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From Schoolhouse to Biddy, Meet Katie Dunnwirth

In our Creative Spotlight series, we feature the people behind the brand. Meet Katie Dunnwirth of Biddy and learn about her obsession with tiles and rugs, her sourcing motto and how she's already made her mark in the vintage community.

Marguerite St: Introduce yourself! Tell us about you and your background.

Katie Dunnwirth: Hi!! I’m Katie Dunnwirth—I’m originally from northern California (Siskiyou County), but have been living in Portland, OR for the last 8 years. Before COVID hit, I was styling product photography and coordinating photoshoots for Schoolhouse and thrifting on the side ;).

MSt: What's the origin of Biddy?

KD: Biddy was born out of my love for second hand objects, and giving old items new life. It felt really natural and exciting to create a platform to celebrate and appreciate what already exists. After getting laid off from my full time gig it felt like a great opportunity to translate my own styling experience and long standing personal passion into a small biz.

MSt: Describe your approach to curating objects.

KD: I respond to the personality of an object. I base my curatorial style off of my own taste. My sourcing motto has always been “pick the cool shit YOU would want in your house—not what you think someone else might be into.” With that said, I tend to avoid sticking to a particular theme, color scheme or era. My own personal taste is derived from allll kinds of styles, colors, textures and layers. MSt: What makes an object a Biddy object?

KD: Love this question! First off, it’s important to me that a Biddy object is fairly priced and accessible to many. A Biddy object can range from a slightly absurd impractical piece, to a well-made functional item. When I do my weekly drops I love to cover as many of the material categories as possible—a little glass, a little wood, textiles, metals, BOOKS (the books are my fav). A Biddy object is often a unique or surprising take on an everyday item.

MSt: Tell us about the thrifting community in Portland.

KD: I haven’t been super engaged in the thrifting community (COVID) but my PDX thrifting buds on Instagram have been nothing but accepting and supportive.

MSt: What was the hardest piece for you to let go of?

KD: I kick myself all the time for letting go of this beautiful wood accordion sconce with a handmade parchment shade. It was insanely beautiful.

MSt: Describe Biddy in three words.

Unexpected, thoughtful, and forever ping-ponging back & forth between understated and overstated.

MSt: What is in Biddy's future?

KD: I’d love to get Biddy off of Etsy and onto a website by 2022! My biggest goal right now is to keep Biddy healthy by talking it super slow and making informed and thoughtful business decisions. As it grows, I may segue into selling contemporary wholesale pieces or partnering with makers!

MSt: Tell us your three current interior inspirations.

KD: (1) I’m pretty obsessed with tiles—I will spend hours on Pinterest drooling over beautiful tilework. (2) I’m also a huge fan of interiors that incorporate humor and lightness!! Some super design-y interiors can feel so museum-like and serious. I feel super inspired by playful spaces. (3) I will be obsessed with well-made rugs, layers of rugs, rugs on walls, rugs on beds, rugs rugs rugs until the day I die. MSt: Who would you love to collaborate with?

KD: As a MASSIVE lighting nerd, it would be a dream to collab on some classic vintage inspired silhouettes with someone like Rich Brilliant Willing or Allied Maker. Only in my dreams!

Shop Biddy on Etsy and Instagram.

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