During the ABC Kids Expo, we had the pleasure of meeting Newport Cottages owner, Pockets Alvarez and his wife Cristina. I have always been a huge fan of their line of cottage-style children’s furniture, but after meeting them I am really hooked! Seeing their passion for the company and learning that they created it out of their desire to create beautiful rooms for their own children, makes this line truly special. The team at Newport Cottages knows what it means to create fun and quality furniture for children. All of their pieces are made in the US with a dedication to using only the best hardwoods to ensure quality and durability. They also have almost 20 different finishes to choose from, allowing you to create a custom room specially made for your little one. I hope that after reading this interview with Pockets, it will be as clear to you as it is to me the passion this company has for helping other families create dream rooms for their children.
How would you define the Newport Cottages style philosophy?
I would say that our styles are classic and relaxed. All of our collections are built with quality and integrity, and our custom finishes and colors are perfect tools for personalizing each piece. Providing quality, US made furniture is a cornerstone of our company.
What inspired you to become a designer and start a business?
I must have been about 12 years old when I started to draw and paint. I still have many of my drawings and some paintings from back then. I thought maybe I would be an architect but ended up in business school. Newport Cottages gives me a creative outlet–the opportunity to design and create furniture.
Why did you choose to design children’s furniture?
Our company actually began focused on adult cottage style furniture like coffee tables, buffets, etc. My wife, Cristy and I were shopping for our son’s big boy bed, and I know you’ve probably heard this a million times, but we just couldn’t find anything with the quality and style that we were looking for. We remember he wanted a blue bed so we made a twin size version of our Country Bed with a dresser and nightstand.
We ended up having a great response at our first tradeshow. Our cottage style finishes are perfect for our young ones. Children’s furniture allows for a greater expression through color which is always fun.
What is your favorite part of your daily work when you reflect on the day, what is most rewarding?
I love it when I hear of a customer that purchased Newport Cottages for their nursery years ago, and now that they’re planning their big girl or big boy room, they again choose our line. There’s no greater compliment than that, and I feel honored and privileged.
If you had to pick a favorite design from your collection, what would it be?
What sets Newport Cottages apart from other designers and collections in your industry?
Our industry is primarily comprised of imported product, high volume and a low value on quality. We are proud to create a high quality product right here in the US. The ability to customize finishes and personalize each piece is something that is rarely seen in our industry.
Do you have any news that you would like to share, perhaps about upcoming designs or introductions to your line?
As far as news…well many of you know that this month is Breast Cancer Awareness month. To raise awareness, our specially designed “Hope Crib” is part of a very worthy cause and a portion of each sale will benefit the Susan G Komen Foundation. We appreciate Rosenberry Rooms for their gracious help in showcasing this crib during October. For those in the Newport Beach area, please join us for our exclusive cocktail event Friday October 28th from 5 to 7pm hosted by Newport Cottages and Little Crown Interiors, the creators of the Hope Crib.
Now…Just for Fun
Thai food is great, but then again so is a perfectly grilled steak. On a few occasions I’ve had this rib eye steak with a very light coffee rub served medium rare… delicious. For dessert I would go with a Crème Brulee or something moist with rich chocolate.
Favorite TV Show
It really depends on the mood I’m in. I think that Bored to Death on HBO is very funny, intelligent and edgy. CNN, is always good, and the jury is still out on the new Two and a Half Men with Ashton Kutcher.
Maybe Pulp Fiction. Quentin Tarantino’s a great director and the cast in that movie is great. There are so many great movies with highly talented actors such as Denzel Washington and I can’t leave out Al Pacino.
Favorite Weekend Activity
Spending time with my family above all. It’s difficult but so important to slow down, appreciate and enjoy time with family. Cristy and I have 3 boys, so most of the time we’re running around with them to sporting and school events. I also like to road and mountain bike when I find the time.
Perhaps the Dave Matthews Band which I recently went to see in concert. The Eagles are another band that is definitely on my favorite list. Others would include Jack Johnson, Neil Young, Brubeck and Paul Desmond.