Mia de Lara
Co-creator of Craftsmith, graphic designer, interior stylist, visual author
Co-creator of Craftsmith, interior stylist, photographer, visual author
What keeps you busy on a typical day?
Mia: My day starts with a prayer, then I send my kids off for school. I also try to savor every minute of my "coffee hour.” I normally work on production (products) in the morning, then head to Craftsmith headquarters in the afternoon. At night, I spend time with my kids, paint, read a book or just slow down. I end my day with a prayer as well.
Kitty: I also start and end my day with a prayer. We plan to promote "coffee hour" within the Craftsmith community to inspire other people to actually sit down and taste their coffee instead of rushing out with beverage in hand or drinking it while in the car. We'd like to encourage people to slow down and have a proper breakfast at the table, not while in transit; to have daily conversations with someone or have a moment with yourself over breakfast. In the morning, I normally do site visits (interior styling) and meet clients. Afternoons are usually spent at Craftsmith headquarters and evenings are for production—when my kids are already asleep. Mia and I also do a nightly catch-up call you to discuss how our business is doing.
How do you make the holidays more festive?
Kitty: Our theme for this Christmas is about giving back and celebrating one another. Craftsmith will be doing more collaborations this season and more workshops so we can share our craft. We also aim to help other creatives by housing works of local artists—soon.
Mia: Our mantra for this season is give back, celebrate one another, expect nothing, and appreciate everything. We will also put up a “promise tree” as an alternative to the usual Christmas tree. The idea is to encourage people to make a promise to their selves— it could be a promise to start doing something you’ve put off for a while, or promise to try something new or a promise to build something. Anything. We will encourage people to write down their promise, hang it on the tree, we will keep the promise for them, and they could go back to the store whenever they want and be reminded of a promise they made to their selves.
Kitty: It also symbolizes how Craftsmith started. We made a promise to ourselves, and a year after, here we are. We hope to inspire others thru the “promise tree.”
How do we infuse the signature Craftsmith "look” in our holiday décor?
Kitty: (Un)styling need not be expensive. Find beauty in the everyday ordinary. Display items that remind you of a story or a tale. Look at your possessions from a different perspective, move them around and beauty will come out naturally. Like take for example my collection of dried flowers or colored pasta or coffee stained artwork—they’re ordinary objects that convey a powerful message and give life to a space. (I will send a picture of our wall at the store).
What do you like to do outside your work life?
Mia: We are at our happiest when we are creating, when we work with our hands - so work doesn’t feel like work.
Kitty: Yes! When we are not creating, it means our mommy hat is on! Holidays are all about sharing good vibes!
What do you love about running Craftsmith?
Mia: Working with an amazingly talented team who make running the business seem like a day at the park. Great things happen when you are surrounded by people who are better than yourself.
Kitty: The best thing about running Craftsmith is being able to do what you love to do and working with people who also do what they love to do.
How do you #ownyourstep?
Mia: We keep dreaming and we keep doing.
Kitty: I read somewhere that a bird sitting in a tree is never afraid that the branch will break. Her trust is not in the branch, but on her own wings. Believe in yourself.
What do you love best about the holidays?
Mia: It's a season for giving… giving back. A season for celebrating… celebrating one another.
Kitty: I love that the holidays is a season of gatherings, a season of rekindling shared spirit.