The line between décor and art often blurs. And within that margin sits Dream House. This home décor startup launched this month via an exhibition at Boston University’s College of Fine Arts, which included Dream House co-founder Molly Rosner’s paintings, photographs and small sculptures. Cleverly, the BU senior and Dream House partner Julie Jackson turned the senior showcase into Dream House’s launch. So in addition to artifacts, the exhibit included inventory.
“We wanted to see if people would be interested,” says Jackson. “Rather than do a focus group, we saw what the reaction was at an exhibition. It was great; lots of people put in orders.”
Jackson says Rosner’s work can cater to both big spenders and students on a budget.
“Dream House is about making art accessible to people our age with prints of Molly’s work,” she says. “But we also want to sell the more expensive original art as well. That might appeal to a different demographic outside of college. But whoever is buying, it’s wall art, but personal.”
Jackson, a business student, says Dream House’s prints, photographs and original art will expand into other originally designed household goods and accessories. Their design and business inspiration is mass-produced art master Andy Warhol.
“It’s pop art and vintage glamour. Molly’s work is very straightforward. It’s meant to put a smile on your face.”
The pair got serious about Dream House last October and word soon spread via what was also once just a Massachusetts campus start-up, Facebook. This move brought in fellow B.U. students as their first customers.
Buzz at B.U. isn’t their business plan, though.
“It would be great to some day have a physical space, or sell in other stores," says Jackson, "or show at other galleries. We invited some gallery owners to the exhibit and got a great response. That proved to us that we have a market beyond students and people our age.”
As for the response, Jackson says it has been almost prohibitively good.
“The response has been so overwhelming that we haven’t had time to get our website up, but we will. We need to go beyond social media and school to be a real business,” says Jackson. “This is what we hope will be an empire.”