Cool Friends: Ester Kislin
Meet Ester, founder & creative director of Park Slope, Brooklyn design studio and store: Sounds.
How did Sounds begin?
I dreamt of Sounds during the first trimester of my pregnancy. Although I was feeling creative, I couldn't continue my studio practice as a painter and ceramicist because I was working with toxic materials. My sudden change in circumstance led to a turn in a different direction. I called on some of my childhood dreams -the ones that felt more pure- less affected by my education and experiences in the art world. I wanted to turn my focus on others rather than just myself. My goal was to create a beautiful, ethical and sustainable world for the new person in my life, a world filled with accessible and functional art.
We opened the store and cafe in 2018 right before Paulie was born and later opened the product development office in Autumn of 2019. It was important for me that we create and not just sell products. The most important aspect of our brand is that we stick to our core values, whether with buying, supporting other brands or creating our own objects.
What's your favorite part about the New York creative community?
New York is amazing because you can find anything here. There is an endless supply of creative, inspiring and hardworking people. The city and its inhabitants persevere.
My favorite part about working with New Yorkers is how open and excited everyone is. With small scale personal projects the 'Jaded New Yorker' mentality melts away. There's less ego involved around the creation of functional handmade objects. These items are designed for the consumer, the maker and the world, not just a select few. I love that the community around Sounds plays a large part in what we carry and make. We are always listening to our patrons' feedback and recommendations, tailoring our products to the communities needs.
What's inspiring you right now?
I'm inspired by makers who are taking strong social, ethical and ecological stands. It's really easy to get something made but unfortunately making things sustainably or ethically is very challenging. I deeply value the hard work and endurance it takes to make something the right way.
Nature brings me constant light and energy, Paulie inspires me to keep moving forward everyday.
@shopsounds on Instagram