Meet the Owners of Idlewild

Posted by Ashley Rouster Rigby on

In the Spring of 2018, Julie Clark and Jessica Murray were excited to come together as the new co-owners of Idlewild Woman. Julie and Jessica, along with Tessa, are the family of women behind all that is Idlewild. All makers themselves, Julie and Jessica saw the opportunity to purchase Idlewild as not only an amazing new venture, but as a way to highlight other makers in the Cincinnati community and across the globe. With a dedication to inclusivity, under Jessica and Julie’s leadership, Idlewild has expanded in so many exciting ways over the past years to include new designers, an expanded selection of clothing, shoes, accessories and housewares along with a dedication to expanded sizing. A strong commitment to sustainability and the fair treatment of all people, Jessica and Julie made ethically sourced and sustainably made clothing the foundation and mission of Idlewild, along with continued sustainability practices across the business. When you visit Idlewild, you are stepping into a carefully, lovingly and artistically curated space designed by Julie and Jessica, which will welcome you with open arms. 



Julie Clark |  curator and ceramicist

After purchasing Historic Bear’s Mill in Greenville, Ohio with her husband in 1979, Julie set up home and a clay studio in the adjacent barn which they renovated. For 34 years she served as the owner, manager and product/art curator of the Mill’s gallery and retail business. During this time, Julie created functional and sculptural ceramics, which were displayed and sold in the Mill’s gallery. In 2013, Julie and her husband sold the mill to a non-profit organization, which they helped to establish in 2000 for preservation purposes. They retained their home and studio space where Julie continues to create her ceramic work today. You will find much of this work available for sale at Idlewild. Julie says of her art, “My work has a modern, simple and rustic aesthetic that I believe evolved from my surroundings and experiences accumulated from curating art, product design, installations and travel. Producing pieces that can be touched and used are essential to me.” Inspired by her daughter, Tessa, Julie began making  porcelain jewelry  several years ago. This wearable art has become a staple at Idlewild, perfect for elevating any outfit and often purchased as a special and memorable present. You will see Julie’s touches throughout the store, not just in her pottery, but through her keen eye for design and installation. Julie is always ready to greet you warmly, and with her passion and artistic eye, it is no surprise that almost all our Idlewild team listed her as one of their fashion icons.

Jessica Murray |  graphic designer, photographer, and Francophile

After living in Paris for 3 years, Jessica returned to the US with thousands of beautifully shot photos of the streets of Europe and a desire to share those cities with those who love to travel as well. By combining her background in graphic design and photography with her passion for Paris and the European lifestyle, Jessica created a line of totes, personal accessories and printed pieces that are sold in store at Idlewild. Made in Cincinnati at Sew Valley, Jessica’s wearable art allows you to carry a bit of European whimsy with you wherever you go, whether out in OTR or on your own international travels. She describes her personal style as, “a mix of elevated timeless, figure-embracing pieces in neutral colors (aka lots of black!), paired with statement pieces: be it jewelry, a bag, or funky shoes (or all three!)”  You will often find Jessica at the store helping customers find the perfect fit for their body, and she knows just how to add accessories to an outfit to take it from usual to extraordinary. When asked what she loves most about owning and working at Idlewild Jessica said, “I absolutely love working with customers and helping them find pieces that fit their bodies beautifully and make them feel confident!” We have certainly all benefited from Jessica’s encouragement when finding a garment that looks and feels great.


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