SARAH CONTRUCCI SMITH
ARA COLLECTIVE, FOUNDER
We collaborate with artisans to curate handcrafted home goods, blending traditional craftsmanship with modern style.
Sarah Contrucci Smith is the founder and designer of Ara Collective. Inspired by the warmth and wildness of her childhood in Indonesia, she’s drawn to the eloquence of age-old designs and the complexity of artisanal techniques. She believes the high quality work of these makers can and should sustain a livelihood and provide economic opportunity. Sarah earned her Master’s Degree in International Development from Eastern University and her Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Azusa Pacific University. After living in Indonesia, Uganda, Canada, Mexico, and Guatemala, she now lives in Austin, Texas with her handsome hubby, adventurous toddler and big, lazy Rhodesian Ridgeback. At any given time you’ll find Sarah outdoors near a body of water, planning her next trip, or curled up with a big bowl of mashed potatoes.
Q & A
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF?
My favorite thing about myself is my drive. It is tirelessly hopeful, hardworking, undaunted by challenges and curious. It's also my least favorite thing about myself. I have too high of expectations, feel like a failure/useless because I'm not hitting my goals (or finishing my to do list), and I'm unwilling to walk away when sometimes I should. I've been digging in to the Ennegram lately and it's been helpful to learn about being a Type 8 with a 7 Wing, and how to embrace these qualities as I refine them.
WHAT IS ONE (SMALL OR BIG) THING YOU ARE HOPING TO ACCOMPLISH IN YOUR BUSINESS THIS YEAR?
In 2019, I hope we can collaborate with more designers to put together custom designs and internationally sourced collections for commercial projects, like boutique hotels and private labels. With the nature of our work being handmade in small batches and the incredible talent of our weavers, we're able to customize textiles in a way that few companies can. And it's a fun opportunity to play with new designs!
WHAT DOES BEING LIBERATED MEAN TO YOU?
To me, liberated means the freedom to choose what our lives looks like, and to thrive.