People’s Liberty is striving to provoke change. We believe that investing in Cincinnati means investing in our city's local talent i.e. exceptional individuals with exceptional ideas. In our renovation of the Globe Building, we’ve made a concerted effort to enlist help from several individuals throughout the region.
We've hired a number of local artists, vendors, and design teams to help us renovate the Globe Building—our future home—into a place that inspires and supports creative ideas and initiatives. In an effort to capture this transformation and the talented people behind it, we’ll be profiling one partner every week. Stay tuned as we showcase the myriad of local talent our small city holds.
Rosie Kovacs, Brush Factory
This week, we chatted with Rosie Kovacs of Brush Factory, a multi-disciplinary industrial design studio located a few blocks north of the OTR district. We’re more than excited to have Rosie, and her partner, Hayes, dreaming up all of the Globe’s interior design, as well as creating its custom—primarily mobile—office furniture.
PL: How did you end up in Cincinnati?
RK: I studied fashion at DAAP, and Hayes industrial design. Through the co-op program we both worked in big cities, like San Francisco and NY, but decided to make our home base Cincinnati.
PL: Why/how did you end up transitioning from fashion into industrial design?
RK: After I graduated in '09, Hayes and I opened a few boutiques (in Brighton & Oakley), making one-off pieces. We did everything from clothing, to accessories, to custom furniture pieces. We were really all over the place in terms of what we were producing. In the middle of the recession, we streamlined our product line and put everything online. This is when we decided to get into home goods only, and out of fashion. Since then, we’ve been bootstrapping and trying to grow our business very organically.
PL: How has that transition been?
RK: The transition into new roles [for both Hayes and I] has taken some time. Because we're now focusing on furniture, I have taken on more of an operations role to help grow the business. We both still design, but Hayes and his father are the technical experts who make the actual pieces. I am excited though, because I still think my background in fashion will be a huge benefit for us as a company. Fashion is the leading industry for trends, whereas furniture design is definitely lagging behind in that area. Having an eye for trend already, and applying that to the interiors market puts [us] in a good spot. I like to think of my fashion degree as just a springboard into something bigger.
PL: Can you talk about the opportunity you see in Cincinnati, or about the opportunities it has already provided you?
RK: [Cincinnati] is never going to be New York, even if people want it to be. However, people are constantly trying to shape this city into the place they want it to be, so it feels like a big city in that way, with all the change and events going on. But it’s still small enough to maintain that real sense of community. Because of that, there’s never missed opportunity. Someone always knows someone you want to know. It’s really easy to be plugged into the growing entrepreneurial and renaissance scene.
PL: Can you talk a little bit about the work you are doing for the Globe?
RK: We are choosing the vibe of the Globe. So anything that can be moved in and out, that’s us. Most everything is mobile and adaptable so they can be rearranged as People’s Liberty grows and changes. It’s contemporary, yet authentic because of the nature of the natural materials we're using. We are striving for elegantly simple to create a place people want to come and be productive.
PL: What’s your favorite piece Brush Factory is working on for the Globe?
RK: The kitchen island...but we are trying to keep it a secret; we want it to be a surprise. But I can say that there will be a pop or two of color in the space…and a couple of neon signs, too!