Get to Know Stuart Brown of måuudhi
Måuudhi (@mauudhi) is a contemporary lifestyle avenue aimed to entertain, inform & inspire. Based in the UK, their curation and collection of modern, clean design ranging from furniture, home and fashion accessories and interiors are quickly pushing them deeper into the lifestyle realm to become an all-inclusive source for lovers and patrons of the popular movement. This Fall, Mauudhi will be rolling out a new magazine featuring clean lifestyle accessories and design. Before the release, Ello interviewed Stuart of Mauudhi to discuss the collective, the lifestyle aesthetic, and plans for the future.
Interviewer Mayah Taylor (@mayah) is Ello’s Giveaways Manager and Community Specialist. She loves tacos, fashion, Doctor Who and wears too much black.
How did Mauudhi start and who or what inspired its name?
I have always had a passion for design and items that are well designed. So, when I started out I wanted to create an inspirational platform where people can go to get inspired when designing their own clothing, furniture, print or an array of other products. I wanted it to be somewhere that focused purely on the textures, the quality, and cleanliness rather than things that were in your face or the complete opposite and just black and white like many minimalist blogs or magazines. I started off by posting an inspirational feed just as a hobby on Instagram and after seeing a fast rise in our fan base, I decided that I wanted to turn my passion into a business so that not only do I inspire others I can do something every day that I enjoy.
When coming up with the name for the brand I wanted to create a new word, a word without meaning so the brand could create its own meaning. My biggest inspirations come from Scandinavian and Japanese design so I wanted to create a word that felt like a blend between the two.
Lifestyle is a pretty big entity in the world of social media and creatives. How would you describe Mauudhi’s voice alongside other Lifestyle bloggers, magazines, and designers?
From the beginning, I have wanted Mauudhi to be an entity in itself. My aim is to bring all aspects of lifestyle together and have them under one roof. Whether that be food, music or even everyday life such as the clothes you wear. Our goal is to link up with as many like-minded people as possible, not only to learn myself but to help inspire a wider audience from different aspects, that being social media, products or the magazine. We appreciate the minimal aesthetic that many other lifestyle brands portray and have found inspiration from this but realize we have to offer more and that is what we are going to do.
One thing I noticed immediately upon Mauudhi joining Ello is your photography and beautiful imagery of accessories and design. What drives your minimalist aesthetic?
We try to make sure that the images and products that we share flow in a way that is easy to follow, works well but above all shows variety which is vital. We explore hundreds of different design studios, brands and other blogs alike to find products that not only suit our aesthetic but that really encapsulates our belief that quality is key. We tend to use the brands' photography giving it a professional look and feel but also to show the product as the brand want it seen. In the future, we will expand to taking our own photographs, but for now, this is what works best for both us and the brands. The aesthetic we choose comes from the idea of minimalism portraying products at their finest. I personally feel that a product placed upon a plain background shows the product in its purest and helps the viewer's eye see the true quality and craftsmanship that has gone into the production of the product.
There are tons of designs and accessories out there now. How do you narrow down and choose what to feature? Who are some of your favorite designers and Creators?
This is probably one of the most difficult things we do, we don’t want to overshare what everyone has seen before, we aim to find unique products and design that still suits our aesthetic. We love to support smaller designers at the same time as celebrating the works created by the more well known ones. I’m a huge fan of handvaerk and the way they manage to portray both the minimal cleanliness but quality at the same time. I also find the understated design of Norm Architects very inspiring, the way the combine textures with clean, crisp cut pieces is very appealing on the eye. I love brand identities by Savvy Studio and websites like Kinfolk’s by Six. The look isn’t the only thing that draws me in but also the functionality that these brands produce.
In my downtime when I post things on Ello or other social, I often find myself curating artwork and photography with similar color palettes or textures so there is a clear story being told of what’s inspiring me at that moment. How do you curate your content?
We tend to get a stockpile of content and then post it in and order that works aesthetically whether that be through similar photography styles, colour schemes or lighting. I like our social media to be a pleasant experience for the viewer and believe that their enjoyment and engagement is key. I do tend to take it upon myself to post what really inspires me. There is some design just too good not to share! I use Ello as a sort of mood board which I can look back on as a whole as the whole concept of bringing such different designs together is what prompts innovation and inspiration.
The designs you curate and feature are often beautiful, yet extremely functional, with a clear aesthetic and quality of design. What do you consider to be art and how would you describe these designs as art? (This question is a biggie, I know)
Throughout history, the argument about what can be classed as art and what can’t has been a long, ongoing one. My personal perspective on this is that art is all around us, from that picture on the wall, the shoes on your feet and even the streetlight stood outside your home. Every manmade item we see on a day to day basis has been intricately designed from its early stages right through to its end, in the exact way an artist would paint their image bit by bit to make their final product that you see hung on the wall in places such as the Louvre or the streets of London.
The design’s we share are art because they have meaning and a purpose. Just like the purpose of a painting is to feel the emotions the artist felt while painting it and thinking deeply about what was going on in their mind. It is the exact same story with products.
The definition of art is ‘the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power.’
Everything we share has been produced via the mind of a creative being using their imagination to portray what they see as beauty. Each post we share touches on the viewer's emotions in some way, even if you see something that we post and think "ergh, that’s horrible" (hopefully you don’t!), it is still affecting your emotions in some way.
Often throughout history, there are designs that transcend time and become household staples as we appreciate both their beauty and function, like the forever famous Eames Lounge chair. What do you believe is the next big design that we will all soon be using in our homes and daily lives?
It’s always difficult to predict what will be the next big thing and it can be surprising what people adopt into their households and everyday lives. I feel that as humans we are always moving forward and wanting what's best for our future as a planet clearly shown by the rise of eco-friendly products and lifestyles. With cars soon to all become electric, I feel there will be some fantastic progression and exciting design going beyond what we knew was possible. For example, look at the Mclaren P1 which combines the use of an electric motor and a petroleum engine to fuel 903 Hybrid Horsepower, now that is just insane! Tesla is perfecting the self-driving car and brands like Volkswagen are now pushing cars like the Golf GTE to the public rather than their GTI models. I feel that this is the start of something amazing and cannot wait to see what comes next!
As an artist who loves great design, I’m very excited about the upcoming magazine release. What other plans does Mauudhi have for the future?
The magazine has been a fantastic experience and it is something we will definitely be doing again! Along the way I have met some truly extraordinary people, who are so talented and have really worked hard to make this project happen. I cannot wait to sit down with the rest of the team and get cracking on issue two!
Our plan over the next couple of years is to expand and improve on the magazine with every issue. Our new website launched last month, which features works from great up and coming brands plus some well-known ones. We would love to expand the collection and gradually become the best place to buy well-designed products on the internet. Our website also features a section where readers can go to get the latest articles on design, music, travel and more which will be written by some truly talented up and coming authors.
We will also be going into video so as well as being able to get your hands on the print issue, there will be unique content that you can stream straight from your phone, tablet or laptop whilst waiting for the next issue to go into stores.
We are currently working with award-winning product designer Saif Faisal to produce our very first product that we can stock alongside the other brands in our store. We think the world will be blown away by the concept!
We would also like to go into publishing 7 weekly podcasts (one for each day). If anyone is interested in podcasting for us, then it would be great to hear from you. The best email address to reach us on is firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally, I’d love to know about a piece of furniture or accessory that spiked the love and inspiration to get into Lifestyle. Do you have a specific artwork or design that you personally use or appreciate daily that you couldn’t live without?
Before I had an interest in product design I had a keen interest in graphic and web design which is where I initially caught the design bug. However there have been multiple products I have seen and used throughout life which have captured my interest from a design perspective, but if I had to put my finger on one accessory in particular, it would have to be the Instrmnt Watches. I’ve always like the packaging which showed such minimalism yet it was functional and interactive. The way in which you build the final stages of the watches yourself really makes you feel involved which is so important and truly sets the design apart from anything else. This alongside the crisp and simple look as well as the obvious quality of the product is what I believe to be incredible design.
You can follow måuudhi on Ello, Instagram, and YouTube.