Muse of November
Our friend and fellow female business owner, Agostina, is this months inspiration! Agostina recently opened a storefront and launched her online shop, Valiente Goods, naturally, we dubbed her our November Muse! Many congratulations Agostina and wishing you all the best :)
Valiente Goods, is a curated lifestyle boutique specializing in vintage and handmade treasures. Here's the inside scoop from behind the scenes.
TELL US ABOUT YOU. WHAT ARE YOUR PASSIONS?
Travel, textiles and vintage. I'm a textile designer with a deep love for bohemian interiors, mid-century furniture and abstract art. I was born in Argentina and moved to the U.S. when I was 10. Growing up as an immigrant in a diverse community of South Florida really opened up my mind to cultural discovery and immersion. Now I'm passionate about discovering new places, trying new foods and experiencing how people live in different corners of the world.
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR INDIVIDUAL STYLE?
Eclectic. Not in the way that I mix and match pieces together necessarily, but in a way that it is not just one style. It changes a lot depending on my mood and what I'm doing day-to-day. I am very attracted to bright colors and patterns, but when it comes to clothes I love wearing mainly white black and gray. My go-to outfit is boyfriend jeans, a vintage tee, and sneakers. Lately, I have been dressing that up by wearing red lipstick from The Tart Peach.
CAN YOU SHARE WHAT YOUR LIFE IN ARGENTINA WAS LIKE? WHAT DO YOU MISS ABOUT IT?
I grew up in a family of artists and makers. My grandfather is a poet and a painter, my grandmother was a seamstress and her family owned a leather tannery. My mom is a printmaker, so I was always surrounded by art and I was always making something with my hands. My grandma taught me how to sew when I was 4 or 5, and we would make tiny dresses together for my dolls. We made notebooks out of scrap paper, that I would fill with tiny sketches of elaborate gowns. I grew up very close to my family and that is what I miss the most. That and the mountains.
WHAT WAS THE MOMENT LIKE WHEN YOU DECIDED TO PURSUE THIS FULL-TIME?
It was liberating. I've always known I wanted to be my own boss but I had to be ready before making the jump. Both of my parents do their own thing, and I am very similar to my dad in that we both find it hard to follow rules and invest our time/energy/ideas for the success of someone else. I had toyed with the idea of quitting my job for over a year, but it was my dad who would continuously tell me to wait for the moment when I just "knew" I had to do it. There were a lot of moments that felt like the right time, but they weren't. When it was the right time, I knew and then everything else fell into place.
HOW DO YOU DETERMINE WHAT KIND OF GOODS YOU WILL SELL IN YOUR SHOP?
Intuition and quality of goods. The items have to be genuine and well made. When you travel to places like Guatemala and Morocco, it is very easy to find mass-produced imitations of the real thing. I love going off the beaten path, getting lost and finding exactly what I am looking for. I have a very clear image of what I want the shop to feel like, and I let my gut guide most of my purchases. That is not to say that I am an impulse buyer, but rather an "I will know when I see it " buyer. I curated the collection of greeting cards in the shop and that took a full week of googling and Instagram searching to find the right artists to feature.
PICK ONE THING IN YOUR SHOP THAT YOU ARE STRONGLY CONNECTED TO. TELL US ABOUT IT.
My favorite item in the shop right now is the Handira, or Moroccan Wedding Blankets. Vintage Handira from the Berber tribes are such special textiles. They are woven by a bride's family leading up to her wedding and then draped on the bride after the ceremony is done. They are beautifully woven with natural wool and embellished with sequins. I used to dream about these textiles when I was in college and they were so unattainable, now I have them in the shop.
YOU'RE A TRAVELER. TELL US, WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN... WHERE DO YOU HOPE TO GO, AND WHAT DO YOU HOPE TO FIND?
I've been to a few places in South and Central America (Guatemala and Peru are a must see). Most recently I traveled to Thailand and Morocco, both blew my mind in so many ways. I would love to go to Bali at some point. I don't like to have many expectations before going to a place, so I guess what I hope to find is adventure, friendships, and good food.
WHAT IS YOUR REAL HONEST TAKE ON OPENING UP SHOP? BOIL IT DOWN TO 2-3 SENTENCES (IF YOU CAN).
Opening the shop has been both the most challenging and rewarding experience I have ever had. I love being able to be my own boss and spending all day doing what I love to do, but most importantly what I want to be doing. That being said, there are a lot of "what if's" and uncertainties that give me a lot of anxiety, especially when I am falling asleep.
SHARE SOMETHING ABOUT YOURSELF, SOMETHING THAT ISN'T DIRECTLY CONNECTED TO YOUR SHOP, BUT THAT IS MORE ABOUT YOU!
I'm an introverted extrovert. I'm a total homebody who loves watching Gilmore Girls while cuddling my dogs. At the same time I have a lot of FOMO always, so I push myself to go to things and talk to new people and make new friends. It's super hard to make friends and find community when you are an adult in a new place, but especially if you love to stay home like I do. Doing things like the Columbus Flea has helped me so much in becoming a part of the community in Columbus and I am so grateful to be here and be a part of that community that includes my beautiful friends at ONE SIX FIVE.
Agostina is styled wearing the Recycled Leather Half Circle Statement Earrings in collaboration with Multitudes Studio.