Home Decor with Reflektion Design: A Talk with Anitra Terrell
We couldn't be more excited to bring your our expansion into lifestyle and home decor! We got to catch up with owner of Reflektion Design - Anitra Terrell and talk Reflektion, Culture, the power of Social Media & Spring Cleaning tips!
How did the idea of Reflektion Design come about?
The concept behind Reflektion Design is twofold. In 2006, I spent five weeks in Ghana, West Africa as a Fulbright Scholar in partnership with the University of Cape Coast studying international marketing. When not working, you would find me in the market places taking in the sights, sounds and wares of the local artisans. The marketplace is where I felt inspired, alive and connected to the community. In addition to scholarship, I was also in Ghana as a textile buyer purchasing Kente Cloth for the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery’s permanent collection. This was a one of the best times of my life and career it planted the seed for what later would become Reflektion Design.
Fast forward to 2013, I was laid off from my job and found myself at a crossroads: hit the pavement in search of another job or create my own path. I chose the latter.
I knew I wanted to create a business model around textiles and culture but wasn’t sure of specifics until one day I went shopping for home décor specifically bedding and pillows. I found it difficult to find home accessories that resonated with me, the places I have traveled or the places I aspire to travel to. At that moment, I realized the direction I needed to go and it made perfect sense.
Did you always aspire to be in decor? I have always had an entrepreneurial spirit (started my first business making and selling letter pillows at age 13), but was equally interested in more traditional career paths. After years of nice but unfulfilling jobs, I did some soul-searching and decided to create a business that would allow me to share my love of home decor, culture and design influenced by my travels abroad. In a way, my hand was forced, because in a two-year time span I was laid-off from two different jobs. I took it as a sign that it was time to forge my own path.
How does your heritage influence your work today? Culture is the foundation of my brand. I believe incorporating ethnic décor into a space transforms it, it feels fully expressed and is a direct connection to cultural identity and awareness. My decision to use Ankara fabric (also known as African Dutch Wax fabric) as the foundation textile was intentional as well as incorporating Adinkra symbols into the company logo. I want customers to immediately identify with our brand and feel connected to it.
How would you describe your clients? The Reflektion Design customer is culturally inspired. Part refined, part vibrant and expressive, they make a statement in all areas of their life and want their home to make a statement as well. They love to entertain at home and are drawn to handmade items with cultural significance.
What are your thoughts on the power of social media for emerging and local brands? Social media plays a major role in connecting to your customers, telling your brand’s story and building professional connections in your industry. Several press opportunities I’ve received came from relationships fostered through social media. The key is being true to yourself, your brand and be genuine.
How do you stay true to your brand? I focus on the why. Why I got into business in the first place. Why I love African textiles and the transformative qualities they have to someone’s home and identity. Why it’s important for my customers to create a home as vibrant as they are allowing them to feel fully expressed.
What is one of your favorite pastimes when you’re not creating? Binge watching my favorite TV shows on the weekends. I rarely watch TV during the week so I consider it a treat for staying focused/incorporating other means of entertainment (reading, spending time with friends ect.). Travel (domestically and internationally) and trying new foods are also favorite pastimes.
What are your Spring cleaning/ redecorating tips? Purge, purge, purge! If it no longer serves you let it go. If it’s taking up too much space move it. If you haven’t worn it in months donate it. You’d be surprised how much better you feel when your home is less cluttered and your surrounded by the only the things that matter most to you.
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