Susie Everingham and Liz Watson own and run Everingham and Watson. We have very diverse backgrounds but very similar aspirations for E&W! When we started the business we soon discovered, (through trial and error mostly!) the roles that suited both of us best. For Susie this was the operation and day to day management of the business, the implementation of the manufacturing of our products and being the sounding board for Elizabeth! Liz has naturally taken the role of graphic and web designer. She is the social media lover of the pair and does that job well. The business has given Liz an outlet for her love of finding products and developing new products and designs. Susie and Liz work together to develop new products and make them, as well as deciding just what will fit within their mix at Everingham and Watson. All major decisions are made together.

What inspires your work? and what keeps you motivated creatively?
Our inspiration comes from lots of different places. We have big plans for the business, but we are determined to keep it real and are mindful of our budget. We are inspired by our surroundings, our studio situated on acreage covered in gum trees in Brisbane’s west. We are also inspired by creative people and businesses who develop functional, beautiful items with real substance about them. We love colour too and original time honored style. Timeless pieces appeal, items that age gracefully!

What is your creative workspace like, and what inspires you about your surroundings?
Liz lives in a rambling Queenslander in inner Brisbane. She is more organic than Susie, lots of papers, snippets from magazines, boxes of papers and photocopies from a million years ago! Susie prefers less clutter but loves her studio with it’s big timber doors and cement floors surrounded by native trees and birds. (See earlier point about strengths and weaknesses). We are both inspired by people who do what they love.

What challenges have you faced starting your own label, and what are some things you love about it?
We started out with a shared love of old furniture and hoped to do something in the second hand/ antique arena. We soon realized this would involve a lot of heavy lifting! We kept up our discussions and soon found that our ideas quickly developed into something more. Over many cups of tea and trips around town sourcing furniture, the idea for the E&W Pop Up shop developed. We held the Pop Up late last year (2011) to test our ideas and see if we really could (as such good friends) work together! It was a roaring success and we loved every minute of the process. It was a great way to test our ideas and our market and helped in the decision making for our current collection. We were sad to close the doors (when we sold out!) and realized we would, indeed, take E&W further. Initially our challenges involved defining our roles and also our business model and plan. Now our major challenge is finding the time each week to do everything we need and want to do for E&W! We love being our own bosses, the crazy emailing at odd hours and the hysterically happy telephone calls when something “big” happens. It has been an exciting and fulfilling experience for us both. We are proud too of the fact that we are still great mates, and haven’t killed each other yet! Our friendship has just become more solid from the process.

What aspirations do you have for your label in the future?
Lots more beautiful products that we design and manufacture ourselves, more road tripping, more Pop Ups, perhaps more styling and events too…


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