First/Person: Born to Create with Malene Barnett

Cara Gibbs

17 February 2021


Listen in as our Creative Director chats with inspiring leaders from all industries as they discuss art, travel, design and everything in between.



Activist. Maker. Creative. Artist. Designer. Malene Barnett is many things, but perhaps most notably, she is an authenticity seeker and originality finder. She has spent a lifetime cultivating these qualities and actively employed them when founding the game-changing Black Artists + Designers Guild, whose debut textile collection with us (Dream Collaboration: Check!), Orejen, also reflects these sentiments. In preparation for the upcoming collection launch, Malene sat down with Jodi and chatted about all things fabric, inspiration and responsibility to the arts. ICYMI let’s listen in...

Joanna McClure, Two-Tone, S. Harris, Jodi Finer, S. Harris Instagram, Instagram Live




Design is… My life.

Art will always be… The center of my life.

Mantra… A project is never finished, it's just due.

Never without… sweets!

Turquoise is the new… Backdrop color

I'm a firm believer in… Speaking your truth



"At BADG, we put people first. We honor our ancestors, culture and makers. It’s the people behind the artistry and cultural traditions who keep us grounded and inspired. It was important for us to take the same approach in creating a product collection paying tribute to all of the sources that inspire our creative practices. We want the design community to follow our lead, re-think how to share origin stories, and be responsible by leading with acknowledgement to the people, cultures and artistry, without taking ownership away from the source."







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Cara Gibbs

Cara is a freelance design and lifestyle writer, editor, and stylist residing in Manhattan. Formerly the principal style editor at Luxe Interiors + Design, she now is a regular contributor to Architectural Digest, House Beautiful, Wallpaper, and The Wall Street Journal, among other publications. She is also the co-founder of the artisan marketplace, In The Pursuit, a platform that marries content with commerce through a lifestyle lens.

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