Designer Spotlight: Emily Hendrie of Meadowbrook Lane
Tell us a little about yourself and your style of art. Hello and thanks for this opportunity! I’m Emily and I’m an artist. I grew up in Chester County, Pennsylvania surrounded by old stone barns, horse farms and acres to explore. Throughout the years I found myself loving several different art mediums like graphite, pastel, charcoal, digitally, but most especially gauche and watercolors. I graduated from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art earning my BFA in Metal / Jewelry / CAD-CAM , so I’m also a classically trained jeweler too. As a creative person, I’ve always felt the need to dabble in as much different art as possible. Discovering one medium helps me develop my skills with other mediums, while keeping my creative juices fresh. After working in the giftware industry for many years I was craving just to create art, which is when I decided to create my brand Meadowbrook Lane. It is truly in homage to my childhood in Chester County, PA. I’ve developed a splashy watercolor style and love to keep my subjects a bit simple, where (most of the time) I believe less is more.
When did you start putting your artwork on products? 2015 I started to dabble in selling art prints, which expanded to stationery, temporary tattoos then to my flour sack towels, vinyl stickers and wrapping papers.
Do you digitally print all of your own products, or do you have them printed by a printing company? I have researched and devoted a lot of time into the supplies I use and the products I make. So, I have invested in really nice printers for my art prints and stationery, but I outsource everything else. I learned pretty early on to do only the things that I love to do myself, then leave everything else up to the other professionals. Work smarter not harder.
Have you ever licensed any of your artwork or are you mainly focused on direct-to-consumer sales and wholesaling? I am open to licensing, but not currently with any of my existing work. Half of my time is split between freelance artwork / design work and the other half of my time is dedicated to direct to consumer and wholesale of my products.
Some of your most popular products are the Philly Foods prints. What inspired you to paint these iconic Philadelphia foods and why do you think they resonate so well with customers? I wanted to create a collection that would not only be inspired by the Philadelphia area, has not really been done before, but would work well with my watercolor style. Food delights everyone and the right kind of foods evoke cherished memories. It started with my Philly Soft Pretzel paintings, then grew from there. It’s so heartwarming when I receive little notes when customers buy from my Philly Foods collection, with how my paintings brought back precious memories of them getting cheesesteaks with their father every Sunday.
Do you only sell your products online? I sell my products online and I also have several wonderful shops (locally and nationally) that buy wholesale from me. I also just opened a booth in a co-op shop in Medford, NJ called The Shoppes at Medford Mill.
Has your business been affected in any way by the pandemic? I was one of the fortunate ones, where the pandemic did not affect my business negatively. Since people were stuck at home, I noticed more people were on the hunt for art and home décor items to redecorate and keep their homes cheerful during a tough year.
Do you have any advice or resources you've found helpful for artists who want to venture into their own art-based product sales? What has helped me is surrounding myself (and making genuine connections) with other like-minded artists in all sorts of mediums. Some artists have been in this game for years, while others are just starting out. It’s wonderful knowing we can cheer each other on and turn to each other for some knowledge if we have a question about anything. Social media and craft shows can also be a helpful tool connecting with other artists or shops. Lastly, do your research on companies you want to work with creating your products. Just because they are cheap doesn’t mean it’s quality. So, take your time when developing.
What's next for you and Meadowbrook Lane? In 2022, I’m hoping to create more art, expanding my food collections and a few other concepts. I’m also currently working on a larger project, close to my heart, which I hope to share later in the year as well.