Hi! I’m Cayla Mäki-Pittman.
I make things. Sometimes I make things with other people. Right now, I’m making things at Harmless Studio, the world’s only full service vegan design firm.
Before Harmless Studio, I did lots of different things. I toured as a classical musician, was a music journalist, started a magazine, labored on an organic farm, founded the South’s first certified organic restaurant, ran a food hub, launched a grant-funded program in social impact, managed the director’s office of a leading art museum, and created the world’s largest vegan store.
Whatever I do, I do it passionately. I tend to follow my heart.
As a vegan, I’m driven to eliminate suffering. It’s a cause I’ve devoted my life to. I want to make the world a more perfect place.
Through the lens of world music and linguistics, I began a lifelong journey of trying to understand how people work, what makes them do what they do, and how I can help people be better versions of themselves.
That’s what drew me to social entrepreneurship, and later, design. I love the process of creating something new and convincing others to care about it.
Since studying interactive design at the Rhode Island School of Design, I’ve been enthralled with the power of visual communication. I love how design can speak to people in ways that words can’t, and can help people make better decisions that impact the world.
While I’m definitely a dreamer, I’m also a doer. I’ve gained a “real world MBA” through the different businesses I’ve been involved in, and through working with hundreds of business owners and managers across nearly every industry. This is experience I built upon while studying through Harvard Business School’s programs. I recognize that the forces of business need to be used for positive impact.
I’ve raised funds in partnership with the United Nations High Commission on Refugees, hosted social entrepreneurs Jessica Jackley of Kiva.org and Black Mycoskie of TOMS Shoes for speaking events, was named a 30 Under 30 young leader by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, was named a Global Social Impact Fellow by the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Social Impact Strategy, and have spoken at places like Harvard and Brown Universities on topics related to social entrepreneurship.
I currently live with my husband and business partner, and our vegan rescue dog JJ, on our beautiful home farm and studio grounds in Riverside, Rhode Island.