Hey Wanderer is a company founded on friendship and creativity. Owners Casey Freeman and Savannah McNeill met in 2011, waiting tables at a downtown Nashville restaurant. Savannah, a native Texan, was a former art student, new to town; Casey, who hails from Tennessee, was in nursing school.
They quickly became close, bonding over their pursuit of beauty and truth. Those two touchstones marked their first creative co-venture: a blog called Oh So Pretty the Diaries, featuring beauty tutorials, fashion posts, DIY craft tips and recipes. Savannah and Casey’s posts received broad exposure on Pinterest; at the height of Oh So Pretty’s popularity, their instructional videos were getting as many as 200,000 page views a day.
The year 2014 brought change. With the goal of assuming a more mature voice and broadening their coverage, they agreed to call the blog Hey Wanderer. Charged with putting together a DIY post, Savannah sewed a simple but luxurious kimono, which she then hand-dyed. They knew they had something special. Savannah’s design instructions never made it online. Hey Wanderer had become a fashion business.
Savannah got to work making more kimonos, which they sold at pop-up sales. When the time came to expand their production, they did so ethically, by employing members of Nashville’s large refugee community.
They expanded their reach to festivals, and continued to build their brand through the rest of 2014 and into 2015. Early that year, the launch of a Hey Wanderer Kickstarter campaign brought a new round of customers and press recognition to Hey Wanderer. Sales continued to grow. They began to explore wholesale.
Today, the women operate Hey Wanderer out of the home they share in East Nashville. Last year, their house became part of their operation: Savannah and Casey live and work on the first floor, while the second is devoted to McGavock Manor, a popular AirBNB rental that has been featured in Apartment Therapy and Domino.
ABOUT OUR NAME
The name Hey Wanderer emerged from a text conversation between Savannah and Casey as they weighed the merits of different ideas. While tossing ideas back and forth, the partners realized that they both love the classic hymn, “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” The song contains the phrase "prone to wander” – a sentiment that both women could relate to and that they believed others would, as well. But, as further lines in the song reveal, God binds his heart to us, no matter where we wander. To the company’s owners, the name Hey Wanderer is a soothing reminder to all who stray. You are understood. And you are safe here.
OUR BRAND MANIFESTO
Hey Wanderer is a call to those who are dreamers, thinkers, adventurers and believers. It’s a call to be better. We are all wanderers. We are all looking for something off the beaten path that will quench our thirst for knowledge, for being ahead, for being the best, and for living out dreams. Hey Wanderer is asking you not to settle, not to compromise, and to accept the struggle.
Behind Hey Wanderer, you can rest assured that you will find honesty, transparency and mistakes. We hope to inspire you to create, to dream, to lead, to follow, to think, to act and to embrace your path.
The truth is, we all fall on our faces, not finding what we are seeking because we are trapped by our choices to do what is easy, instead of what is right. But what is right is simple. What is right is gratifying. What is right can change the world. So, let’s the change the world together!