To all of our friends, loyal customers, artists and designers,
The new year is going to be very big for us! As of February 1st, HQ will be selling it's last handmade creation. After almost 5 years of art and indie design the lease at our store will be up, and we've had the long and difficult decision of choosing whether to move the store to a new location, or call it a day and move on to phase two of world domination. This has no doubt been a huge decision, and we had to weigh many factors.
On one hand, we've enjoyed so much of our time creating HQ. We've had the chance to meet incredible and talented artists and designers who inspire us each day. We've thrown over 50 art openings, have helped new designers create their very first collections for our racks, and given our postcard printers contact info to more people than we can remember. We've seen our artists grow, flourish, have babies and move to new cities. Some of them even ended up moving here and buying duplexes with our friends and some of them ended up in our wedding party. Seeing the new and amazing things they’ve come up with has easily been the highlight of our job.
On the other hand, the day to day realities of running a store often overshadow the parts we love. As you all know, both of us also create our own work (clothing and art) so it's quite a juggling act balancing everything. Angie's line (Norwegian Wood) began in our 3rd year of running HQ, and with it's growth much of the brunt of the work at HQ has been laid on Tyson, giving him very little time to work on his art. So when the time came to think about moving vs. closing, the possibility of having time to develop our own work really appealed to us.
We hated the idea of losing contact with the creative community and creating opportunities for new designers and artists.
Then came Smart Design Mart.
Although this was an idea we dreamed up along with our friends (Mike Giles, Marc Simard, Yana Gorbulsky and Elaine Ho) an exciting side effect we soon discovered was that this could be a way for us to continue to be part of the community and help it grow. We've been so encouraged by the success of the shows that we hope to continue expanding them to include more specialized shows throughout the year.
To celebrate the 5 years of HQ, we will be hosting our final art exhibition on Friday January 14th, 2011. It is a group show entitled "BFFs" featuring works by almost all of the artists we've worked with over the years. Many of these artists are from out of town and since all the art must be sent back once we close, this may be your last chance to see much of this art here in Montreal! Take advantage!
Since you are all indeed our Best Friends Forever, we hope to see you there!
And as of right now we have marked down stock from various designers. 20-25% off on all collections by Birds Of North America, Valerie Dumaine, Betina Lou, Josiane Perron, Lifetime Collective and Brixton. As well as deals on our books! Get them while you can!
Tyson and Angie