Member Profile: Ash+Gin
Welcome to our Member Profile Series! While DressCode is at The Studio for the next three months, we thought we would take some time to highlight our creative members and the work they do from our studio. Our first interview is with Ashleigh Cochran of Ash + Gin, an interior designer with a strong needlepoint game…
Ashleigh, thanks for sharing your story with us. Can you tell us a bit about Ash + Gin and what inspired you to start your own business?
Ashleigh: Ash + Gin Creative is a textile fine art studio that brings uniquely designed and handcrafted art to the homes of customers who are seeking something different. The pieces A+G designs are inspired by places, nature, and little details most never even notice – like brick patterns on sidewalks, the sunset on a commute home, textures on old siding, etc. All these beautiful things are what inspire me to stitch. Primarily all of this action happens at home or on the road!
I created Ash + Gin after realizing I have a lot of ideas, finished canvases and lots of thread not going anywhere but a bin. I want to show the world that needlepoint can be fun, contemporary and isn't just a craft of the past your grandmother did.
I love that you do a modern take on needlepointing, which is something I usually associate with shall we say… more of a Jane Eyre time?
Ashleigh: Well, it developed out of necessity. Before needlepoint, I was painter (my first degree was in Studio Art, concentration in painting), but I couldn't take painting everywhere. My hands are never idle! At any given time needlepoints are with me. They travel well and pass the time in any situation.
A native to Virginia by way of Richmond I ended up in Alexandria to pursue a second degree in Interior Design. While in school I kept honing in on my craft of needlepoint with each spare moment and came up with a comprehensive collection as a result.
Your online shop is lovely - will you be unveiling more product in advance of the holidays?
Ashleigh: Thank you! And I will be. I have some cool new products in the works as we speak. Along with re-branding and website relaunch - it’s a big year for my little company!
You recently used The Studio for a private booking. Can you share the type of work you accomplished while you were here? Why did you decide to book The Studio for yourself?
Ashleigh: I needed a clean, cool, art studio space to take pictures of my needlepoints and artwork for my upcoming branding/website relaunch. And oh my goodness! I can't say enough how amazing the space is! It was perfect. I was on a serious time crunch (I wish I could have stayed all to work too). I was great to just unloaded all my work in a clean cool space, get organized and start shooting. It also definitely inspired me for pop-up ideas.
Oh awesome! Any plans to participate in shows or pop-ups in the next few months?
Ashleigh: I'm hoping to have a pop-up sometime in the spring with another business. For now, it's just me and puppy Nugget running the world of Ash +GIn with aspirations of growth coming around the corner so popping up with another creative would be a great way to make a pop-up concept more manageable.
Ashleigh’s Five Favorites:
1) Favorite neighborhood in Alexandria and why?
Old Town! It's where I live, work and play.
2) Favorite part about living/working in Old Town?
I love the history and architecture. It's just sweet and charming.
3) Favorite thing to do in Alexandria on a free day?
I don't do it enough, but going to Founders Park with my Nugget (my puggle), friends, a full picnic basket, and hanging out in the sun.
4) Favorite spot to grab a drink?
I'm not much a drinker, so I love grabbing a coffee or tea at ESP Killer.
5) Favorite day trip outside of Alexandria?
Middleburg and Upperville. I'm an equestrian. I always loved a long day at a horse show and delicious dinner at the Red Fox Inn or Hunters Head Tavern.
Thank you, Ashleigh! We are looking forward to seeing more of your work soon!