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the real raleigh :: charlotte smith

By 3/25/2016

Name Charlotte Camp Smith
Occupation Owner @ Union Camp Collective

What’s your sign Sagittarius
Describe your style in 3 words I don’t know! More is more? Its just me. Whatever that is! I’ve had this same aesthetic my entire life, it’s hard for me to really pin point it.

What do you collect Egads. What don’t I collect? It’s a sickness! Currently hoarding: dandelion paperweights, Turkish military belts, National Geographics, American flags, vintage cookware, folk / tramp art, antique linens and by default, a fuck ton of dust.
Favorite places to score finds for your home The majority was found at Studio 123 or on the road. Love Father & Sons. Robert Corprew is beyond good, too. If I had a bottomless bank account, Acquisitions. Their European antiques. Hubba. Hubba.

Fool proof dinner party tip Diversify the drinks, the music and the age range.
Favorite piece of clothing right now Anything that fits.

Favorite cocktail Jordan or Nicole’s Pina Colada (Bida Manda) / + Anything on (or off) the menu at Stanbury. Garrett & Carrie do toxic & delicious better than anyone in town. But I’ll get out of dodge for the painkillers at Stillwater.
Necessary extravagance/simple indulgence dinners out / fresh flowers

Your favorite 3 things in your house It changes. My house tends to be a revolving door! Today? The folk art by Miles Carpenter. The Jasper Johns Litho I found outside my old apartment in Alphabet City. And everything that’s on the wall above the fireplace. These things have soul. Hell, all of it does.

Where is the last place you traveled NYC / NC MTNS / Hillsborough
What did you bring back An empty wallet + big apple blues / vendor contacts & aggressive taxidermy / a full stomach & the hangover from hell

Favorite restaurant Mateo. Neals. Bida Manda. Stanbury. Players Retreat. // NYC – Lil Frankies. Ed’s. Lucien. Minetta. // Elsewhere – La Giostra.
What smell do you love It can’t be bottled. Old homes, bacon, confederate jasmin. a mowed lawn. Peaches. Clean boys & puppies.

One piece of advice you’d give an aspiring entrepreneur It’s not for the faint of heart! But at the end of the day, if you truly love what you do, all of the bullshit & stress will always be worth it. Really. God bless juice thats worth the squeeze! So, know yourself and know the difference.

How do you unwind What does this mean, “unwind” ?
What’s the last thing you were wrong about? How much time it takes me to leave one place and get to another. I’m terrible that way.

A book you've read more than once Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child, Louisette Bertholle, and Simone Beck.

What are you most excited about wearing over the new few months Less clothes and a tan.
Favorite place to buy clothes I’m not. Budget depleated thanks to my pretty new baby, Union Camp Collective!

What do you bring with you everywhere you go Baby powder. Sharpees. Check book. Appetite.

What’s your newest music discovery Hearing a lot of Townes Van Zandt & Guy Clark lately. Maybe a bad thing, but it’s more normal for me to re visit the old than to discover the new.

3 favorite things about your house It’s proximity to Cup A Joe, NCMA & the Fair Grounds.
What’s always in your refrigerator Dukes. Butter. Bottled Budweiser. And Leftovers

Who would you want to play you in your biopic It’d have to be a Wes Anderson. So I guess that would mean Natalie Portman, Saoirse Ronan or Gwyneth Paltrow. And if they aren’t available, Cate Blanchett would totally nail it.
Netflix obsession Chef’s Table & Mad Men

Top 3 things you attribute your success to 1. Support from friends & mentors - Steve & Trish/ Martha & Molly/ my old co-workers at Klienfeld’s who taught me how to sell 2. Good internal composition: intuition/positive attitude/ persistence 3. Love. It’s the coal that makes this train roll.

Favorite place to get coffee in Raleigh By week, Cup A Joe - regular drip or Voltaire. On Sundays, Joule. El Duderino. Can’t go wrong with a little jolt of vodka in the morning! And sometimes the only way out is to get back in.

What can you not stop thinking about Union Camp Collective! It keeps me up at night! At present, I’m brewing about how to get more folks in after hours. I’m really amped about what this summer has in store for UCC and can’t wait to collaborate with the rest of the creative community in town (and around). And. The next buying trip. Always the next buying trip. … and if its not business that’s on the mind? Pleasure.

Book you're reading right now Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry
Favorite hotel The Farm House in Stonington, Maine.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year Too many things have been paramount! I’ve learned to trust timing. To do my own bidding. That despite my will, sometimes you just can’t fit a square peg in to a round hole. To take (calculated) risks. And to love a little harder.

What surprises you about Raleigh Almost nothing anymore! And that’s a compliment. If I didn’t like where the city was going I would have stayed in New York.
What’s really important to you right now Customers. Acquiring more inventory. Friends & family, near & far. Good health.

You know you can always count on Rising tide lifts all ships. The Players Retreat. Gut feelings.
What do you like to do in your home Hang things. Move things. Avoid cleaning things.

Favorite song right now forever and always, Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5.
The farthest you have been from home Southern India with my sister.

What would you save in a fire FOILED! My house is fire – proof for this reason exactly! I kid. But listen, if dying with your treasures is good enough for Cleopatra, by damn, its good enough for me! Pyramid, baby. …But maybe I’ll keep tags on so the “estate” could make a little dough post-mortem?

follow charlotte's adventures on instagram @unioncampcollective


  1. I really like design of your blog! And Charlotte has such pretty hair! :)

  2. Best. Real Raleigh. Ever. Just knowing Charlotte Camp Smith makes me feel cooler. This (tiny) woman personifies (big) style.

  3. Charlotte, your home is amazing! I love your aesthetic and suffer from the collector's sickness as well.

  4. Charlotte is pretty much the coolest gal around...and so excited about UCC!

  5. wonderful feature. such amazing style. thanks....donna

  6. This is my fav Real Raleigh yet... so much inspiration. I'm already searching "Veuve Clicquot" on ebay for a tin to keep my kitchen utensils in.

  7. Love your style love your art love you collection.

  8. She has great style, and a wonderful sense of humor. Thanks for introducing me to Charlotte and UCC.

  9. So fun! Love this interview and her sense of joie de vivre!

  10. We love you Charlotte!!! come back to France to see us, I miss you.

  11. Love the photos and her style. Lots of greetings to you from Greece!


  12. Love everyone of her fun answers! Fabulous home and a cool chic

  13. I love love love the painting over the sofa, of the black dog looking at the blue vase. Do you know the artist's name?

  14. WOW! Just stumbled onto this post and its FANTASTIC! Love Charlotte she's such a breath of fresh air and a bundle of (great) energy! Love her house, it's stunning. Way to go!