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Monday, November 06, 2006

Mod Green Pod

Hanna's and Lotta's work both have a similar playfulness and rhytm as the patterns of Mod Green Pod, which is my next featured interview. I had seen their wallpapers and fabrics in design magazines, but was not aware that they were local to Boston...until I visited the South end Open Studios [Boston] and found myself in the middle of Lisa's Studio. I was so excited! I have loved their patterns from the minute I first saw them, and the great news is that all of their products are organic, which makes them even more appealing.

Can you tell us a little bit about Mod Green Pod and how it all got started?
Mod Green Pod’s mission is to merge high design with environmentally responsible and home-healthy materials. Our first collection of products are for the home – upholstery fabrics and wallpapers. We design and produce these products so that they are eco-friendly yet hip not hippie.

Nancy and I decided to start a business together a few years ago when we realized that not only did we share common goals and aesthetics, but we also had extremely complimentary skills sets. Nancy was a successful and talented textile designer and artist, while my career had been focused on running businesses – MBA from Dartmouth and finance and operations with Kate Spade. From a goal perspective, Nancy and I were both interested in starting a business that had a favorable social impact. We didn’t want to introduce yet another textile product to an already saturated market! After some more research on the benefits of organic cotton, we decided that focusing on using organic cotton and non-toxic paints and finishers would be a great way to achieve a positive impact and also differentiate our product from others on the market.

We also chose to produce our textiles as a high-end, artisan quality line. Our fabric and wallpapers are all hand table-screened in New England in very small batches. The process gives each piece a unique, luxurious appeal, differentiating our fabrics from mass produced textiles.

Many of Mod Green Pod's patterns are very organic in their form, where does the inspiration come from?
Mod Green Pod’s premiere line, the Jubilee collection, is inspired by the traditionally baroque damask. By paring down a classic motif into sleek modern lines, we hoped to create eye-catching prints that appeal to a broad range of tastes, from traditional to vanguard. In our Butterfly Jubilee print, you can see the influence of nature in our work. We wanted to make sure to tie our environmental mission with our design mission in some way. Butterflies are a colorful and whimsical part of our natural environment and were a perfect fit for our first collection.

Can you tell us why the environmental aspects are so important to you and maybe tell us a bit about your relationship with the environment.
For our fabrics, Mod Green Pod uses organic cotton (we are introducing a hemp/organic cotton blend shortly!) grounds to print on, low impact water-based paints, and no harmful finishing chemicals. Once you start to peel back the layers of the onion, it is truly astonishing how many chemicals are applied to a “conventional” fabric. So, we take a lot of pride in the fact that our fabrics will not off-gas in your home and are safe for anyone with allergies or sensitive skin.

Nancy and I are mothers (or mothers-to-be), and our dedication to producing sustainable products is highly influenced by that. Not only do we want to leave this world a better place for our children, but we also want to make sure that our homes are safe havens for our children. And ideally, we want to provide this safe haven, while not sacrificing style or design – something that is important to both of us.

Nancy’s green-built studio in Austin, TX. My studio is a detached garage apartment behind my house. I love that my commute is so short and that i can wear pajamas to work each day. I also love the feeling of being in a tree house. My space has lots of windows and is surrounded by gorgeous old pecan trees so I'm literally surrounded by green when I'm at work. I'm also figuratively surrounded by green because the structure was built using sustainable materials.

Lisa’s studio in the South End of Boston. I love my studio as it gives me a place to experiment with our products. Recently, we wallpapered part of our wall.

Nancy and Lisa, Mod Green Pod. Thank you ladies!


Blogger lisa said...

Thank you so much for this incredible series of surface designs and designers! It's been so endlessly inspiring. Some of the designers I was already wild about, but many of them have been new for me, thanks to you. Honestly, I've wanted to comment almost every single day so far, and have only now finally gotten around to it ... and by now I'm overwhelmed with the richness of what you've brought! Pattern & surface design are the areas I'm interested in working in now (after many years working as a graphic designer), and I know I'll be referring to your pages again for more inspiration. ~ Lisa

11:20 AM  
Blogger red.house said...

:: Lisa,
thank you so much for your compliments and encouragement! I am so happy that you have enjoyed the series of surface designers that I have been sharing! your comment made my day!!


1:09 PM  

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