When asked to explain how We the Birds came to be, Natalie and Sarah Knowlton exchange considering looks. The Knowltons, who are often mistaken for twins, have arrived at their brand-new, still-being-unwrapped headquarters in coordinated athleisure. Natalie, who has a degree in accounting and finance, has tied her hair back, accentuating her sharp cheekbones. Even sitting still, her hands flutter with energy. Sarah, a former web designer at Neiman Marcus, is more serene. She changes her hair like most people change shoes; currently it’s choppy and bone-white. The sisters live in step with each other, sharing their home, their business and their brand. They even shared their spot on D Magazine’s 2017 list of most stylish people.
After a moment, Natalie simply offers, “We come from a creative family.”
Sarah nods. “And I guess the story of We the Birds is the story of our upbringing. We moved 17 times when we were growing up. We’ve lived all over the world: Venezuela, Australia, Singapore, Texas, Louisiana … back then we called ourselves birds because we were always in flight.”
As a business, We the Birds dodges a straightforward definition. It’s a brand and an aesthetic built around all things beautiful. But describing them as either a lifestyle blog or as macaron peddlers wouldn’t do We the Birds justice. They’re both, plus whatever else they decide to do.
“We found a way to blend our crazy interests into one brand,” Natalie says. “That’s not easy, so we defined our roles early on. Sarah just wants to make pretty things. I say, sure, we can do that but we also need to make money.”
Sarah nods. “She’s sales-minded. I’m not. Thank god we have each other. We check each other along the way.”