Holi Festival ’18

Friends! I don’t want to type too much because the photos truly do all the talking. I had the absolute joy and honor to be a part of Memphis’s Indian Holi Festival. My sister and I drove out to the Indian Cultural Center & Temple. Upon arriving we were swept into the dancing and greeted with color-chalked hands. The whole day was filled with absolute joy. We danced together for hours, throwing color in the air and on each other. There were incredible performances by local dance groups as well. We didn’t want to leave!  On the way home my sister said, “I just loved that each person was covered by the beauty of color because they had been touched by others.” It really resonated with me. Community is so important; the presence of people that love you, laugh with you, challenge you, and fill your life with joy. I will never forget Holi Festival 2018. Thank you to the Indian Cultural Center & Temple for hosting this beautiful event, and thank you to everyone who welcomed my sister and me into every moment.

Learning to Celebrate Alone | Small Business Owner

 

I’ve learned and I’m learning in my own journey the leading pitfalls and leading strengths of my “success.”

When an incredible email comes or I mark a massive milestone in my work and company, I usually find myself alone.  And as I’m growing into that, I’ve learned to celebrate instead of pity myself.

Tavi Gevinson answered the question, “What is the biggest sacrifice you’ve made in starting or running your business?” – “What would otherwise have been free time, like after school or post graduation. But this is what I wanted to do with my free time, so it doesn’t feel like a sacrifice, just non traditional.”

It’s not that no one chose to spend time with me to celebrate. My work day is simply alone- I don’t have coworkers, I’m not married, and my roommates work most days out of home. (It has its benefits, TRUST me.) I think that’s been the biggest growing point. Feeling comfortable dancing alone in my room. Learning to call and text friends when something big is happening so I don’t sit there mourning that I have no one to be with. And when no one answers those texts, I’m pulling out my journal and writing what I would say to a coworker or best friend. Sometimes I go get myself a great coffee. Sometimes I let myself “off work” an hour early, and other times I don’t have time to stop- I just keep going- smiling alone!

On the day I launched my website, I dressed up, left my work at home, and headed to a favorite spot to get myself lunch. I was on cloud 9. But it’s taken so much to get there. I’m a socialite and networker by nature. People feed me, conversation energizes me, but I chose this. I chose to spend my evenings and nights editing and blogging in high school, I chose to not go to college, I chose to make this my full time job. If you also chose to work alone, in pursuit of your passions, and God blessed you with a way to have that as your job, celebrate. Plan your own parties. Learn to sit alone reading your book. Learn what makes you spring out of bed in the morning. Learn what lets you enjoy the solitude. If I can, trust me, you can. And I’m still learning. I get lost sometimes in the morning. Lost in self doubt, in purpose, and in lack of energy. Some days I’m overwhelmed with loneliness. I long to be surrounded by other people working hard with the same goals. I’ll find myself envious of those who get to pass the buck up when it’s out of their expertise or above their pay grade while I sit googling for hours. But I’m learning. I’m learning to take care of myself, to love my job through the amazing and the rough. To not beat myself down when I  have to spend the day working on taxes of website hackers instead of what’s on my actual to do list.

It’s awesome. It’s hard. Please don’t forget to celebrate. Have fun. It sounds crazy, but I think I forgot about fun. Of course I’ve had fun in the last couple years, but I don’t think I freed myself to, and I am learning because I also plan out everything else in my life, I have to plan for fun. You carry your story and your company’s story. Just cause no one else’s offered to host it, doesn’t mean there shouldn’t a party. Either let go of how “untraditional” you are, or be dragged along into your own story not having fun.  Surround yourself with friends and people that will celebrate when you give them the thumbs up.  Involve the people who ask you to!  Because TRULY, I don’t do all the work. You can ask my best friends… they usually get texts 5x a week asking for advice. I’m usually spending a couple hours a week bouncing ideas off my sister and best friend. Last week my friend came over and added the last touch to a flat-lay for a giveaway. They are all a part of this. They ground me and allow me to test ideas, ask advice, and cry about failures. My parents have walked this journey right by me. They were there when I decided each step, and have guided in every way they can.

Surround yourself with people who will celebrate with you, but don’t expect them to know when to celebrate if you don’t tell them. It’s good to learn how to ask to go get drinks, it’s okay to take yourself to lunch. Get comfortable with your “alone.” When you sit alone sipping that cup of coffee, you are having a date with the CEO, the Founder, the Intern, the Editor, and the creative behind an awesome business. That’s pretty cool.

Joshua Stephans | Web Designer

Hey friends! I wanted to make a short post to introduce my amazing web designer–who also happens to be my brother-in-law. This is Joshua Stephans!

Josh was born and grew up partially in Chicago before moving to Orlando. He transitioned to Tennessee in 2012 for a BA in Digital Media Communications at Union University. As well as gaining experience through classes, designing local coffee shop, concert, and school posters, he met his best friend and later wife at UU–my beautiful and talented sister, Elizabeth. Before they even dated, Josh and I would spend hours pushing each others’ creative boundaries and ideas. He was the first person to believe in Dancing Through Memphis, my very first passion project that ended up being a 5 month enterprise. His zeal for culture, stories, and craftsmanship never ceases to inspire me.

Elizabeth and Josh married in August of 2016 and having another creative in the family has been such a blessing. Josh is a graphic + web designer and overall creative based in Memphis, TN. He’s been a constant supporter, fellow dreamer, and best friend.

He helped me edit and build pieces of my current website during the months of 2016 + 2017, however as time went on, I started realizing how different my vision and brand had become. The idea of him being my web designer for a whole new site was exciting and terrifying.

Creative conflict can be a make-or-break situation. Josh has been an incredible listening ear, but also matched my dream with healthy debate. He has challenged me to keep things simple and clear, with the message that if you claim to be a storyteller, your story is not the one being focused on. I’ve radically changed my mindset on how to communicate my services and passion through his incredible design and wisdom. There was some silence over phone calls, clashing of vision, and frustration as expected. I’ve learned to fight for what I really believe is priority, and how to discuss things in a healthy way. 

Since building my first website on my own, I have dreamed of hiring a designer. Those who have fought tooth and nail with wordpress, wix, and squarespace…you feel me. I’ve been in tears, on the phone for hours, and still ended up with something far from my vision. It was SO frustrating. Josh allowed me to dream big and draw out my ideas on a paper. He literally made a website from those ridiculous chicken scratch sketches.

I’m beyond excited to launch this face to Emily Frazier Creative. It is a true work of art. Josh has put in time, creativity, research, and endless design. I am so thankful! It’s hard to hire a designer when you technically can DIY it, but this was money spent so well. I am so thankful I invested in his work.

JOSH’S LINKS

WEB: JOSHUASTEPHANS.COM

INSTA: INSTAGRAM.COM/JOSHUASTEPHANS

Stay tuned for Thursdays website launch at www.emily-frazier.com and the exciting giveaway on instagram.com/emilyjfrazier 

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 businesses 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 a corporation.

As a small business owner, I believe that 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 using or would use. I personally messaged the makers/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 a starting point. So here it is: a simple, straight-forward guide to local gift-giving. So I hope this inspires you to 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 ORNAMENT 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 STUDIO

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 ORNAMENT 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 STUDIO

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 STUDIO

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 ORNAMENT 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