It’s very easy to be thankful for so much when one is inspired on a daily basis by folks all are carving a place in the world for their work. Maggie Pate of the newly branded Nåde (formerly Inks + Thread) is one of those artists not easy to forget. In fact, upon stumbling on one of her dress designs on Pinterest ages ago, I was immediately obsessed with her work. So, you can imagine how much joy it brings me that she will be at our Austin Holiday Fair in person this weekend.
Where did your business name come from? Is there an interesting history behind?
I started my career as a print-designer with hand painted silk. The name inks + thread stemmed from those basic elements needed to create.
Have you always been passionate about design?
Seems like I have always been doing some kind of design whether it be painting, crafting or making.
When/Why did you start working in this particular craft/field?
After moving from NYC to Tennessee, I realized there was something missing in my life. Everything had slowed down but I was still feeling as anxious and stressed as I did in NYC. It was then that I decided to start designing again. Immediately I felt like I had direction and more energy again.
What do you think sets your designs apart from others?
Most slow fashion brands use stock fabric but my designs start with the fabric. I don’t use stock fabric – so the print and hues are just as unique as the cut and silhouette of the garment.
Have you had any major failures? If so, what were some important insights gained?
I tend to like to jump ahead – getting overwhelmed with where I’d like the brand to be rather than just being ok with where it is. When that happens stress and anxiety set in and I start to make impulsive decisions. The best insight I have to counter those emotions is to not compare your chapter 7 to another’s chapter 37.
Have you sacrificed anything to create your business? If so, what was it, and do you have any regrets?
I sacrifice everyday. Sleep, social gatherings, vacations. Plus I don’t have investors so I have to save and fund everything myself.
What has been your proudest/favorite moment since creating your business?
Being asked to make prints for established brands has made me really proud. The fact that my tiny label is on their radar is mind-blowing!
How does the city you live in influence your work?
My clothing line is much more colorful than I would have expected it to be – since I am a neutral type of gal. But I can only assume that that is because I live the mountains of Tennessee which are always bursting with colors year round.
What valuable experience/knowledge did you have before starting your business?
Luckily, I worked in the fashion industry for years so I know a lot of the ins and outs. Timelines and resources are big and I already had a general idea of those expectations.
What are some inspirations for your work?
Texture and hues always inspire me most.
What are some tips or suggestions you’d like to offer to fellow makers?
Don’t limit yourself and your work. My business has taken turns I didn’t expect it to – which has only made my work more rewarding.