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Goods: Making a house a home

By Karen Diepeveen on June 4, 2014

If you’ve stopped by the West Wellington location of Victoire in the past few months, you may have noticed a special section lining the back wall. Filled with preserves, wool blankets, quaint dishes and art, these shelves make up Goods, the store-within-a-store.

Jessica Wilson, owner and curator of Goods, launched this project in the fall of 2013 and it has been growing steadily since. Featuring lots of locally and Canadian made items, you’ll also find treasures from around the world that Jessica has stumbled upon in her many hours spent curating the products. We sent Jessica a few questions to find out more about Goods, her inspiration, and what this little shop has in store.

Apartment613: Congrats on launching Goods! Let’s start with you telling us all about it. Where did the inspiration for Goods come from?

Jessica: Growing up, I spent a lot of time going to craft shows with my parents and seeing my Dad make things himself when he couldn’t find what he was looking for in a store, or if he thought the process would be interesting (hanging pot racks, a greenhouse, even paper maché birds), so I developed an appreciation for handmade goods when I was pretty young. When I met my partner, he introduced me to a whole new world of mid-century design and I fell in love with how much thought and care went into the design, materials and quality. What inspired me to start Goods was the combination of these two interests – hand crafted, slowly made goods and carefully thought out design. Someone like Nina Marchewka, whose pottery I carry is a perfect example of this. She’s been making pottery since she was 11 years old and it seems like she knows absolutely everything about the materials and processes and the result is a very deliberate design with really unique form. Makers like her are what inspired Goods.

What made you decide to go with a store within a store concept?

A few years back I had daydreams about starting a kitchen and home goods store. I thought maybe there would be textiles, furniture, coffee and preserves. I got really excited about the idea but when seriously facing the reality of owning a business, it got very intimidating. It felt high risk with my daughter just being born and moving into a new house, so I dropped it as a realistic venture and just continued to daydream and chat about it. I spoke with my friend Katie Frappier from Victoire quite a bit about it. She was encouraging of any business ideas I had and after several conversations she convinced me I could do it! In the summer of 2013 she suggested I rent out a small space in Victoire and curate a section there. It was the perfect solution. I wasn’t in a position to open a shop, but having a “store-in-a-store” and work closely with my pals sounded like a great opportunity. So after all, I was able to start placing orders and turn my daydream into something more within Victoire.

What can people expect to find when they check out the Goods products?

Goods is primarily made up of small Canadian designers and artists with a selection of international companies such as Kaico and Ferme. Anything that makes its way into the store is special, whether it’s local talent like N-product or wool blankets from Prince Edward Island, it’s here because it is interesting,  unique, and can really make a house a home.

There are so many great products out there. How do you curate what is added to the Goods lineup?

There are a lot of great products out there and I’m still learning how to curate a cohesive collection of everything. At this point I am choosing things I personally like and would buy for my home. I’m not saying everything is my personal aesthetic, but whatever product I bring in the store is something or by someone I believe in, and each product has a story. I believe in well-made and carefully designed products so hopefully it translates to other home-owners. Fingers crossed!

Anything else we should know about Goods?

It’s truly a labor of love. I am passionate about supporting local artists and well-made goods. I want the customer to connect with the products and adopt them happily into their home. Each item is hand selected, so I feel like everything is really special in its own way. We are hoping to have many more events in the future showcasing some local talent and some collaborative limited edition items. So keep your eyes and ears peeled.

Goods will be at a Maker’s Market hosted by Shopify (35 George Street) on Friday June 6 and Saturday June 7, and at Nuovo Domocile on Preston Street Saturday June 14.

website: www.shopgoods.ca
facebook: facebook.com/GoodsOttawa
instagram: _goods_
e-mail: jess@shopgoods.ca

Photo of Top Shelf Preserves by Elliot Strikefoot and Alli Asudeh.

Photo of Top Shelf Preserves by Elliot Strikefoot and Alli Asudeh.