written by:
March 2, 2010

Dave Brown founded Holiday Matinee after agreeing to be the publicist for his friends in Jimmy Eat World--without even known what a publicist did. After a two-year hiatus from the company, during which he worked for social media startup VMIX, Brown has put his energy--and full-time hours--back into Holiday Matinee, recreating it as a place that "promotes creativity."

The Holiday Matinee office at The Hive
The Holiday Matinee office at The Hive
2 / 3
Baggu is the result of a mother-daughter collaboration to make a dent in reducing the use of plastic bags. Their reusable bags are on sale at <a href="http://baggubag.com/">baggubag.com</a>.
Baggu is the result of a mother-daughter collaboration to make a dent in reducing the use of plastic bags. Their reusable bags are on sale at baggubag.com.
Originally appeared in I Swear to Good You are God at This
3 / 3
Brown Dave Holiday Matinee

The first iteration of Holiday Matinee was as a PR, marketing, and branding company--with whatever else clients called up for tossed in, too. It started when Brown and Jimmy Eat World lead singer Jim Adkins designed the band's album cover together and Capital Records called to ask if Brown knew of a publicist. Without pausing, he said, "Yeah, I do that too."

In 2006, Brown put Holiday Matinee on hold to work with social media startup VMIX. He decided to leave the company in 2008 to do what he was really passionate about: finding and sharing stories about creative people doing good work for the better good.

Brown's first book, I Swear to Good You Are God at This, a compilation of 25 people and projects "making awesome," was published earlier this year. Associate editor Miyoko Ohtake sat down with Brown last week to chat about what else he's up to.

Before you took a break from Holiday Matinee, the company was a PR, marketing, branding, do-it-all organization--and having a bit of an identity crisis of its own. What is Holiday Matinee now?
We're a company that promotes creativity. The focus is on the website as a creative blog. The goal is to turn people on to creative things, showcase people doing good design, start a dialogue.
You're also developing products, like the book. Are there more in the works?
There's the Artist Series of t-shirts, which encompass two things I love: a decent person and a graphic t-shirt. I always take notice of companies that donate one percent to charity. I wanted to take it 99 percent further and donate 100 percent. We started a year ago with three different artists--Nikki Farquharson, Evan Melnyk, and L.A. design firm Ashkahn--and asked them to donate one shirt design. We screen the designs ourselves onto 100-percent organic shirts made in the U.S. and sell them online for $20. All $20 goes to Plant-It 2020. For every dollar donated, the non-profit plants, maintains, and protects one tree. We've helped plant over 1,000 trees so far, which is like a mini forest.
Are you going to do another series?
We're going to launch new designs with a new charity this month. A friend of mine teaches at the High Tech High Media Arts Center in San Diego, and I asked if I could work with his class. I went twice a week for about a month and worked with the students on this project, asking them each to create a design using one color and themed around "the future." We got 50 designs from the 50 students and will print and sell one from each class, with the money going back to support the school.

Baggu is the result of a mother-daughter collaboration to make a dent in reducing the use of plastic bags. Their reusable bags are on sale at <a href="http://baggubag.com/">baggubag.com</a>.
Baggu is the result of a mother-daughter collaboration to make a dent in reducing the use of plastic bags. Their reusable bags are on sale at baggubag.com.
What other products are you working on?
I'm working with Mike Giles at Furni, a furniture shop based in Montreal whose forte is working with wood. We may do a clock with a built-in music player with them. We're also going to do a collaboration with Baggu, a company featured in the book. I'm really interested in pillowcases and sheets, too.
Will these be associated with a charity as well?
There will definitely be a give-back element to all of them.
Anything else on the horizon?
We're launching a web series in April. It's a passion project of mine, a documentary series about my 90-year-old friend Kumar Pallana. We met years and years ago. I knew nothing about him except that he always had cameos in Wes Anderson's movies but then he told me stories about walking with Gandhi and performing as a juggler and plate spinner in the 40s and 50s. We took him back on the road for the series. It's a warm, heartfelt story but also very funny.
Will you do another book?
I'd love to. I want to make it into a series. I was so inspired by all the people I was meeting and reading about.
The Holiday Matinee office at The Hive
The Holiday Matinee office at The Hive
You featured 25 people and programs that you thought are "making awesome" in the first book. Were there others that didn't make the list?

I went to Palm Springs to write it and had a loose list of people and projects to include and narrowed it down from there. One that didn't make it was Tweenbots. It's a cardboard robot that is really simplistic but beautiful. It was put in the middle of Washington Square Park in New York City with a flag that had instructions for where it wanted to go. The robot only went forward so people would have to help it on its way by turning it to go in the right direction. It was a social experiment: Would you help a lost robot?

Furni was another. They way they approach design is really organic and they have such an attention to detail and craftsmanship. The Hive, where are offices are, is a great co-working space, which we actually did include. There are 35 entrepreneurs there. We host events. It's great.

Join the Discussion

Loading comments...

Latest Articles

modern backyard deck ipe wood
An angled deck transforms a backyard in Menlo Park, California, into a welcoming gathering spot.
June 24, 2016
dscf5485 1
Today, we kicked off this year’s annual Dwell on Design at the LA Convention Center, which will continue through Sunday, June 26th. Though we’ve been hosting this extensive event for years, this time around is particularly special.
June 24, 2016
under the radar renovation napa
Two designers restore a low-slung midcentury gem in Napa, California, by an unsung Bay Area modernist.
June 24, 2016
light and shadow bathroom walnut storage units corian counter vola faucet
A Toronto couple remodel their home with a special emphasis on a spacious kitchen and a material-rich bathroom.
June 24, 2016
Affordable home in Kansas City living room
In Kansas City, an architecture studio designs an adaptable house for a musician on a budget.
June 23, 2016
modern lycabettus penthouse apartment oak vertical slats office
By straightening angles, installing windows, and adding vertical accents, architect Aaron Ritenour brought light and order to an irregularly shaped apartment in the heart of Athens, Greece.
June 23, 2016
kitchen confidential tiles custom cabinetry oak veneer timber house
A modest kitchen addition to a couple’s cottage outside of Brisbane proves that one 376-square-foot room can revive an entire home.
June 23, 2016
feldman architecture 0
Each week, we tap into Dwell's Instagram community to bring you the most captivating design and architecture shots of the week.
June 22, 2016
Blackened timber Dutch home
A modern dwelling replaces a fallen farmhouse.
June 22, 2016
hillcrest house interior kitchen 3
Seeking an escape from bustling city life, a Manhattan couple embarks on a renovation in the verdant Hudson Valley.
June 22, 2016
Atelier Moderno renovated an old industrial building to create a luminous, modern home.
June 21, 2016
San Francisco floating home exterior
Anchored in a small San Francisco canal, this floating home takes its cues from a classic city habitat.
June 21, 2016
modern renovation addition solar powered scotland facade steel balcony
From the bones of a neglected farmstead in rural Scotland emerges a low-impact, solar-powered home that’s all about working with what was already there.
June 21, 2016
up in the air small space new zealand facade corrugated metal cladding
An architect with a taste for unconventional living spaces creates a small house at lofty heights with a starring view.
June 21, 2016
urban pastoral brooklyn family home facade steel cypress double
Building on the site of a former one-car garage, an architect creates his family’s home in an evolving neighborhood of Brooklyn.
June 20, 2016
Modern Brooklyn backyard studio with plexiglass skylight, green roof, and cedar cladding facade
In a Brooklyn backyard, an off-duty architect builds a structure that tests his attention to the little things.
June 20, 2016
the outer limits paris prefab home living area vertigo lamp constance guisset gijs bakker strip tablemetal panels
In the suburbs of Paris, an architect with an eco-friendly practice doesn’t let tradition stand in the way of innovation.
June 20, 2016
When a garage damaged by termites had to go, a studio emerges.
June 19, 2016
the blue lagoon iceland geothermal spa hotel water visitors
The famed geothermal spa outside Reykjavík, Iceland, is entering a major new phase—paving the way for the area’s first five-star hotel.
June 19, 2016
heaven on earth maya lin topography what is missing california academy sciences wood video
A new monograph by Rizzoli explores the memorial project by the renowned artist.
June 19, 2016
gable game austin texas cantilevered home facade windows upper level car port
For Dwell's annual issue dedicated to indoor/outdoor living. Here, we introduce you to the photographers and writers who made it happen.
June 18, 2016
Modern prefab lakeside home in Bloomingdale, New Jersey
Every week, we highlight one amazing Dwell home that went viral on Pinterest. Follow Dwell's Pinterest account for more daily design inspiration.
June 18, 2016
Rectangular bento glass table with compartments.
These top-notch projects by design students earned a spot on our honor roll.
June 18, 2016
bozley all
Jory Brigham picks up his family’s trade and takes it in unexpected directions.
June 17, 2016
The outlandish Belgian fashion designer, a member of the iconic Antwerp Six, creates a quirky pattern-filled capsule collection for the Swedish mega-retailer—with a high-tech twist.
June 17, 2016
2016 Triumph Pavilion
A creative take on the classic children's toy.
June 17, 2016
planar and simple chicago farmhouse addition kitchen mutina cabinets tiles pella window kohler faucet
A relaxed interior and radical roof make a home more sociable and energy-efficient.
June 17, 2016
up and away renovation san francisco family room richard wright painting sofa
A couple bring cohesion to an architectural mishmash in San Francisco.
June 17, 2016
new head of its class connecticut renovation summer home facade bleached cedar siding volumes glass bridge
A Connecticut home with a notable architectural legacy gets an expansive update for a family of six.
June 17, 2016
Rockefeller Center filled with cactus during the month of June.
To welcome summer, the plaza at Rockefeller Center transforms into a desert landscape.
June 16, 2016