Introducing Guest Curator, Roxy Te!
Our SPACES show isn’t the only show going on Well + Wonder this week - a few of our artists are popping up virtually and in-person (and masked up!) at Society Social in Charlotte later this week. In honor of this very exciting pop-up we thought it best to talk to the mastermind herself, Roxy Te, and have her as the latest Guest Curator to grace our blog pages. From an early age, North Carolina native Roxy Te was no stranger to the world of furniture, having even lived in her family’s first furniture factory until she was 2. As a young adult, she spent her summers working in the office and fall and spring attending High Point Market. After graduating from Parsons the New School for Design and working a corporate job, Roxy decided to honor her history and to start a business of her own. Inspired by her family’s story, and empowered by her corporate training, she returned to her roots. In August of 2011, Roxy took to e-commerce and proudly launched her very own furniture line, Society Social. The rest, as they say, is history. We are beyond thrilled to have this furniture and design maven Roxy as our latest Guest Curator and even more excited (if you can believe it) to bring some of our Well + Wonder artwork to her dreamy storefront later this week. Until then, get to know Roxy by reading her responses to our rapid-fire Q&A and please help us welcome her as Well + Wonder's latest Guest Curator!
"What You Hear the Wind Say" by Eleanor-Scott Davis: I originally came across this piece on Eleanor-Scott Davis’s Instagram page. Not only is she a lovely customer of ours, but I particularly love watching how she works with color and creates vignettes of her work in her own home. This piece was featured on her Instagram over a gorgeous vintage chest with books, vases, and ginger jars that we actually carry at our flagship store! Clearly we’re on the same wavelength!
"Night V" by Melvin G: The playful yet powerful nature of Melvin G.’s pieces have drawn me in since I first stumbled upon her account on Instagram. Finding artists on Instagram seems to be a theme with me! I love how her hand-painted collages showcase women with boldness and vibrance! I can see this work living in my daughter’s bedroom!
"Dune Runners" by Susie Bettenhausen: The beach holds a special place in my family’s heart. It’s the place where I fell in love with my husband and somewhere that my daughter asks me to visit every morning when she wakes up. It’s a place that we can relax and give our minds a rest! Looking at this piece every day would remind me to take a minute to feel the way I feel when I’m with my family in the sun with the sand beneath my toes!
Tell us about yourself. Hi guys! I’m Roxy Te, founder and creative director of Society Social. We’re known for designing and making furniture with a fun and playful spirit. I’m also a host for a new show on the ABC Localish network, Secretly Awesome, that spotlights small business, at a time when we couldn't need it more! Our mission is personal to me and I couldn’t be more honored. I hope you tune in as we find and celebrate companies, products, and experiences that are Secretly Awesome! Most importantly I’m a wife and a mother to our sweet girl, Austen Kelly.
Why did you start your blog/brand/business? I started Society Social back in 2011 right in the middle of the recession. I had just graduated from Parsons School of Design in New York and was starting to build a life with my husband. I quickly realized that all of the furniture items that I adored and desired for my home were either out of my budget or only accessible to me through a designer. I wanted the tassel-trimmed sofa and tape trimmed chair and all of the colorful pillows! Having been raised in a furniture factory I asked myself, why don’t I create the look I was after at an accessible price point for all! Long story short--Society Social was created with me as the test market. I’m sure glad there are others out there who felt the same way!
What is currently on your nightstand? What are you reading?Instead of reading at night, I’ve been meditating! Between owning a small business, parenting, and general pandemic stress, meditation has been a new and wonderful tool that I’ve been using to help manage stress and anxiety. I love the Calm app!
What is your favorite room in your house? Describe it. Easy answer- our back covered porch! After leaving NYC at the end of 2018, I immediately started planning my family’s forever home. With the weather in North Carolina being so “comfortable” so many months of the year, we knew we wanted to take advantage of the great outdoors. Our current set up consists of a fireplace for cozying up, our latest Society Social Nantucket Rattan Collection upholstered in a powdery blue outdoor fabric, in true Southern style an airy blue ceiling to bring good luck and ward away evil spirits, and all of my daughter, Austen’s, toys. It has truly served as our second living room!
What is your biggest score online to date?I love incorporating vintage or antique items into a home and my 1970s burlwood game table from Chairish has proudly been a part of our NYC apartment and now our NC home.
It is said to look for art that "makes your heart skip a beat." What aspects of art make your heart skip?A piece that can spark a memory. That can be a color palette, a scene, or even a photograph.
What is the benefit of buying art through a collective?You can trust the curation which takes the guesswork out of art collecting!
If you have the entire day to spend in an art museum, which one and why?Musee D’Orsay in magical Paris on the left bank of the Seine! I minored in French and studied abroad so I have a special place in my heart for French artists. I love Musee D’Orsay for all the reasons! 1) It’s smaller than the Louvre and houses a more edited collection of art, sculptures, and photography. Touring the Louvre felt frantic and overwhelming at times but Musee D’Orsay was perfect for a leisurely and slow stroll. 2) Musee D’Orsay is known for housing some of the greatest works from the Impressionist era which might be my favorite art movement. I love how artists like Degas, Renoir, Monet, and Manet, Van Gogh... capture life through a romantic lens and the ever-changing qualities of light. 3) The museum’s architecture alone is a work of art!
When and where do you get the biggest surge of inspiration? I find inspiration all around me. Having lived in New York City for so many years, I continually am drawn to its vibrance and am always at my most inspired state when walking through Washington Square Park or the streets of SOHO. Obviously travel has been more of a challenge here lately and I have been turning to Instagram, design books (oh how I love a good design book), and last, but not least, my daughter, Austen! She was the inspiration behind our best selling Austen Chair!
The key to making a house a home? What does a home need more of and less of? The key to making a house a home are items that bring you and your family joy. From family photographs to gorgeous works of art collected over the years. A house turns into a home when you can tell that it is lived in and full of love. A love of family and love of your life--past, present, and future!
The greatest color combination that ever existed? Hands down, French Blue and white. We say all the time that French Blue is the new Millennial Pink and boy do I believe it. And can we all agree blue is the new American neutral? To us, it’s a much more exciting neutral than beige! The shutters of our forever home don this lovely hue along with our giant pagoda bar which is the focal point of our flagship in Charlotte, NC. We even created our own Signature color of the infamous Les Touches fabric by Brunschwig & Fils that’s just the perfect shade of French Blue!
What’s your favorite housewarming gift? It’s basic but you can never go wrong with a bottle of wine at our house! I like to stock up on Society Social Charlotte Corksafes, too. The pair makes a quick and easy hostess gift for almost any occasion.
Tell us a bit about your corner of the world – where do you live and what do you love about it? After leaving New York, my husband, daughter and I returned back to my hometown of Hickory, NC. We’re only 5 minutes from our factory and have all the space in the world to spread our wings! Not to mention, we’re so much closer to our family and many of our wonderful friends!