The Home and Lifestyle Shop With a Modern Approach to California Living
Hayley Smith, Founder of H. SMITH
My name is Hayley Smith, and I live in the little beach town of Ventura, California with my husband Josh, 2 pups Annie and Eleanor, and we finally have a little baby on the way after a long journey of infertility! I was born and raised in Southern California and couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. I am constantly inspired by the colors and textures around me here, (i.e. the inspiration of my shops' branding) as well as the simplicity of the modern California lifestyle. I also love to travel (who doesn’t?), visit shops, and meet makers from around the world. I work in digital marketing by day and work on my passion project/side hustle of a business by night. I am so excited for the future of H. SMITH and cannot wait to see how it grows.
H. SMITH is a modern home and lifestyle online shop launched in 2018. I am proud to support small designers and makers who drive the marketplace to be better and who also believe in thoughtful, quality design. Our community has a deep-rooted appreciation for the creative process and sees the beauty in a modern approach to California living. The H. SMITH customer is quietly cool but embraces a relaxed, simple, and clean style.
My growing home selection includes handmade ceramics by Easy to Breathe and Notary Ceramics, pillows and blankets from Heather Taylor Home and Mexchic, loose leaf teas by Leaves & Flowers, beautiful art by Wilde House Paper and Ayse Sirin Budak, and hand-carved wooden cooking wares by Four Leaf Wood Shop to name a few. On the lifestyle side of the shop, I have a collection of Sophie Monet’s wooden earrings, incredible scents from Sonder Goods, bun pins by CA Makes, Baggu reusable bags, and more.
Before working in digital marketing, I spent 7 years as an account executive in the contemporary women's fashion space and worked in women’s retail before that. I was constantly inspired by incredible women-owned businesses, the creative process, and building and watching brands grow. I knew I would own my own shop one day, so I decided to just make it happen once I moved from LA and away from the fashion scene. I needed to stay in touch with my creative side, and starting H. SMITH has certainly fulfilled that.
My main focus and something that sets H. SMITH apart is the product and the experience. While I have social and political opinions, I don’t want that to be the way I connect with my customers. I want it to be a shared love and appreciation for beautiful product you can incorporate into your everyday made by some incredibly talented humans.
While some of my brands are well known to many, I love to bring in smaller brands that people discover for the first time in the shop. That is an experience in itself, but following the product with good photos, beautiful packaging, thoughtful hand-written notes in every shipment, elevated customer service, and attention to detail, it all comes together to create a memorable experience.
Being an online shop, shipping materials are necessary but can become very wasteful. Receiving so much product from my vendors, I think it is important to reuse the packaging I receive when shipping orders to my customers. It’s a small step, but I am always looking for ways to reduce waste.
Also, when deciding on what brands to bring into the shop, it is my moral responsibility to ensure that they are enforcing ethical and sustainable practices in the making of each product as much as I can. For instance, Mexchic creates beautiful woven textiles and turns them into stunning blankets and pillows for your home. The American designer set up shop in Oaxaca, Mexico to support the master artisans in the Mexican blanket-weaving tradition. The makers’ talented hands are well-treated, thanks to Mexchic’s commitment to the World Fair Trade Organization’s high standards of social and ecological responsibility. She uses 100% virgin earth-friendly wool in her designs as well.
Being intentional and aware of these practices is important and something I am mindful of at H. SMITH.