PASSION BORN IN FLORIDA TURNS INTO INTERNATIONAL BRAND

Patti Hughes of Natural Life at the first store in Jacksonville. Photo by Bob Self/The Times Union

Patti Hughes of Natural Life at the first store in Jacksonville. Photo by Bob Self/The Times Union

Chances are you have seen Natural Life products in Nordstrom, gift stores or your surf shop. You can’t miss their free-spirited clothing, bohemian decorations and inspirational gifts…most branded positive messages. What you may not know is that Natural Life was created by Floridian Patti Hughes and although they are now an international brand, they are still headquartered in Jacksonville. 

Our mission is to make the world a better place by inspiring people to give and live happy!
— Patti Hughes, Natural Life
Natural Life Flagship Store in Jacksonville, Florida

Natural Life Flagship Store in Jacksonville, Florida

Patti Hughes, the founder, CEO, and Chief Creative Officer of Natural Life, was born in Tampa, but moved to Kansas City when she was four. While working for Hallmark Cards she was transferred back to Florida and her passion for living her best life and inspiring others to do the same was born.

At 23, I was so excited to return to Florida and begin a new chapter of my life. The Florida lifestyle definitely inspires me in my work and life! I love living a simple life enjoying the little things.
— Patti Hughes, Natural Life
One of Patti's Natural Life photos.

One of Patti's Natural Life photos.

Natural Life began in 1996 when Patti started taking inspiring photographs on the beach and selling her prints in little frames near her home in Florida.

I would take photographs of words written in the sand, adirondack chairs, my dog and whatever made me happy!
— Patti Hughes, Natural Life

Patti maintained a full time job while successfully selling her photos at craft shows. She says at the time she was just doing it to have fun. She eventually started selling at the Atlanta trade shows, quit her job and Natural Life grew from there. 

Patti says she named Natural Life for the kind of photographer she aspired to be. Although she had no formal photography training, Patti had a knack for capturing candid photos of people and children in their natural life. 

Patti's family photos featured on The Live Happy Blog at NaturalLife.com

Patti's family photos featured on The Live Happy Blog at NaturalLife.com

Patti finds inspiration all around and is particularly excited by ideas that remind her of her childhood. She says her mother’s passion to create rubbed off on her and she hopes she passes on this trait to her three daughters who all grew up in Florida.

My daughters travel with me on inspiration trips, often work in our flagship store and are interning at our wholesale offices this summer! It’s so fun working with my daughters. I love how hard they work!
— Patti Hughes, Natural Life
Patti and her three daughters.

Patti and her three daughters.

WHY DO YOU THINK FLORIDA IS FAB?

I would say the casual, laid back lifestyle….leaving the doors open in my house most of the year, never dressing up or fixing up too much, the sunshine, the beach! We love walking a ½ mile to the beach every evening after dinner with our beloved dog, Lucky!

FAVORITE FLORIDA SPOTS

My backyard mostly! But I love going to Saint Augustine, Fernandina Beach, Miami, and the Watercolor area!

Read more about Patti's story and check out the inspiring Natural Life products at www.naturallife.com