10 Questions with Kate Hespenheide and Briana Martin

Briana Martin (left) & Kate Hespenheide (right)

What is your favorite iconic chair:
Briana: The Eames Molded Plastic Chair, specifically in white with wooden dowell legs and the crisscrossing metal. It is simple, elegant, practical and a classic.
Kate: Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona chair. My family actually purchased the chair and ottoman when I was much younger, but at the time I didn’t understand the significance. I only knew it as the “guitar chair” because it was where my father could lean back and play without worrying about hitting his elbows on any chair arms. When I finally learned about the chair and its designer I was so excited that I had been able to grow up with such an important iconic design.

What is your favorite California destination:
B: Growing up in the midwest, California seemed like only a dream to me. Each spot I have seen is more beautiful and different than the last. If I had to choose one location, I’d say the beaches of San Diego are my favorite.
K: Growing up my family would take annual trips to Bass Lake, near Yosemite. I loved spending time on the lake while still being able to enjoy the mountains and trees.

What is your favorite color:
B: I usually don’t admit it, but pink is my favorite color.
K: More often than not I find myself selecting burnt orange and mint green for my designs. I love that they are reminiscent of mid-century modern design and that they are contrasting without being too overwhelming.

What is your go-to outfit:
B: On a typical day, I wear my favorite skinny jeans, a neutral tank top with a cardigan, and my brown knee high boots or sandals.
K: On an average day you will find me wearing dark skinny jeans, a cardigan, and boots, with my curly hair as my biggest accessory.

Where would we find you on the weekend:
B: During the school year the only place you would find me is my cubicle in the design studio at school; If it’s before noon I’m usually alone. During the summer I’m most likely grabbing a drink in Chicago with my friends.
K: To be honest I spend most of my weekends in my studio at school. When I do find some free time I enjoy spending it with friends, going to coffee shops, and walking down the street to the beach.

Gold or Silver:
B: I always use silver in my designs. But if I’m choosing jewelry I prefer gold.
K: I love delicate, silver jewelry.

Beer or Wine:
B: Beer on a summer day; Wine on a winter night.
K: I enjoy both, but if I had to choose I would say dry, white wine.

Beach or Mountains:
B: There is nothing better than a gorgeous day at the beach. But if I wanted to be more active, I’d choose snowboarding on the mountains.
K: Even though I’ve always lived near the beach I enjoy the time I’ve spent in the mountains. I love off-roading and discovering secluded and lightly traveled places. It’s such an amazing and beautiful escape that I never get on the frequently crowded beaches of Southern California.

Online or Print Magazines:
B: There is no substitution for flipping through a fresh magazine full of vibrant color.
K: Print magazines. I feel like I’m able to pay closer attention when I’m physically holding the magazine in my hands. I also feel a greater sense of accomplishment when I actually finish the magazine.

Open or Private Offices:
B: Open offices are much more collaborative and lively. Working alone is calming, but on a day to day basis I really enjoy working around other creative minds and being able to interact with others.
K: Open, because I enjoy working with my peers and value the importance of collaboration, especially with design projects.

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