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Cabinet of Modern Curiosity: Suite Hazen Interview

Monday, 9 February 2015

Curiosity-evoking, boundless discoveries and uniquely beautiful, Suite Hazen founder Lauren Walker warmly welcomes you to take a virtual exploration of her personal place that houses all of her favourite things, from the eclectic mix of desirable jewellery, niche brands and small luxuries. Source of inspirations comes from her exotic travels and fabulous hotel boutiques around the world, where they house unusual yet intriguing objects. Convinced that there are others out there with the same innate curiosity of self expression and individuality, Lauren created this cabinet of modern curiosities in a contemporary space. Intrigued, I sought to find out more.

  1. What is Suite Hazen in a nutshell?
In a nutshell Suite Hazen is a lifestyle gifting suite and was inspired by a love of boutique hotels.  Specialising in uniquely beautiful accessories, apothecary items and other curiosities. All very easily gift-able items perfect for gifting to a loved one or self-gifting and treating yourself! And jewellery is always a welcome gift! It’s about discovering something new and there is also a magazine portion that helps further that idea of discovery through editorial that features great interior and inspiring creative.  That helps to bring the shop and it’s virtual walls to life.

  1. What inspired you to come up with the idea in the first place? Who and what influenced you?
The first seed was actually gifting hotels suites found in Hollywood during award season and that coupled with travel and a love of boutique hotels added to the concept. Finally it was about discovering lovely little luxuries along the way i.e jewellery, artisan fragrance. All niche and independent brands and artisanal designers with pieces that have a great story, with a small notion of it feeling like cabinet of modern day curiosities to discover.

I was really also influenced by the idea of stocking and championing evergreen type products not trend lead or seasonal, ones that have that timeless quality. 


3. What is your background career wise? Did it help with setting up Suite Hazen? 

 My background is communications in the fashion industry that included editorial and PR. I used to work in both NYC and London so there were lots of exciting work and life experiences that contributed to where I am today with Suite Hazen.

4. How important is social media to Suite Hazen? How do you utilise it to effectively communicate with your followers? What is your favourite platform and why? 

 Social media is key to presenting your own brand story and speaking directly to the audience. The power of social media is incredible and that coupled with traditional PR is a great recipe we have today. Instagram would be my top platform, I love it for the discovery of other inspiring topics but since I’m in the business of imagery it’s a key channel for us and extra photos that don’t make it on the site can be used on social. But you need to participate in all of them and we have targets we try to hit across FB, Pinterest and Twitter too. All with slightly different goals. 




5. The designers on your website is a versatile mix. How do you select them to keep up with your theme and concept? 

 They are an eclectic mix I must say but they do all makes sense (to me!) they have the common vein of being uniquely beautiful though each with a different complimenting aesthetic.  

6. Does your website layout reflect your personality or the designers you chose?  
Yes it totally does, my goal was for it to not look like the e-commerce designs we have grown to know but add a bit more to the feel than just a catalogue looking e-boutique. The photography with the lifestyle shots and scene scapes are a bit of our calling card. I’m not very conventional so didn’t want conventional product shots and the brands are totally supportive. So we all like to thank our photographer Mike Gannon when we can!



7. What is the most challenging aspect of setting up your own business? And the most fulfilling?  

The most challenging is carrying 100% all responsibility because it is your own but then when customers express their enthusiasm for being turned onto something new that is the best.

8. Do you have a favourite designer/s or piece/s on the website? What stood out for you? 

 I love everything naturally but because you asked this week (because it always changes) I love the wittiness of Alpha Beta’s “Unchain My Art” necklace, Lauren Wolf’s Pearl everything, the rose gold and quartz necklace by Rittuals and the ear cuff by Kadletz.



9. What are your future plans for Suite Hazen? 

 Keep introducing it to other lovers of beautiful things and grow the categories. A pop up shop within a great boutique hotel is in the plan for 2015 so we will see if universe agrees. Plus change the world one gift at a time!

10. Describe Suite Hazen in 3 words.
 Small Luxuries - Lifestyle – Discovery 

 www.suitehazen.com

Also check out her brilliant In Suite Magazine.



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