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Meet the Designer Q & A – KM Elliott Design’s Own Katherine Elliott

K.M. Elliott Design Owner, Katherine Elliott

K.M. Elliott Design Owner, Katherine Elliott

If Katherine Elliott – owner of K.M. Elliott Design and a graduate of the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) with an MFA in Furniture Design – looks happy it’s because she is.

The fan-base for her furniture design continues to grow, she’s started designing and creating truly eye-catching jewelry, and perhaps best of all, Katherine married her long-time love this past fall!
We’re already thrilled to be carrying her Chevron line of jewelry, but as of today, AmpersandVM will be adding Katherine’s Hex line of beautiful earrings and necklaces to the shop, and we couldn’t be happier about it.

And – in the true spirit of the season – there’s more! Soon we will be adding a third line of Katherine’s jewelry, created from reclaimed eyeglass lenses. Check out our Facebook page for instructions on how to win a pair of these soon-to-be-released earrings!  And if you’re looking for something special this holiday season, check out her Chevron and Hex collections, in the shop now

We know it’s hard to resist, so here’s a little peek:

kmelliott_design_hex_1_link_earrings_009_03

Alright, now that you’ve checked out Katherine’s beautiful designs, we’re wagering you can’t wait to learn more about the designer.  Luckily, we couldn’t either, so we sat down with Katie to better understand the inspiration and inner workings of K.M.Elliott Design. Read on to hear more about Katherine’s inspirations, her AMAZING furniture designs, and the place where she’s continually pushing the envelope, her studio:
Ampersand: How do you incorporate good design into your day-to-day life?

Katherine: My wife and I live in a very small apartment, so for us, everyday living is an exercise in good design. I love designing a space as much as I do the objects within it, which is lucky, since using every cubic foot of our apartment is crucial to functioning in our small space. We opted for a mix of simple, almost styleless cabinets to hide away all of our necessities with unique furniture and objects to create a sense of home.

Ampersand: What’s your favorite color (at least for now)?

Katherine: Right now I’m irrationally liking gold. It brings a bit of shine and glam as well as a history to anything it touches.

Ampersand: Do you have a favorite instrument of destruction/creation as an artist and designer?

Katherine: I’m working on a project for my niece right now that draws on my love of creating sculptural wood forms, and my favorite fancy Lie Nielsen spoke shave, a gift from my father, is the perfect tool for the job. I love working the material by hand rather than relying on a power tool. There is more control and sensitivity in creating the final form.

Ampersand: What’s the number one thing you can’t live without in your studio?

Katherine: Organization. When I recently relocated and downsized my studio, I spent months mapping out my new space in AutoCAD, creating a detailed system for everything I need to create my work. I have a hard time letting go of scraps from old projects, and the only way to manage these hoarding tendencies without getting overwhelmed is for everything to have a very specific home. If I know where everything is in my tiny 100 sq ft, my creative process works much more smoothly.

Ampersand: Do you experience artist’s block, and do you have routines to break out of that? I heard a great quote once from George Woodman, who said something along the lines of, “when you don’t know what to do, you still go to your studio and you sharpen your pencils.” What’s your technique?

Katherine: I believe it’s crucial to keep up a routine of going to my studio with or without a specific task at hand. When I’m in the midst of a project I go armed with lists of tasks and timelines, and in the off-time I go to keep my work a part of my everyday life. When in doubt I organize; somehow going through remnants of past projects always seems to inspire me for future ones.

Now that you know the designer a little better, I would like to share with you some of my favorite furniture designs from this talented artist. This first piece is stunning and evokes some mid-century influence with a contemporary spin.

Queen Anne's Lace Chair, featured in Martha Stewart's International Contemporary Furniture offsite exhibit, Input/Output.

Queen Anne’s Lace Chair, featured in Martha Stewart’s International Contemporary Furniture offsite exhibit, Input/Output.

This children’s table and chair set proves that being a parent doesn’t have to mean sacrificing good design.

Lucy's Table for Two

Lucy’s Table for Two, children’s table and chairs made of baltic birch ply, wiggle board, and vinyl.

This cabinet takes a vintage idea – collecting and storing curios – and gives it a very modern look.

Collections Cabinet

Collections Cabinet, a celebration of collections past. Made from walnut, acrylic, brass, and found objects.

Katherine’s work can range from the size of an earring to an entire wall, as with this innovative chair.

Wallpaper Chair

Wallpaper Chair – made from steel, oil glaze and gold leaf.

Katherine’s studio is located in Somerville, MA at the Artist Asylum, an open air warehouse of artist space and inspiration. Always abuzz, this is where the action happens.

Studio Overview

Katherine’s studio at the Artist Asylum in Somerville, MA.

Her studio space is a great sneak peak into the process with lots of ideas milling around her desk, on the shelves, and the walls.

Studio Details

The details of an artist’s  studio.

We’ll be hearing more from Katherine in the future. If you love her designs as much as we do, check out her Chevron and Hex lines of jewelry, or her entire portfolio.

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