Bozwell + Lily | Memphis Maker + Pop-Up Shop

My friend Ben launched his brand Bozwell + Lily in early 2017. He is a passionate guy, driven by creative community and grit. I’m glad to have people like him here, with vision for Memphis to embrace the makers and creators. He’s created such a beautiful collection of items for the brand. I’m loving the pieces he keeps adding; it’s so evident Ben puts so much thought into each item.

He spent time this month designing, opening, and running the Brick and Mortar pop-up shop in Downtown, Memphis. Read more about it from Ben’s perspective: http://www.bozwellandlily.com/new-blog/2017/10/15/friends-and-family-email

Wishing I could have spent more time sipping Lowfi’s freakin’ incredible coffee, and chillin’ with Ben and Memphis’s best people. Check out a few shots I got of Bozwell + Lily’s great setup.

 

Proud of you, Ben. Keep killin’ it. Memphis is soaking it up!

SHOP MEMPHIS | SHOP SMALL BUSINESS

NOTE: All of these products are sold by local or small businesses; Almost all of them are local Memphis businesses, and if not, they are small business online. I will include all of the links below! (cause I know you are gonna want them!!)

When I shop for friends, I really love to get them something unique. Sometimes, though, I find myself in that sudden crunch-time mode before Christmas or a birthday, and in those times the easiest route is going online to Amazon or dropping by Target. These are all chain places that have awesome designers and fantastic little gifts, but lack the person behind the product. To me it’s incredibly special and personal to get something from another maker. I know that their hands have touched it and there’s a unique reason behind each piece. It’s usually higher quality when each piece has been individually checked by its maker, and that it’s been created, priced, and sold by a person, not cooperation.

As a small business owner, I believe that a good, personalized service is worth the extra money that you spend. Being able to tuck in a business card and explain why you wanted to give someone this specific item and who they supported by getting this gift–is so special and cool. Each item below is something I either am currently, or would use. I personally messaged/collected the pieces below. They did not pay to be featured. GUYS! I just love the faces and hands behind their brands. I’m honored to live in a city growing in makers. My goal this Christmas is to gift smaller, more precious gifts to my friends and family. To support the story tellers and artists.

The main goal of this blog post is to give people are starting point. So here it is, a simple, straight-forward guide to local gift-giving. So I hope this inspires you support local and small. <3  All in time for small business Saturday!

 

 

COFFEE: REVERB COFFEE

http://myreverbcoffee.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/reverbcoffee/?hl=en

RED MUG: CHOOSE 901 (pop up shop)

Save The Date: Choose901 Holiday Pop Up Shop 2017

https://www.instagram.com/choose901/?hl=en

WALL ART: KATHERINE GEORGE ART

https://www.etsy.com/shop/KatherineGeorgeArt

IG: https://www.instagram.com/katherinegeorgeart/?hl=en

COFFEE: REVERB COFFEE

http://myreverbcoffee.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/reverbcoffee/?hl=en

MEMPHIS ORDAMENT AND MUG: SIGNET SEALED

https://www.signetsealed.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/signetsealed/?hl=en

COFFEE: REVERB COFFEE

http://myreverbcoffee.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/reverbcoffee/?hl=en

HAND MADE MUGS: BRUKIE STUIDO

https://www.etsy.com/shop/brukiestudio

IG: https://www.instagram.com/brukiestudio/?hl=en

 

CANDLE (Fraiser Fir) + MONEY CLIP: ASPEN BAY

IG: https://www.instagram.com/aspenbay/?hl=en

BANDANA (Cactus print): BOZWELL + LILY

http://www.bozwellandlily.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/bozwellandlily/?hl=en

LOOSE LEAF TEA: MAGGIE PHARM

http://www.maggiespharm.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/maggiespharm/?hl=en

 

MEMPHIS ORDAMENT AND MUG: SIGNET SEALED

https://www.signetsealed.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/signetsealed/?hl=en

 

CUPS: BREIANA DESIGNS

https://www.instagram.com/breiana_design/?hl=en

WREATH HANGING: RED HEAD THREADS

https://www.etsy.com/shop/Redheadandherthreads?ref=search_shop_redirect

IG https://www.instagram.com/redhead_threads/?hl=en

COFFEE: REVERB COFFEE

http://myreverbcoffee.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/reverbcoffee/?hl=en

HAND MADE MUGS: BRUKIE STUIDO

https://www.etsy.com/shop/brukiestudio

IG: https://www.instagram.com/brukiestudio/?hl=en

BANDANA (Cactus print): BOZWELL + LILY

http://www.bozwellandlily.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/bozwellandlily/?hl=en

MEMPHIS CARDS + CANDLES (mistletoe + white tea and ginger): FALLING INTO PLACE

https://www.fallingintoplace.net/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/fallingintoplaceshop/?hl=en

WREATH HANGING: RED HEAD THREADS

https://www.etsy.com/shop/Redheadandherthreads?ref=search_shop_redirect

IG https://www.instagram.com/redhead_threads/?hl=en

 

EVERYONE PHOTO FEATURED:

WALL ART: KATHERINE GEORGE ART

https://www.etsy.com/shop/KatherineGeorgeArt

IG: https://www.instagram.com/katherinegeorgeart/?hl=en

COFFEE: REVERB COFFEE

http://myreverbcoffee.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/reverbcoffee/?hl=en

HAND MADE MUGS: BRUKIE STUIDO

https://www.etsy.com/shop/brukiestudio

IG: https://www.instagram.com/brukiestudio/?hl=en

CUPS: BREIANA DESIGNS

https://www.instagram.com/breiana_design/?hl=en

BANDANA (Cactus print): BOZWELL + LILY

http://www.bozwellandlily.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/bozwellandlily/?hl=en

MEMPHIS CARDS + CANDLES (mistletoe + white tea and ginger): FALLING INTO PLACE

https://www.fallingintoplace.net/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/fallingintoplaceshop/?hl=en

WREATH HANGING: RED HEAD THREADS

https://www.etsy.com/shop/Redheadandherthreads?ref=search_shop_redirect

IG https://www.instagram.com/redhead_threads/?hl=en

LOOSE LEAF TEA: MAGGIE PHARM

http://www.maggiespharm.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/maggiespharm/?hl=en

CANDLE (Fraiser Fir) + MONEY CLIP: ASPEN BAY

IG: https://www.instagram.com/aspenbay/?hl=en

MEMPHIS ORDAMENT AND MUG: SIGNET SEALED

https://www.signetsealed.com/

IG: https://www.instagram.com/signetsealed/?hl=en

RED MUG: CHOOSE 901 (pop up shop)

Save The Date: Choose901 Holiday Pop Up Shop 2017

https://www.instagram.com/choose901/?hl=en

Guest Writer | Marissa Kizer | Productivity for a Meaningful Life

INTRODUCING THE LOVELY MARISSA KIZER. SHE IS THE SWEETEST LADY TO HAVE IN YOUR LIFE. I’M HONORED TO KNOW HER AND RECEIVE HER KINDNESS AS MUCH AS I DO. SHE’S ALL ABOUT ORGANIZATION AND CREATIVITY.

So we chatted a bit about what she would like to share, and I gave her the reigns to my blog for this post! <3 We met up to take photos, and I just love yellow on her! Everything from here on is written by Marissa! ENJOY!

One of the most helpful resources in shaping my understanding of work is learning about the Montessori approach to education.  For children in a Montessori environment, work isn’t a necessary evil; it’s their life’s purpose. Their work is the foundation for living in community and developing as emotionally healthy, socially responsible, peaceful human beings. The work can range from tying their shoes and working with the Pythagorean theorem to reconciling with a friend and waiting patiently for their turn on the swing, and it is all viewed as purposeful and communal.

Their work also requires a high level of preparation—both external and internal. One key principle of Montessori education is the “prepared environment.” Montessori teachers prepare the classroom so that everything is in order and the children have access to what they need. Montessori guides must also prepare themselves internally so they may guide the child into a peaceful frame of mind conducive for working. As adults, we also need physical and emotional preparation in order to work well and use our work to benefit our communities.

Emotional Preparation

Hope

Setting goals and pursuing them are foundational to living a productive life. But if you’re mired in depression, grief, and trauma, just getting to the point of being able to set goals and not think they’re completely pointless can be a long process.  Setting goals and visions are incredibly vulnerable tasks that require digging deep into what you truly want and who you truly are—and that inevitably means coming to terms with not having everything you want and not being exactly who you want to be. 

In Rising Strong, Brene Brown writes, “In my work, I’ve found that moving out of powerlessness, and even despair, requires hope. Hope is not an emotion: it’s a cognitive process—a thought process made up of what researcher C.R. Snyder called the trilogy of ‘goals, pathways, and agency.’ Hope happens when we can set goals, have the tenacity and perseverance to pursue those goals, and believe in our own abilities to act.”

 

Meaning

In Man’s Search For Meaning, Viktor Frankl describes a therapy method he developed and used during his time in a concentration camp to keep people from succumbing to the despair and tortures they were experiencing. He believed in the ability of people to be resilient provided they have a sense of meaning and a belief that they have something to live for. He required each person to think of something they wanted to stay alive for—whether the possibility of reuniting with a loved one or, as for Frankl himself, the possibility of writing a book about their experiences and using them to help others. 

The principles of his method–called logotherapy– are essentially making sure each day includes:

  • something to do,
  • someone to love,
  • and some form of beauty to behold.

Work, community, and art. He viewed work as an essential component for a meaningful life. As creatives, a central part of our work is creating beauty for all of us to behold, as well as appreciating what others make. That’s part of the “someone to love” aspect of it—being in community and abiding by the principle of “community over competition.” When we are diligent about guarding our serenity and seeking out work, community, and creativity, I’m convinced that we really can experience a sense of meaning that can spur us on to even more amazing work.

Physical Preparation

Productivity also requires a lot of physical preparation, and this is the part that I think differs widely for each person. I’m constantly tweaking my calendars, planners, and notebooks to make them work best for me, but here are a few of my favorite ways to keep up with work, school, personal projects, and activities I have throughout the week.

Handwritten planners. I have a planner for personal life where I keep up with each week’s events, deadlines, and to-dos. I also have a work planner that mainly consists of social media plans and work events. Being able to write everything out makes me feel organized, but I typically transfer everything to digital calendars to keep up with deadlines.

Notebooks. I have a different notebook for pretty much every section of my life. Each class, each job, and each project has a separate notebook. It takes up more room but makes it so much easier to keep track of each area of my life. I brainstorm and take notes in my notebooks, but my favorite part is making lists.

Lists. I tend to make a master list every month or so with all the to-dos I can think of, organized by category like School, Home Repair, Blog, Work, Doctor Appointments, etc. Then generally on Mondays I make a weekly master list with goals, deadlines, and anything I want to get done that week. That usually consists of about 30 items. Then, each day when I sit down to get work done, I make a daily list of the most important 5-10 items to finish that particular day.

The Done List. One of my favorite new productivity hacks is the Done List. Every day I simply write “Done” underneath my to-do lists and write down tasks I do during my work period. It makes me feel productive and serves as a catch-all for little tasks like finally replying to a text as well as bigger tasks like choosing fonts or color schemes for a design project. It makes me feel more productive while also giving me flexibility and an opportunity to celebrate each task I complete.

Digital planning. I find digital planning most useful for keeping up with deadlines because I can set alarm reminders and back up my physical calendars and lists.

 

Creative | In the Studio of Georgia Mud

A few weeks ago, Georgia invited me into her studio to capture some behind-the-scenes of her working. The room she works in has actually worn many hats. It was her nursery, then a playroom, her brother’s, and now her studio. Georgia’s brother was the initial thrower of the fam. But after playing around on the wheel, Georgia “completely fell in love with it.”

She is a ceramics major at Arkansas State now. The reality of an arts major is often that you don’t even touch your passion till you’ve covered gen-eds, and the basics of art. I love that she has a wheel and kiln at home, so it’s not years before she molds clay. She has been able to build her own business, called Georgia Mud. She actually got to reinvest last year’s profits in a bigger and stronger kiln.

Spending time watching Georgia on the wheel reminds me of the sheer bliss I feel behind the camera. The relaxed focus she had, while her hands were working and her mind wandering. She talked a lot about this room being a safe place she goes to when she is upset, stressed, or processing.

 

She started by cutting off clay from a large block. Then began pounding it. The process takes muscle as she beat out air bubbles and imperfections. In the Bible, Isaiah talks about God being a potter, us being clay. (Isaiah 64:8) And I’ve always compared it to the wheel and shaping part, but beating out the imperfections is something that resonates with me in my life. Before He can even start shaping us, there are sin habits and comforts that we must die to, and give up. Before that, he can’t even start.

 

What has the Lord taught you through this process of pottery?

“Every part of pottery points back to the gospel.”

“Reclaimed clay, everything that comes off my hands, this nastiness, it all goes in this bucket, and it smells bad. Yep. God knows we smell bad. So I take that clay, dry it out, and it goes through a purification process. Takes a lot of pressure, physical pressure. Then it turns into clay with some imperfections. And then more pressure. There are areas of imperfections all of us have, and it takes us going through so much pressure to pull those out.

Then after throwing and shaping, the drying process is days long. Parts literally die, crumble off; sometimes it cracks, and you have to start all over again. If it gets through that, it then goes into an actual fire…”

 

What’s your favorite part of pottery?

“My favorite part about pottery is how intimate it is. It’s all over you. Under my fingernails, arms, all over my hands. We are all over God. We stink, yet He has his hands all over us, making us beautiful, shaping us.

A lot of things in life are the cycle. Everything on the wheel is repetitive. All of pottery is this huge transformation. Just like life in Christ; it makes scripture real”

 

What’s one of the biggest misconceptions about pottery?

“That it all happens on the wheel. That’s just a step of it all, really. I love that part enough to do everything else.” Hearing about the sheer process one mug goes through is shocking. Days of drying, hours on hours of baking, so much dedication and energy.

 

My favorite part about Georgia’s studio is that everything is in reach of her chair. And her chair? It’s a dentist’s chair! It’s just so cool to see her space. There is something so special about your first place. How everything is where you need it, it’s messy, it’s quirky, make-shift, but it’s yours.

She made a makeshift table top to beat a large piece of clay. “If there are any air bubbles, it will explode. It’s only happened to me once when I was throwing something really big. It’s more likely to happen when it’s thick.”

There is, in fact, a method to beating. And that method creates spiral pattern in the clay. It’s beautiful!

 

 

I learned that the clay naturally wants to spin away from the wheel. So the faster you push the pedal, the harder it gets to keep it in. I just can’t help but pull analogies, too! We spend so much of our lives fighting the Potter, fighting His will. Trying to fling ourselves off the wheel. He’s patient, He’s gracious, as He hones us in, reminds us of His plan, continues to care and form- protecting us from the reality of being out of His will.  The faster our lives become, the harder it is to spend close and intimate time with the Lord.

 

While on the wheel, molding a large piece, she explained, “It finds its shape for you. Did you see how it was wobbling around, and now that I made it tall and pulled it up, it’s happy spinning?”I freakin love that! I loved watching it happen. It was shaking, fighting her, and then it was dancing, happy. It is harder to throw large pieces. I could tell the skill and attention it took Georgia, going quiet at times to focus.

 

Being in such a hand-crafted art, it’s hard to price yourself. Each piece takes hours of  dedication, care, and energy. When so much is factory made, sold cheaper in bulk, the unique pieces by local artists are seen as “expensive” and “overpriced”. Educating your customers is priority, helping them understand the process and value to your products. Don’t lose heart, don’t undersell yourself!

I was reading Share Your Work by Austin Kleon before hunkering down and writing this post. The chapter was called “It’s About the Process, Not the Product,” talking all about sharing pieces of your process. As humans we are interested in what other humans are doing, not just the end product. I value Georgia’s work even more, being able to step in and hear her heart and passion behind it, how much it freaking takes to get one piece made. I hope you do, too!

Georgia and I have a similar story. One of the biggest questions I wrestled with before pursuing photography full time was, “Is this what God really wants for me, or is it the easiest route?” Sometimes it feels wrong that it comes so easy, because so often his desires are so against our human nature that it takes force to be in His will. I learned that He gives passions for a reason though. Georgia was voicing my exact thoughts, “Does God want for me what I want? Honestly, it was all falling together so fast. Like, is this too easy? You know, like a lot of people don’t know what they want to do at our age, they aren’t able to be doing it already.” The Lord has blessed both of us with supportive families and available resources and natural passion to pursue a craft. I’m so thankful!

I’m so honored to have had the time in Georgia’s studio, to get to know her even more. I love hearing how she has grown in her art and walk with the Lord. She has a way of expressing herself on the wheel; I could tell she has a formed style and preference of throwing. I could feel the peace that was in that lamplit space. I left feeling energized, calm, and inspired. After our time, she called me about a question, and we ended up chatting for another half hour about growing in our business while protecting our creative processes.

ALL this to say: Support your local potter, friends! Please follow the links below to shop, hear, and learn more about Georgia Mud!

WEBSITE: www.georgiamudpottery.com

INSTAGRAM: www.instagram.com/georgiamud/

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/georgiamudpottery/

You can find her work sold at Old Town Hall & Cafe and Baumers Foot Wear in Memphis, TN.

Meet Georgia! SEPTEMBER 30th.: Go see Georgia’s work, live demonstrations, and other Memphis artists! Event at More Than Words in Germantown, Tn.

Left is one of her favorite pieces, right is the bucket of unclaimed clay. 

EFC | FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions

HOW OLD WERE YOU WHEN YOU STARTED PHOTOGRAPHY?

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I was 12 when I picked up my first camera, trailing behind my big sister with her big camera. I started pursuing photography as more than a hobby sophomore year of high school when a friend handed me some cash after we frolicked around a field taking her senior photos. As I grew in the time I spent with my camera by my side, my friends and family starting seeing more potential than even I saw! And then my life changed forever (age 16) when a couple trusted me to take photos at their wedding that same year, 2014. And it’s been a whirlwind since! Booking through word of mouth and my portfolio circulating through platforms like my blog and Instagram.

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WHERE ARE YOU FROM?

I grew up interacting with so many cultures and peoples. I spent my childhood by the Mediterranean Sea speaking Turkish and eating lot of veggies. I currently live in “the City of Blues”, Memphis, TN, where you can find me in any of the coffee shops within 10 miles of my apartment.  I travel as often as I can. Every new place I visit, when someone asks me this question, it usually stumps my heart. I never fully felt like I fit in Turkey, nor do I feel as though America is my home. I don’t really know where I am from but I cling to the truth of Philippians 3:20.

“ BUT OUR CITIZENSHIP IS IN HEAVEN. AND WE EAGERLY AWAIT A SAVIOR FROM THERE, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST.”

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BABY EMILY IN TURKEY

 Why photography? 

Simply put: it’s just me. There is something pure magic about stopping time. In such a visual world, I love that I can spark emotion, capture moments, and deliver work that allows my clients to cherish their memories. I love the responsibility I have to capture something that won’t ever happen again. And I love that I am growing and getting better each day I pick up my camera.

I know I will never stop taking photos because, like I said, it is truly a part of who I am. I think in colors and composition. I process life and events through photos. I pray I will always have the opportunity to empower, encourage, and evoke. I don’t think photos should only be happy. I choose to pick up my camera to be a communicator. A photo is worth a thousand words. I don’t control your interpretation of an image, and that is a beautiful thing.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE PRODUCT/BRAND PHOTOGRAPHY?

Community over competition is what I am all about, and I never want to lose that. I love coming alongside other entrepreneurs and creatives, empowering them in their own goals and dreams.

If I didn’t have microphone anxiety I would absolutely love to be an inspirational speaker. That being said, I love to be a one-on-one catalyst. My passion is to set goals, write mission statements, and make things happen. There is a world full of people with ideas scribbled on napkins and journals, but they are never challenged or given the tools to make their dreams grow into a reality. I want to be there with the passionate individual and help breathe life into their visions, to be their one-on-one inspirational speaker and tool kit.

You need QUALITY photos to launch your product/brand. Photos that capture you as the maker and creator, photos that show off your products in a lifestyle way. That’s what I am about.

WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST DREAMS?

1. I want to be a humanitarian photographer. I want to use my skills and heart to serve the nations, shedding light on the culture, joy, as well as hurt in cultures and nations. I want to serve with those being a voice for the voiceless. I don’t want to just photograph someone. I want to dignify them, empower them.

2. Community Creative Space. My brother-in-law and I have dreamed of starting a community building/studio for creatives in our city/a city. A place where photographers, designers, videographers, illustrators, entrepreneurs come together to work alongside each other at community desk areas. Turning screens around, brainstorming big ideas on white boards and windows. Community over competition at its very finest!

3. I would love to write or commission someone to write a biography on my parents’ story, covering from the day they met to current day. From the date my mom accidentally spilled a whole glass of ice water on my dad; to the day my dad asked her parents’ blessing in marriage, communicating “You won’t watch your grandkids grow up. We want to move overseas”; to their around-the-world trip, straight to living in Turkey for 20 years. Their legacy inspires me daily, and I think it’s a book that would impact so many.

HOW DO YOU TRAVEL SO OFTEN?

After growing up overseas, I’ve got the travel bug strong. Thankfully my TCK (third culture kids) friends still live all over the world AND are getting married. So a lot of my travels are to visit them/shoot their weddings. I am continuing networking and one of my goals by 2019 is to have almost 80% destination weddings/out of Memphis weddings. SO, where ever you are, hit me up!

As for personal trips, as with most things that are luxury and not necessity, you give up a lot to have something else you want. I don’t go to movies, concerts, and festivals. I try to stay frugal on clothes and stay conservative on how much camera gear I invest in and keep. ALL in order to save for long trips. I love LIVING as long as I can in a place I visit to truly experience the feel, culture, people, set up, and way of life.

WHAT DOES YOUR WEEK/DAY LOOK LIKE?

Honestly, it’s different every week, but in general my to-do lists look a lot like a scatter-brained 15 year old with priority issues. Every week I log about 40-50 hours of work split into about 5 categories (listed from most time to least time spent): Editing, Shooting, Bookkeeping, Media (blog/Insta/website/fb), and Client Care (emails, meetings, calls, etc.).

You can find me working in coffee shops (especially Avenue Coffee, our local spot open till 12a.m.), in airports, on planes, in the car on road trips, on trains, (have yet to work on a boat), in my bedroom at my standing desk, anytime I can outside on my patio, on the floor at a friend’s house, or pretty much anywhere that week has me. I live on the go as much as I can, relishing new spaces that inspire me and help me create in a way that keeps me getting better and better. So to answer that question is kind of hard, but let’s just say I work as hard as I can wherever I am. 

WHAT EQUIPMENT DO YOU USE?

My main camera body is the Canon 6D (and my second is canon 6D) accompanied by the Canon 35mm 1.4f prime, and Sigma 50mm 1.4f prime. Every once in awhile you will catch me traveling with the 24-70mm 2.8f. For low light situations you can find me using the trusty Canon 600x flash. I edit on my 15 inch MacBook Pro with Adobe Lightroom. I stand behind Photo Mechanic and BlogStomp as lifesavers, as well. I use Mailchimp for my monthly newsletter, as well. My favorite app is TOGGL for self-employed folks like myself.

WHO DESIGNED YOUR LOGO AND WEBSITE?

My AWESOME brother-in-law through KINGSMAN CREATIVE. Seriously the bomb. Check out his work! He’s committed to taking the time to build something that’s inspired by you.