People 11 May 2017
You may not know 25-year-old Jerri Hobdy by name, and we'd wager that you probably wouldn't be able to recognize her face in a crowd, either. We'll tell you one thing you're probably familiar with, though: her furniture. In March 2015, shortly after graduating from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Hobdy landed a position at Anthropologie as an in-house designer specializing in furniture, upholstery and lighting.
To say her pieces have been wildly successful would be putting it mildly. Hobdy's Elowen Chair – which features a plush velvet seat and elegant, polished brass legs – became an overnight success once it hit stores. Since its debut, it's sold over $1 million in volume, and has earned the title of Anthropologie's leading item in the Home category. Hobdy is also responsible for their whimsical Bumblebee End Table, handsome Metallic Mosaic Coffee Table, and stunning Geo Brass Inlay Bed, among many other pieces.
“I have always been a hands-on creative," Hobdy told SWAAY. “Bringing ideas to life, whether it be drawing or actually building furniture, I have found to be a hugely satisfying outlet for myself. When I discovered that I could earn a degree – and more importantly, make a living – as a furniture designer, I pursued it fully and am loving it!"
Hobdy begins her morning with a pour over of Rival Brothers Coffee (her fave), and then walks her seven-pound Pomeranian Dixon. Then it's off to Anthropologie, where she busies herself sketching, styling, and photographing.
“Every day, I learn new ways to channel my creativity and excitement about furniture and home decor design into sketches, digital renders, and technical drawings that eventually come to life," she says. “There is always a scribble filled stack of papers and a spattering of fabric swatches and eraser bits on my desk."
Hobdy describes her aesthetic as “rooted in simplified silhouettes, fine and layered textures, and pure finishes that showcase materiality." She is also passionate about utilizing more sustainable practices in furniture making and manufacturing, which goes hand-in-hand with her pure, refined aesthetic. She is one of only a couple hundred Green Accredited Professionals who currently live in the United States, and she was the 2015 Cradle2Cradle Professional Design Challenge winner, where she incorporated solvent-free, vegetable-tanned leather and steel into her winning design.
Despite her age, which can be a hindrance in any professional field, Hobdy has found success in furniture and design by being both true to herself and tuned in to the brands she's designing for.
At this point in Hobody's career, her mission is to focus on channeling a brand's language and the consumer's needs. But she has every intention of building her own brand and fully exploring, and showcasing, her personal aesthetic.
As a young, twenty something who's already found success in the furniture design field, Hobdy offers these words of wisdom to others just getting started:
“Don't be afraid to stop and give yourself time to really analyze what you love, what you desire to change or impact, and what your skills are," she says. “Identifying those clearly, and then searching for and building strategies on how to merge them, is the most rewarding and motivating self-actualization. Each of us has unique abilities, and even if they don't fall into traditional or clear-cut career routes, stick with your guns and carve out your own space."
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Help! My Friend Is a No Show
Dear Armchair Psychologist,
I have a friend who doesn't reply to my messages about meeting for dinner, etc. Although, last week I ran into her at a local restaurant of mine, it has always been awkward to be friends with her. Should I continue our friendship or discontinue it? We've been friends for a total four years and nothing has changed. I don't feel as comfortable with her as my other close friends, and I don't think I'll ever be able to reach that comfort zone in pure friendship.
Dear Sadsies,I am sorry to hear you've been neglected by your friend. You may already have the answer to your question, since you're evaluating the non-existing bond between yourself and your friend. However, I'll gladly affirm to you that a friendship that isn't reciprocated is not a good friendship.
I have had a similar situation with a friend whom I'd grown up with but who was also consistently a very negative person, a true Debby Downer. One day, I just had enough of her criticism and vitriol. I stopped making excuses for her and dumped her. It was a great decision and I haven't looked back. With that in mind, it could be possible that something has changed in your friend's life, but it's insignificant if she isn't responding to you. It's time to dump her and spend your energy where it's appreciated. Don't dwell on this friend. History is not enough to create a lasting bond, it only means just that—you and your friend have history—so let her be history!
- The Armchair Psychologist