Namu Home Goods founder (and former staff member) Diana Ryu became fascinated by wood after she and her husband moved into a property with a hundred-year-old oak tree in the yard. The tree was protected by the city; if someone cut it, it would result in thousands of dollars in fines and maybe several months in prison. When Ryu started EMDR, a mind-body healing technique, she used that oak as a totem: She imagined – and herself – holding on through hard winters, lying in her seat, knowing she would always be there when the spring was coming.
After a woodworking class where Ryu watched wood beams cut the metal saw, she was attracted to people who had developed the ability to work with-not against the natural strength and endurance of wood. . He discovered a monthly woodworking magazine in Korea that became his guide to this new world. He traveled to Korea for six weeks to meet artists who put their body and heart into working with wood. And then Ryu launched Namu Home Goods, a curated line of gallery-quality wooden objects that showcase the talent of the artists who make them – and the life of the trees that are handcrafted.
While Namu Home Goods is leaving, Ryu admits that leaving the corporate world to start his own business was not exactly a stress-free experience. “I’m still so scared to let go of stability,” Ryu says. “I grew up with a single mother who was an immigrant. It has been established to me that stability is happiness. ”
Some routines – daily walks, therapy, energy work, cooking – kept her grounded. But what raises it is the support of their community. “I think we’ll launch Namu and it’ll just be the crickets.” But it was so interesting to see all these people come out of the woods wishing they could succeed. “
How do you start your day?
Hot water with lemon and a cup of pu’er, a tea fermented from China. I went to a tea ceremony a couple of years ago where a tea sommelier taught me about puer. When you drink it, you can feel some of that acidity from the vinegar from the fermentation. The best ones are some of the most expensive teas in the world. (I have mine in Whole Foods.)
What is your longest wellness ritual?
I have been pulling oil every day for ten years. I can not no do it. When I travel, I will also go to a local grocery store and grab a jar of coconut oil.
How do you like to move?
Every day, without fail, I take a walk in this big and beautiful park called Ascot Hills. It’s just my time to be alone with our dog. I usually listen to something that makes me laugh or podcast How I Built It. I started doing Pilates with Melissa Wood Health, as well.
How do you keep your energies in check?
I did an energetic job with Katy Meade King which helped me a lot in terms of dealing with my fear of losing stability. My body was shaking and shaking, and it cleared all those blocks I had. Katy taught me to put myself down quickly in moments of uncertainty. She asked me to put my feet on the ground and imagine the roots coming out of my feet, which shine like earth and cement, covering the city I live in, the country I live in, the world, the heart of the earth. It helped me feel safe and on the ground.
What are your favorite pieces in Namu’s collection?
Artist Kim Min Wook loves fashion, and began her career as a bespoke male tailor and also worked in visual merchandising before finding her career in woodworking. There is a fantastic appreciation for the details in Kim’s work. In Ash’s Korean Ash Bowl, she left the natural wood untreated to let shine the incredible rings of the tree, like a beautiful pattern on a textile. The wood used for this bowl is originally from a mountain called Taebaek, and Kim also sewed cracks in the bowl using cast aluminum and copper staples, leveraging her experience by creating a bespoke dress.
Years ago, artist Kim Hyunu went to a heritage art gallery and fell in love with the shape of the jar jar and decided to try it out in his midst. Lunar vases have been an integral part of Korean life and art since the 18th century. They were created to celebrate the beauty of the full moon and were initially used for flowers or wine. Normally, lunar vases are made of porcelain, but with wood, you can see the knots attached – it is the artist’s deliberate choice to highlight the beauty of the cracks and the coloring of nature.
What is the kitchen?
I cook Korean food the most. I make a lot of soups and many simple vegetable dishes. Because I grew up eating Korean food, I am confident in the taste. But if I try to make a lasagna or something, I’m like, Oh, I’ve only seen it at school or in restaurants. So I can’t quite taste it.
What’s on your reading list?
I tried to finish The Body Maintains the Point, but it’s pretty heavy stuff. I can only read two pages a night. I started The Magician by John Fowles, a gift from my friend JJ Ramberg, who runs goodpods, a social podcasting app.
Your guard comfort?
A Korean variety show called Campu Solu where they put the cameras in the homes of a single celebrity and spend a very real day with them. It’s fun.
Find Goop’s favorite beauty?
I love the scalp goop scrub. We have hard water in our house, and it seems to me that the salt spray is the only thing that can remove all that gunk from my hair. The foam is luxurious.
How does it set?
I always take magnesium at night.
What do you think of the inspiration?
I commissioned my husband, artist and actor Joseph Lee, to create a representation of Namu’s ethos. While Namu Home Goods ’goal of caring for the heritage trees will be passed down through generations, the most important goal is to showcase and celebrate creativity in Asian bodies. We created a limited edition Giclee print that comes in the colors, umber and putty of Namu Home Goods.
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