Country Chic at its Best
At the end of November 2010, Kim Berry and Carole Sinclair – cowgirls at heart – left their corporate jobs and combined their retail business and marketing skills to form a company devoted to repurposing vintage wares and creating one-of-a-kind custom furniture pieces from reclaimed wood.
Both Berry and Sinclair are Lafayette, California residents, but despite the fact that neither grew up on dusty roads, both have a fond attachment to rural, ranch-style living, and anything horsey. They successfully capture that sensibility with the products and services that they offer.
In an interview with Horse & Style, Berry and Sinclair told us that first and foremost, everything they do is based on a sense of partnership. Both grew up riding, and they know that if your horse didn’t respect you as a partner, no bond is possible. Their successful business relationship is based on a mutual respect for each other – just like that between a horse and rider.
Horse & Style: What was the inspiration for starting Farmyard Darlings?
Farmyard Darlings: We’re cowgirls at heart, and we wanted to incorporate our cowgirl smarts, country sass, and city class to create a viable business that would blend these talents.
H&S: Who are the Farmyard Darlings?
FD: Kim Berry and Carole Sinclair, a small team of two with big ideas and endless energy. Both Lafayette residents, Berry is a San Francisco/East Bay native, and Sinclair is originally from La Jolla in Southern California. Expert sleuths in unearthing farmilicious finds, they are also skilled in designing custom furniture from reclaimed wood.
H&S: What is the most exciting thing about owning and running Farmyard Darlings?
FD: Besides having an exceptional repeat customer base and being able to incorporate our love of horses into our brand, it would have to be the opportunity to create successful new products (i.e. elk antler wood boxes, cowhide handbags, cowhide iPhone holders for the saddle, cowhide flasks to fit into saddlebags, cowhide keychains, horse silhouette pillows, etc.), and the ability to be hands-on with our custom furniture made from reclaimed wood.
Kim and Carole with Farmyard Darlings custom conference table
H&S: How did you come up with the name?
FD: We were flipping through vintage cloth children’s books from the 1940s, and we came across one with images of adorable farmyard baby animals. We both thought the farmyard babies were just so ‘Darling!’ It was an ‘Ah hah’ moment; we looked at each other and commented simultaneously, “Farmyard Darlings would be a great name for our company!”
H&S: What has been your greatest challenge, and how have you overcome it?
FD: One of the many challenges has been to work with artists who ‘steal’ our designs and use our brand for their individual success. But one thing we’ve learned from horses is that they never forget anything! Their memory is nearly infallible, but also like horses, we FORGIVE.
H&S: What is the definition of a Farmyard Darling?
FD: Children often ask us, “What’s a ‘Farmyard Darling’?” We answer, “A Farmyard Darling is someone who has the courage to follow the dustier path, knowing there will be falls; and the spunk to get up, brush yourself off, and get going again.”
Read the rest of the interview with Farmyard Darling’s founders in our Jan/Feb 2016 issue on Issuu.com
If you love the rural ranch-style aesthetic,
all things horsey, and authentic country chic,
that and more can be found at:
Farmyard Darlings Furniture
3295 Mt. Diablo Boulevard
Lafayette, California 94549
Farmyard Darlings Mercantile & Gifts
20 Lafayette Circle in downtown Lafayette