Ever since Nate and Erin Moren met in a college woodshop course, they knew that they would one day work together. Their collaborative nature led Nate and Erin to build Tandem Made several years ago. The Minneapolis design/build studio creates objects that fuse function with a modern aesthetic. Passionate about premium and beautiful objects, the duo builds custom pieces and are expanding their product line to include small home goods and accessories.
Read more about Tandem Made’s story in our exclusive Modern Midwest Q&A.
Modern Midwest: Tell us a little about yourself. What’s your background?
Erin Moren: We are Nate and Erin Moren- the husband/ wife duo behind Tandem Made. After growing up in the suburbs of Minneapolis, we met while earning BFA degrees in furniture design from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Before attending MCAD Nate earned a degree in cabinetmaking. After attending MCAD Erin earned a Masters of Arts Management from Columbia College Chicago. We were married in 2009 and started Tandem Made in 2011.
MM: Tell us about your company.
EM: Tandem Made is a Minneapolis based design/ build studio passionate about making premium, beautiful objects that seamlessly blend function and aesthetics. From furniture, sculpture, built-ins and home accessories, Tandem Made enjoys working collaboratively to design and build custom one-of-a-kind pieces as well as their growing product line.
MM: When/why was it born?
EM: Ever since we met in the woodshop in college, we knew we wanted to work together someday. We enjoy collaborating and quickly realized that our individual strengths support each other really well. After working for a couple years after graduation, we decided to build a business and life together. In 2011 we started Tandem Made and is has been growing and evolving ever since.
MM: What’s your creative process like?
EM: We do a lot of verbal brainstorming followed by online research, and then what we call “marination” time, where we get the meat of the project out of our heads and then take some time to be inspired and develop our designs. Since we live and work together, our creative process happens all the time- while we’re cooking, cleaning, walking the dogs or doing yard work- our brains are in motion and we’re sharing ideas.
MM: What makes the Midwest, specifically Minnesota, special?
EM: The Midwest work ethic definitely adds something special to Minnesota creatives. The people of Minnesota are special- hardworking, kind and innovative. We’ve found such support in the creative community here- many opportunities to show, share, experience and sell artwork.
MM: What’s one thing a non-Minnesota native should know about the city?
EM: It’s not always cold!
MM: Where do you get your inspiration?
EM: We find so much of our inspiration from people and how they use spaces- function is key. How can we make things more efficient, smart, beautiful and worthwhile. We’re always searching for a need or problem and working to solve it through design.
MM: What’s something new – or challenging – that you’re working on?
EM: 2015 has been the year of taking risks! We started the year moving into our own shop space and have been experimenting with many different opportunities over the past couple months. This summer we started work on a product line of small home goods and accessories- it was both extremely fun and challenging. Managing timelines and brain power on custom projects and our product line has been so hard- but it’s already proven to be worth it- we’re so excited to be sharing this new collection of work complete with branded packaging!
MM: Any fun facts about the brand or making process that you’d like to share?
EM: We really do work together “ in tandem” most of the time- in the shop, cutting wood, measuring, planning and building. As well as in the office writing emails, managing budgets and marketing- we are always together and wouldn’t want it any other way. We also have 2 (tandem) dachshunds who follow us wherever we go as well!
Shop a variety of Tandem Made’s premium goods at Modern Midwest’s first-ever “Modern Market” in Minneapolis’ North Loop. In addition to Tandem Made, a carefully curated selection of local makers will showcase their goods at Modern Market – all of which embody the Midwest’s distinct take on modern living. Enjoy local food and drink, live music and art while supporting the Minneapolis maker community!
Thursday, December 3, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Fast Horse, 240 9th Ave N, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55401
GET IN ON THE ACTION!
$10 in advance / $20 day of