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I'm Hillary Mathewson

Favorite colors: green and yellow

Favorite food: anything pasta AND anything chocolate

Favorite outdoor activity: paddle boarding! I have two boards - when you're in the Charlotte, NC area, let's hit the lake (I'm not kidding!) 

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My Story

It all started twenty five years ago: a small Canadian ski town, a honeymoon and a coupe salad plate. Who knew what that little plate would set into motion ... 

Up until that trip, I hadn't considered myself a true Creative. I had a marketing degree and worked for a non profit in a position that fit me perfectly: grant writing (I love writing), fundraising (I'm good at asking for things) and event planning (who doesn't want to throw parties?).


So, the trip: my new husband and I took a break from the slopes and sat down in a small studio in the middle of Whistler and painted. And I KNEW this was it. It fit my personality, my skills, my interests. I HAD to be a part of this creative world.  

My entrepreneurial interest (thanks mom and dad!) and creativity (thanks Grammie!) collided into an awesome adventure. My first studio, Pottery Works, opened in Jacksonville, Florida in 1997. 

I had a great run with my studio. I even delivered my first baby, Mary, in the studio! No, I didn't. But wouldn't that make a great story? I successfully sold Pottery Works after five years to move with my husband, Mary and the US Navy to Ocean Springs, Mississippi. 

We REALLY enjoyed our time in Mississippi. I bought a kiln and created a very nice business painting custom handprint pottery for local gift stores. I consulted with several studios in the area, as well as helped a new pottery painting studio open in downtown Ocean Springs. 

After two years in Mississippi, it was onto San Diego - again with my husband, Mary and the US Navy - AND a little bean we would soon name Douglas. The husband retires from the military a couple years later and I confidently declare that we're driving to Charlotte, NC because I heard it's nice. (My mom confirmed that.)

Not knowing what to do now that we were in Charlotte, the husband got a job and I house hunted ... and what do you know? I found a house AND a brand new shopping center for my new studio. Art Space Studio opened early 2007. Not the best timing as the center was new (it's a big center and no one really knew it was open, let alone my studio was even there), we were new to the area (no friends to help spread the word), and soon after, the economy tanked. Ummm. Whose idea was this?

I didn't really have many options, so I dug in. Using all of my creativity and ingenuity, that studio not only survived, but thrived. We came out of those bad economic times strong, continuing to grow. 


After running my awesome business for almost 13 years, I sold Art Space Studio in the summer of 2019. 

I am 100% a follower of manifestation: over time, incrementally, everything you learn, experience, feel, deal with, invent, tear down and create leads you to something amazing.


And my "something amazing" is The Creative Retailer. With over 20 years of leading, owning, working and immersing myself in the creative world, I am exactly where I can serve best.

Please be a part of this community and enjoy the journey that is YOUR business. 

- Hillary

PS: I like to share reading recommendations, as books can truly be transformational. Find all of my latest reads HERE

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