The company began with printed and embroidered pillows, before expanding to more cloth products like towels and napkins, and eventually to glass plates and knitted scarves. All products continue to feature the signature “state shape” design.
“I believe that the memory of the places and pastimes that shape us are worth celebrating,” Smiley says.
The memory of those symbols endures throughout the Honey+Hank catalog. For example, there is a pattern of horses on an embroidered hand towel from H+H. Look closer, and notice that each part of the horse is made up of Kentucky’s geographical outline, a “wink” to the Kentucky Derby. The “winks” continue, from a crab made up of Maines or peach filled with Georgias.
Honey+Hank itself is a wink to those who know Smiley and her family. The two monikers are the names her two children have given to their grandparents. On top of the name, Smiley continues to operate much of H+H through a familial and community orient.
“We are women-owned and women-led,” she says, “We view work through a very flexible lens since we’re all moms from Lake Highlands.”
While everything remains homegrown from the Lake Highlands community, people from around the country are starting to notice.
Recently, Honey+Hank has been featured on Good Morning America, Oprah’s Favorite Things and a number of nationwide magazines.
“The design with a wink tagline came from our original brainstorming session when we were trying to define our perfect customer,” Smiley explains, “She is a woman who prefers to go through life with a wink and a smile.”
For Smiley, the women who wink and smile through life seem to keep on supporting.