Annie Selke on Pine Cone Hill, Dash & Albert and how she manages a mountain of inspiration!

Yipee! It’s Annie Selke and I at her headquarters in Pittsfield, MA. Annie is an author, designer and founder  the renowned home furnishing companies of Pine Cone Hill and Dash and Albert. Pine Cone Hill  features bedding, sleepware, table linens and accessories (eek! fun! scarves!) with a bright, happy and contemporary vibe. Dash and Albert  features unique, durable (hello! dog lovers) and affordable indoor and outdoor rugs. (Love them!!)

One of the reasons that I wanted to interview Annie, was to really get a sense of how she “dreamt big” about her future when she was just sewing cushions in her garage.You’ll get the details in this conversation. What I was so taken with is how much creative energy she has.  I realized that if she can stay inspired and completely  engaged as a right brained creative and STILL know and care about every detail in her warehouse, then I had better quit making ANY excuses in my business. No more using the excuse (yes, sometimes it is an excuse) that being creative means you don’t have  good business sense. Annie is a perfect example being intensely creative running lifestyle brand and  running a successful business. I was surprised to learn she works in photoshop on designs every chance she gets. Are you motivated yet?  Watch the video and see how she does it.

Also scroll down the page and  see details to enter to win an awesome rug tote bag or the fun design book written by Annie, Fresh American Spaces.

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Smart Creative Women and Annie are giving away both a tote bag to one person and a book to another person. 2 winners! Of course,  if you have Las Vegas good luck, you could even win both! Just post a comment below and tell us what you thought of the interview and that will be counted as your entry. If you want another entry and you have a twitter account, give the interview a shout out on twitter using the hash tag #DunkinDog. (Hee-hee, you have to listen until the very end to see why that is the hash tag) Annie can be found on twitter @AnnieSelkeCo and I can be found at @SmartCreativeW, just in case you aren’t already a follower! You have until 10PM EST March19 to enter. Good luck!

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  • Laurie Nelson

    I really enjoyed this interview with Annie and her continued enthusiasm for what she does. I also like the comment about the worlds and families, that is what my art room feels like. I have these different worlds of interests in what I create and I thought maybe I was unfocused but this interview shows that you can do a variety of things and still have it all work together. I also like her take on the environment that she has for her workers, what a wonderful idea and wish it was implemented in more places! Thank you for this interview! Now will have to check out her blog as well and product line. Thank you Monica Lee. Laurie Nelson

  • Lisa Carr

    Great interview. It is always great to see successful women.

  • terri flowerchild

    thought it was an interesting conversation. thanks.

  • Betz

    Wonderful interview! I love Annie’s attitude and sense of humor. She seems very authentic and I appreciate her sharing her story. Thanks, Monica!

  • http://martaspendowska.com/ Marta Spendowska

    Such a treat! Thanks Monica!

  • http://twitter.com/collageartist Claudine Hellmuth

    Fabulous interview! It was so fascinating to hear about how more growth actually equals less $ in the business because you are using that $ to generate more inventory. My sister in law and I were talking about this last week as she in a similar place with her business. It’s so tricky!

  • http://www.facebook.com/miki.berman Miki Berman

    I have a great admiration for Ms. Selke’s Business and Artistic sensibilities. Wow!!! Thanks Monica Lee.

  • Melissa Saylor

    Wonderful interview, loved it. Really loved the part about following your gut. Sometimes that is so hard to do. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  • Melissa

    Monica! I so enjoyed learning about these companies. So bright and vibrant! I loved hearing about how Annie is inspired by her trips, architecture, and her collections. I also thought it was interesting that she’s still working on bringing to life ideas she had a few years ago. It all takes time, doesn’t it? Also, her lessons in trusting her instincts. Such a great interview!

  • Michele

    Wow! What a creative driven lady! I would love to work with someone like that! Follow your dreams! I love collecting fabric too!

  • http://twitter.com/LauraHamor Laura Hamor

    Great interview! I love hearing about the business journey and Annie’s creative organization (even if that is how she organizes her mind! ; ) Thanks for including some of the nuts and bolts of borrowing and taking risks. Love it all! (happily sharing on twitter!)

  • http://www.facebook.com/shannon.crandall1 Shannon Crandall

    Love Love Love his interview….Annie you gave me so many aha moments with what you talked about. Your story and messages really resonated with me. I am a self taught driven designer as well and I could feel your passion in the way you talked about your process and your journey. I am really finding alot of clarity this year with my own business and design work… Thanks for sharing…truly appreciated your openess! Shannon Crandall

  • Anita

    What an inspiring interview! Thank you for introducing us to Annie, and her products. I love that she shared so much about her growth in the business, and admire her for sticking to her guns and doing what her instincts tell her, and that even in recent financial times she kept on keeping on and bringing new products to market. Applause!!!

  • Anne

    Inspiring!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/sue.allemand Sue Allemand

    WOW oh wow!! What a great interview girls!! Annie you are such a determined lady! It’s so great to hear your road to success! I remember those days, 20 years ago, when a buyer would come in my store and ask, “Is HE in?” Um hello — there is no HE! haha Just a young, 20 something SHE with a lot of big dreams! Thanks for inspiration!!

  • Jennifer S.

    Monica,
    I really enjoyed your interview with Annie! it was wonderful to hear about an creative business woman’s progressive journey to build her empire and yet stay close to her heart. And I must add that interviewing in person suits you well….watch out OWN here comes Monica Lee! I can’t wait for another one.

  • http://twitter.com/clarejordan Clare Jordan

    Wonderful interview Monica & so great to hear how growing pains need to be financed…really pertained to where I’m at. Annie Selke is an inspiration & thoroughly enjoyed this interview. Oh & she totally needs to focus on retail site for us Europeans who adore USA products, I’m getting a rug… Mucho thanks , Clare

  • http://www.facebook.com/suzanneurbandesigns Suzanne Urban

    I enjoyed this interview because Annie has a comfortable laid back attitude yet sharp business instincts. I’ve come across some women who apparently think they have to be all “shark” and no humor or kindness in order to succeed; I don’t feel their attitude really jives with today’s business module. Yet it’s always refreshing to find out about about someone like Annie-and funny I was going to buy one of her braided rugs for my studio-and will soon-without knowing much about her company until now! I had no idea Pittsfield was only and hour and a half away from me!

  • http://www.facebook.com/suzanneurbandesigns Suzanne Urban

    P.S. are those Clumber spaniels?

  • Cherish Flieder

    Fantastic interview! I am inspired in so many ways. Mainly, I love how Annie talks about the different “worlds” instad of using “collections.” Thank you Annie and Monica. :)

  • Terri

    Very inspiring interview. Gets me thinking about my own passion and how I should follow it. Easy to see others “passion paths” but not your own. Thanks for sharing Annie.

  • http://profiles.google.com/hiccupskids Natalie Ryan

    I am installing a pin board in my studio tomorrow! Thank you for the inspiring interview.

  • Kristin Nicholas

    What a great interview with an awesome businesswoman. I paint while I listen and this was a great listen. Thanks. Would love to win one or both. Good weekend!

  • Darlene

    Inspiring interview and Lady!

  • Beth Parker

    Thanks so much for this wonderful interview! Annie is inspiring!

  • http://twitter.com/Letterheadgirl Debi Sementelli

    I appreciated hearing Annie talk about how what she designs comes from what excites her rather than following a particular trend. Helpful to hear that.

  • Lee Kellogg

    A great interview! I have now learned why I have no money, we grew like the dickens last year and are still trying to grow but there’s no money. Now I know why! Thank you for the inspiration.

  • http://www.facebook.com/goodpony Lisa Martin-Gerdes

    Inspired! wonderful interview-thank you.

  • Anita K

    Wonderful interview. I’m inspired!

  • Megan

    Great interview. I love how she just took control, followed her gut, and took risks. She loves what she does and truly appreciates her customers. Thanks!!!!

  • Becca

    Very inspiring. She really started with a business mind!

  • Hildy Lake

    Have to admire anyone who is creative and can make a living doinng what they love. And of course a million extra kudos for incorporating dog lovers~

  • http://theOldpostroadblog.blogspot.com/ Trish Jones

    Love her talent! The colors are always great!

  • meg @ pureandsimpleblog.com

    Really great interview Monica! Excited that you had the opportunity to share this with us

  • Angela Anderson

    What a great interview! I think it is the best one so far Monica. Annie Selke seems to be fearless in business, a original creative spirit and a genuinely kind person. And a dog lover just puts the cherry on top.

  • OliviaRubin

    I have been watching the latest interviews of notable women in business and after watching this…Anne Selke leaned in! Her creative path to design sends an inspiring message. It’s functional and durable and most importantly keeps in mind our best four-legged friends.

  • OliviaRubin
  • http://www.facebook.com/autumn.hathaway.9 Autumn Hathaway

    This was a seriously informative yet lighthearted interview. Loved the location and felt like I was there. Great job Monica. Thanks Annie…you inspire us all.

  • http://www.facebook.com/NikaGarciaSings Nika Garcia

    wonderful wonderful love the beautiful work and all the bands and goodies. Love the bedding the jammies and that tote is gorge!!!!! great to learn about you both!!!!

  • Claire O’Connor

    Love, love, LOVE Annie!! Soooo inspiring! Very welcoming and accessible interview — thank you, both!

  • Lou Ann Kobus

    I loved the interview! Being from Western Mass, it’s nice to hear someone talk about Pittsfield. What a nice community you have…….and to have such a booming business in the Berkshires is a huge plus for us Massachusetts people! Dash and Albert, love the rugs and now they seem a little more special knowing the company was named after your beloved dogs!

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