2023 Year in Review

21 December 2023 |

As 2023 comes to a close, we thought we would look back at our year through photos. We had a fantastic year! Our year was full of new product releases, in-house events, our first tradeshow, and some beautiful custom residential projects (plus lots of studio dogs and cats, of course)!

Staff photo, January 2023

In February, we debuted two new designs in our Wood Series, our modular wall covering system. Created with the natural and sustainable materials that we value, the easy geometry and precise craftsmanship reflect the ethos of the studio. Route and Transit joined the two designs  we released in the spring of 2022, called New Angle and Gradient. The 2023 additions are our most customizable wood wall coverings yet!

White oak wood wall with horizontal lines of cork and solid wood bars. In the foreground are two white tables and red chairs

Route with solid bars in white oak

An oak wood wall with long vertical lines of inlaid cork. In front of the wall are three yellow Blu Dot wire chairs and a spiky palm plant.

Transit sans bars in white oak

In early spring, we began our composting program with Solutions. Every week, we send approximately a cubic yard of our finishing material—the edges of our commercial wall tiles that are wool felt adhered to cork with a water-based glue— to the Soilutions facility in the South Valley of ABQ. Previous this material went into the landfill. Sustainably is an important value in our studio, and we have been thrilled to work with a local company to turn our scraps into something use for our community.

A collage of the life cycle of offcut felt in our studio to the composting facility and then to dirt for gardening
The lifecycle of composted Submaterial offcuts 

In April, we launched four new acoustic panel designs with our commercial partner, FilzFelt.

“Taking advantage of the material’s inherent thickness, these playful patterns feature Submaterial’s signature on-edge detailing and curvilinear shapes. Arcade, Ion, Rise, and Velo draw inspiration from the geography and landscape of New Mexico, historical architecture, and mid-century graphic design patterning.”

Velo was featured in Interior Design Magazine’s Spring Market Tabloid.

A wall covered in acoustic felt in a tan color with vertical lines and a single soft curve per panel. There is a reception desk at the left with a plant and purple lamp, and at the right, an arched doorway and a small table and chair.
A two-tone blue felt wall installation in a restaurant. The felt wall is broken up into pill shapes of various lengths
A room with a gray felt wall. The design on the wall is three lines to create arches mirrored from the middle. In front of the wall are two poof chairs in pale blue at left and two green model cubicles and office chairs at right.
A room with a chartreuse felt wall with vertical lines that occasionally curve horizontally to create sparkles. In front of the wall is a lamp, bench, and small table with books.

In May, our coaster sets became available at the Los Poblanos Farm Shop. We are excited to have some of our home products in the beautifully curated shop at this local landmark.


The summer of 2023 was filled with lots of fun events. We hosted Women in Design NM for a networking event where attendee made their own custom panel. It is such a fun event, and we love to see the creative designs folks put together.

We also opened up our space for our annual studio sale. This a chance for local folks to purchase our extra commercial wall tiles, older designs, prototypes, tools and materials that we no longer need.

Our summer staff event was going to an Isotopes games. It is always great fun to hang out with staff and their families outside of the studio to celebrate everyones’ hard work.

Women in Design final products
Studio Sale
Summer Event

In late August, we had an opportunity to photograph at a beautiful AirBnB in Santa Fe called Casa Nopal. The home was initially built in 1980 utilizing “First Wave” passive solar energy principles. It was redesigned by the firm Paper Airplane in 2021 and was the perfect modern space to capture some of our products.

One of our favorite shots. The Ojo Wall Art installed in the living room of Casa Nopal

Our annual Open House was the last Thursday in September. It was a great evening with a studio tour by creative director David, delicious food by Wolf ‘n’ Swallow, and a beautiful sunset.

Charcuterie from Wolf ‘n’ Swallow
Visitors enjoying the evening on our patio

Submaterial was a first-time exhibitor at High Point Market, the largest furniture market in the United States, in October. We had a wonderful time introducing our studio to interior designers, retailers, and more. We installed products created with wool felt, leather, cork, and wood and shared our handmade, sustainable ethos with visitors.

Nancy, Briahnna, and David
One half of our booth

November started with us at the Doggie Dash and Dawdle, a fundraising event hosted by Animal Humane NM. We gave out felt dog toys, sold our Subwoofer calendars, and generally just hung out with sweet pups.

Thanksgiving weekend we had a booth at the New Mexican Artisan Market. We sold our home accessories, like coasters and trivets, as well as some special holidays items, and even sustainable felt ribbon! This was our second year at the market and we love being surrounded by the creative community of artists and makers.

Booth at the doggie dash
Booth at New Mexico Artisan Market

This year we designed and fabricated a lot of beautiful custom residential pieces.  Here are a few of our favorites.

Large Diade No. 2 Wall Art
48″ by 48″ Ojo Wall Art
Multi-color Lyric Divvy Screen
Wander | Pill Mirror

We had a great 2023 thanks to our amazing team, partners, clients, and YOU! We are excited to start 2024 off strong with some new product launches. See you next year!