Studio Tour

Studio Tour: Quiet Town Home

by Sabrina Smelko

I discovered Quiet Town Home the old fashioned way: through a tried and true Google search. I had just decided to see my dream of a pink bathroom through, and I knew that whatever shower curtain I landed on could very well dictate the rest of the space, just like a great sofa or rug can inspire an entire living room. After searching for results with the term “pink organic cotton shower curtain,” I stumbled on a link for their Narlai Sunset shower curtain — the piece that ultimately inspired the design of my entire bathroom.

Despite the name, Quiet Town Home co-founders Michael and Lisa live in the not-so-quiet neighborhood of Carroll Gardens in Brooklyn, NY with their two children, Indigo and Sunny. Ambivalence and a desire to do good is what inspired Lisa and Michael Fine to start Quiet Town Home in early 2016. Tired of buying things they needed, but didn’t love, they set out to bring beauty and ethics to the utilitarian world of bathroom accessories and necessities, reinventing the things you typically throw into your shopping cart with a shrug. “We launched Quiet Town because we couldn’t find anything we liked for our bathroom,” Lisa explains. “As a renter in a city famous for small dwellings, you never really get GREAT bathrooms, so having the right accessories makes a huge difference. We figured if we were feeling at a loss, then other people must be too.”

And just as quickly as the thought came to them, so too did their workshop come together. A fashion and lifestyle photographer, Michael already had a great photo studio with high ceilings and tons of natural light — and as a new company, it simply made sense to stay lean and launch Quiet Town Home from there. In just 350 square feet, they managed to fit in a showroom, fulfillment center, and office — and they put it all together in just one day. “We had a store coming — our first showroom visit — and we had to transform the space the day after we got back from vacation. It was kid of hilarious!” Lisa admits. “We had been putting the pieces of this business together for about five years; collecting inspiration, making samples, sketching — so all of the elements were there to really make the space look authentically used. And of course, the product fills it with color and texture which helped a lot.”

Located right on the Gowanus Canal, their studio/workspace is just a few blocks away from their home, and smack in-between is their kids’ school, so life for the Fines is pretty neatly tied up in this area. However, it was important to Michael and Lisa to branch out with Quiet Town Home in order to source the most ethical and organic materials. With transparency and high design at the heart of all they do, their organic fabrics are sourced from India, small-batch dyed in Los Angeles, and finally, sewed together in Brooklyn.

Although the company is fairly young, Lisa and Michael have hit the ground running and it’s simply a matter of time before they’re forced to find a dedicated studio. But for now, their scrappy setup is perfect for their family and their needs. –Sabrina

Photography by Michael Fine

This is the "showroom" side of the Quiet Town Home studio. On the opposite wall is the office, "dedicated to inventory and very messy desks," Lisa jokes.
The heart of the workshop is concentrated in this little corner behind Lisa and Michael. "The shower curtains on the wall behind us really say what Quiet Town is," Lisa says.
"I hand carried that boucherouite rug (and four others) on the plane home from Morrocco," Lisa says, "It was annoying as hell, but worth it."
This photo shows their fall 2016 shower curtain and bath rug collection, which they launched in September.
"We love color and texture and believe, no matter what time of year it is, it should always feel like summer!" Lisa explains.
The table behind Lisa is from her grandmother's house in Miami, where she's from. "She'd be really happy to know we're using it," Lisa shares. "I have to send her this picture!"
Lisa and Michael love mixing natural hues and materials with bright colors, which is exactly why organic canvas is such a huge part of their brand identity.
Quiet Town Home's USA-made Acadia "S" hooks in stainless steel. They also have some available in brass.
"As a stylist and a designer, I need imagery to set my eye and keep me on a tight visual path," Lisa reveals. "The spread at the center of the image is the cover of our new fall look book."
The Quiet Town Home mood board actually spans an entire wall that morphs and changes with each season.
Michael and Lisa scored this little swan sofa at a J Crew prop sale. Above it hang some black and white photos Michael shot. "Michael just started a new personal project shooting really contrasty black and white images," Lisa explains. "He's his happiest when shooting nature."
Under the One Kings Lane white coffee table, you'll find one of their hand-woven kilim bath rugs. "How many bath rugs have you bought that you'd use in your living room? None, right?" Lisa asks rhetorically.
Quiet Town Home's hand-stamped hangtags.

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