28 Jun 2021

At Home - The Shopkeeper's Apartment

Today, we have a nosey inside Catherine's home. Catherine is one of the Maven sisters.  Here, she shares some photos of her home and a little about making changes at home during a Pandemic.

How would you describe your home?

I live in a modern ground floor 2 bedroom apartment.  I have an open plan living room with my dining / work desk and a galley kitchen. In my spare room I have a single bed that I can pull out to make a double. I have a LOT of plants, and really love how they have brightened up the whole flat. In my living room have a mix of Maven products and mid century pieces. I recently redecorated my bedroom. The walls were a dark navy and I changed to a beautiful soft pink from Little Green, China Clay Deep. It’s very serene.

 Has your home had to change as life has changed over the last 15 months?

Absolutely. I’m pretty sure I have never spent as much in my home as I have recently,  I’m sure most people are the same. My dining table is now is now my desk, so my living area is also my work area. I’m really looking forward to getting back into the office. We were in between offices when the pandemic started and are just about to sign a lease on a new space. Spending so much time at home meant I really had no excuse not to re-organise and move things about. My plant collection has grown, I really feel that adds another level of cosiness.

Can you tell us a little about your role at Maven?

I am co-owner along with my sister Patricia. I can’t quite believe that Maven will be open 8 years in November. It’s quite hard to describe my role as it involves a little bit of everything. I look after a lot of the day to day admin that is involved in running a business, the finances, HR and strategic planning. I have a Masters in Business and pre-Maven I worked in PA, Admin and Project Management roles in varying size of companies. I really learnt a lot skills that I have been able to apply to running a business. With our new website I am also doing a little of everything that’s required for it. I cover shifts in the shop, but the most important role I have is that of the IT department..! 

You put the Maven Sounds playlists together for us, what does the Maven DJ listen to at home?

Ha! I wouldn't call myself a DJ, I would need a need a bit more practice for that. The playlists are always pretty random and normally a mix of tunes I love and ones I have been listening to more recently. During lockdown I really went between listening to music, listening to the radio or listening to podcasts... at the minute I'm in radio mode, usually BBC 6 Music and evening music shows on Radio Ulster and Raidió Fáilte. Podcasts I've enjoyed recently are the Northern Bank Job, (on the Northern Bank robbery) and The Jungle Prince from The New York Times. For a bit of light listening and a wee laugh, My Therapist Ghosted Me.

How do you relax?

I have to say that I am delighted that the gyms have re-opened. I found it quite difficult to switch off from work during this years lockdown. I’m back at regular reformer pilates and yoga classes, and that has really helped over the last few weeks. Fortunately I have had the concentration to read, although the books are classic holiday reading material…! Music always helps too. I enjoy getting to the seaside to walk, swim and picnic. Now that things are getting back to normal it’s been really lovely to spend time with family and friends over a meal out. The ultimate relaxation is time spent in Donegal.

 Is there anything at Maven you have your eye on?

It would have to be the Knitting Chair by Menu. We have the sheepskin and walnut version in the shop and it is just delightful. I also love the new Hammock from Ferm Living but I don’t have the space for it.


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