Spouses have been and still are designing together, and they’re doing it well.As early as the ’60s with the prominence of designers like Charles and Ray Eames, to today in the Chip and Joanna Gaines phenomena that was once the HGTV series “Fixer Upper” and has fabricated itself into a interior design collection at Target. Blending the romantic and creative, couples are redefining what it means to work in a team. Even high end brands like Tory Burch are making things a family affair, Burch naming her husband Pierre-Yves Roussel the chief executive of her company.
Why, you might ask, would people mix home life with work life? Or even choose to share something you’ve made with someone else? Coming from an artist’s perspective, I am not sure I could so willingly share my creative endeavors. Yet, when looking at such power couples, something clearly seems to be working. Ray and Charles Eames revolutionized the worlds of mid-century modern furniture, graphic and architectural design. And Tory Burch is a timeless, high quality brand in the world of fashion. These couples have shaped design so much so that other spouses are following suit, inviting their significant others to design alongside them.
When looking at the relationships of these creative pairs, it begins to make sense that one would want to work so closely with their spouse. While it is an extremely personal process, design is one that relies on the people around you to challenge and better your ideas. Why not choose someone who will be brutally honest with you or will listen to random creative discoveries that pop into your head at three in the morning? Designing is a lifestyle, so why not blend the personal and professional? When you have constant conversations, brainstorms and sketching, the outcome is almost always better designs and new discoveries. When including a spouse in the process of design, brands inherently become more family-oriented in the eyes of the consumer, creating a sense of comfort. Knowing that not one, but two individuals are constantly revising, bettering, thinking about the product they are creating, customers feel connected to the product they are buying, knowing the investment is one of true value.
While on the surface, Burch’s decision to elect her husband as CEO narrows her field of work within the company, what she is doing is showing herself as a true professional, willing to do what is best for her work and the world of design as a whole.