When I first discovered, Evan of Kern + Hyde, I knew this store was going to be different. As someone who pairs an Americana aesthetic within a curated retail gallery, the space has a strong value for design and giving back to the community. When I first walked into the shop, it reminded me of the curated urban spaces I have come to love. Full of natural light, beautiful items, and a story behind every piece within the space.
Keep on reading for my full interview with Evan.
I guess it began at my earliest, the first thing I ever drew and proud of was my dad’s motorcycle. Which was weird I wasn’t into motorcycles then, and now I’ve built them the last couple months. I mean for me creating was always an outlet. I was never really good at school. I always had trouble concentrating. But I always loved art, creating, and everything about it. I guess it just started at a young age. I don’t really know what sparked my interest in it. My dad was a pretty good artist and my mom drew, but we never really sat down as a family and did it together. I wanted this connection with my dad. Everything he did or found interest in, I really wanted to do. I remember him drawing horses, and me wanting to draw a horse too. Stuff like that. I guess it started with that really. Wanting to impress my parents really. It’s weird, but I guess that’s where it started.
I knew that I didn’t want to work for somebody else and I’ve known that for a long time. I’ve worked retail, was a manager for a retail store, and it’s not my thing. I like being in charge. I have a hard time delegating and like being in control. Art is something I can control and design. Making things and crafting things is something I can do all by myself and not have someone tell me what’s right or what’s wrong. Life gets crazy sometimes and it’s the only thing I can do by myself and be in complete control of . That’s what led me to start this I guess.
I loved every aspect of building it, the hype on it, marketing it, everything I’ve done in here is a complete representation of who I am, what I like to, and I think this space represents me pretty well.
I really didn’t feel like I was taking that big of a risk because I’ve been doing it. I was designing out of my house and had been doing freelance for a long time. I kind of felt like either way, I needed a place to go and to create. By me making a place, yeah I was paying a little more out of pocket monthly, but I wasn’t really taking a huge risk because I do a lot of design as well. I guess it’s a risk on the business end, but I don’t really think like that. It’s a place for me to come. It’s a place for me to escape and just evolve as a designer and an artist.
I think the brand Kern + Hyde at the moment is just me and highlighting what I would really like to do. But I would like to expand it as far as moving into apparel. I really like working with other companies. I think Kern + Hyde is something I can hide behind and not have to use my own name. It’s something that I feel it’s safer to be like, “Hi I’m Evan, with Kern+Hyde, I’d love to work with your company and have a collaboration.” It feels right. I would really like to expand on the apparel level.
I’d like to do more downtown growth. I’d like to have more downtown events. I want to be able to have an espresso machine in here and be able to have people who are creatives, something that I can’t do, but appreciate, a craft. It’d be nice to eventually expand and have a creative space, which was my initial thought, but unfortunately there wasn’t enough funding to make that happen. I’ve found a creative community and even friends that I’ve had and have gotten close to over the past couple of months just because of the space. I have some friends that I know and I’ve given them space to work. All they have to do is show up and come in and do what they will. I just want to be able to keep downtown alive and positive. Keep people that don’t have access to things and give them access to things, the stuff that I have.
Never give up. That’s the driving force behind everything I do. I don’t know if everyone goes through this but there are times in my work where I go through questions. Am I doing the right thing? Is this something I really want to do? It’s just doubt though. You just have to kindof move past that. I guess my advice is to never give up. Ever.
Kern + Hyde is a design agency and finely curated retail gallery. Located at 1327 Tehama Street, Redding, CA. Open 11-6, Monday-Saturday. Follow Kern + Hyde on Instagram and head to their day-long event The Great Exploration on Friday August 14th.