Vol. 3 Handmade

Page 1



We are inspired by the ground-breaking, the risk-taking, the unconventional, and often the less celebrated.

Wabi-sabi is a Japanese term, derived from Buddhist philosophy, that encompasses an aesthetic of beauty which values the incomplete, impermanent, and imperfect. This philosophy acknowledges a reality that “nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect”. It is the acceptance of the passage of time, simplicity, and authenticity. Perhaps, the absence of wabi-sabi explains our society’s melancholic embrace of the past and fever-pitched restlessness with each algorithmic breakthrough in technology. We romanticize the era of the Jetson but fear the loss of our humanity.

We share the narratives of women making noise in their place of business, community and beyond. We are the B SIDE Collective. kinda classy. kinda hood. all business.

In this issue, Handmade, we evoke wabi-sabi with the celebration of meticulous, human handcrafted apothecary goods, adornments, wood, clay, paper and fiber wares, and delights that may not be fully completed, finished, or perfect. The purposeful void of mass-production, outsourcing and automation breathes life and beauty unparalleled. We are proud to share Richmond, Virginia’s handmade maker community.

bsidecollective.com · hello@bsidecollective.com ·






14 Ashley Hawkins · Studio Two Three 16 Noelle Parent · Gifted 18 Brittanny Chanel Deraffele · Brunch Market + Sun and Selene

70 Nga Nguyen-Weaver · Woodland Heights Studio 70 Carren Clarke McAdoo · Woodland Heights Studio 71 Molly Sanyour · Molly Sanyour Ceramics 72 Carrie Walters · Paper Rose Co. 74 Unicia R. Buster · Unicia Buster 74 Laura Marr · Flourish Creative

MODERN APOTHECARY 25 26 27 28 29 30

Tricia Boor · Apothec Kate Jennings with Isabel Lee · Na Nin Suzy Brockmann · Pan Natural Vanessa McCauley · Sweet Cheeks All Natural Laura Baum · Laura’s Botanicals Bethany Frazier · Maven Made




38 38 38 38 40 42 44

Cinthya Cuba de Zabal · Heartily by Nina Zabal Rashana Miller · Free Maiden Susan Elnora · Susan Elnora Claire Berry · Clarissa B Design Co. Molly Virginia Campbell · Molly Virginia Made Hali Emminger · Hechizo Britta Kelley · Kamili

FOR THE HOME 52 54 56 58 60 62 63



Wendy Umanhoff · Umanoff Design Jillian Carmine · Jillian Rene Decor Erin Till & Sarah Grinter · S.G. Woodworks Johannah Willsey · Phoenix Handcraft Margaret Hunter · Tulip & Bear Emily White · Richmond Tintype Co. Willie Anne Wright

FIBER & WEARABLES 82 83 84 85 86 86 86 88 89 90 92

Elizabeth Few · Elizabeth Few Studio Bella Weinstein · HandyMa’am Goods Lisa Hutchinson · Top Stitch Kate Bruce · KB Stitches Erin McRoberts · Awl Snap Stewart Allen · LeatherWoolLinen Ali Mohr-Ferguson Martin · AMFM Store Mel Calabro · Open Studio Aimee Richardson Sulser · Little Fox Yarn Emmie McMackin · Emerald & Fig Justine McFarland · Tupelo Fiber & Design

CRAF T DELIGHTS 98 Meredyth Archer · MOTHER Shrub 99 Elizabeth Crowley, Peanut Kempe and Ann Kamps Taliaferro · Three Sisters Cheese Straws 100 Keya Wingfield · Candy Valley Cake Co. 06 Find Your Perfect Maker Space 32 Winter Solstice Astrology Guide 46 Gift Guide 64 Studio Pets 94 Recommended Reading 102 #HelpMe · The Scoop with Bethany Silva Miller 103 In Herr Space · Emily Herr 104 Where to Shop



Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick Founder @bsidecollectivemedia bsidecollective.com hello@bsidecollective.com

Sarah Der Director of Photography @sarahanneder sarahderphotography.com hello@sarahderphotography.com

Sarah Culclasure Art Director @riddledesignco riddledesignco.com sarah@riddledesignco.com

Raven Smith Volume 3 Illustrator @ravensmith ravensmithart.com ravenillustrated@gmail.com

ADVERTISING Charlotte Rudolph ads@bsidecollective.com

Email addresses are provided for professional correspondence only. Views, products and statements expressed are not necessarily opinions of the founder or contributors to the B SIDE Collective. Copyright Š2018 All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part of any text, photography, or illustration without written permission is prohibited. Statements are not necessarily opinions of the B SIDE Collective founder or contributors.



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Kim Brundage Kim Brundage Photography

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STUDIO TWO THREE · Ashley Hawkins BRUNCH MARKET + SUN & SELENE · Brittanny Chanel Deraffele GIFTED · Noelle Parent


words Elizabeth Cogar

On a typical day at Studio Two Three (S23), a nonprofit community art studio in Scott’s Addition, executive director Ashley Hawkins is crazy busy. Meeting, planning and organizing: that’s what most nonprofit leaders do. But nowhere else in this region or beyond is an arts professional like Ashley facilitating the work of more than 100 artists who use her space to run creative businesses, make printed materials and artwork, explore new media, and improve on existing skills. There’s just nowhere else like it. A Richmond native and graduate of Maggie Walker Governor’s School, Ashley says she always thought she’d do something artrelated. “I started out thinking I would be a professional artist, and changed my mind when I stopped painting, started printing, and saw the community potential.” After graduating from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of the Arts, Ashley and three friends continued their artmaking in studio number 23 (thus the name Studio Two Three) at Plant Zero in Manchester. They had a tiny workspace, where they held two or three small workshops a year, as well as a few pop-up exhibitions. As time passed, Ashley’s friends went in different directions, but she stayed on. To reach a larger slice of the community, Ashley moved the studio to 1617 W. Main Street in 2010. The location put them in a central spot near William A. and Pamela Kiecker Royall’s Try-Me art and education space, the Page Bond Gallery, Reynolds Gallery and the Visual Arts Center of Richmond. “We were able to make more and serve more,” Ashley says. Realizing she needed the tools to run a growing community nonprofit, Ashley returned to VCU to earn her master’s in public administration, with an emphasis on nonprofit management. Her reasoning for going the nonprofit route with the studio was simple: she wanted to keep it affordable for artists, and she needed grant funding and donations to do that. “Our bar of entry is lower than most places, with our monthly memberships starting at $50,”

Ashley explains. “That really helps remove the up front capital expense which can make it difficult for artists to get going.” Having outgrown their Fan District location, and with help from generous donors, Studio Two Three scaled up to 6,500 square feet in Scott’s Addition in 2015. The new digs offered much more—a storefront for selling Richmond merchandise, class space, a lounge, kitchen, t-shirt presses, a letterpress, private studios, a darkroom, and proximity to lots of activity in the neighborhood. Plus, it had a place to park their new S23 To-Go truck, a mobile print studio. “The art and community building elements are almost always side-by-side,” Ashley says. “We’ve made room for collaboration on social justice issues, using art as a tool for real world change.”

“Here, people are seriously making things… it’s a production space and an incubator where they can explore, experiment and discover.” Providing an inclusive place for people who are working on projects that will bring positive change is very important to Ashley. Almost 10 years in, her dream of giving people the space and tools to create and lift their voices has been realized. What’s the most satisfying part of reaching this point? “Seeing real-world impact of the work that people make at the studio,” she says. “The funds that photographer Steven Casanova has raised from printing shirts and a giant Puerto Rican flag, the 500 shirts we made with Performing Statistics incarcerated teens that will go out to share their stories and message that prisons don’t work.” A year ago, Studio Two Three expanded into an adjacent space and doubled its square footage. The result is a hub for artists to learn and make, for community organizations to meet and collaborate, and for holding events. Ashley’s current focus? “We’re still actively raising funds to cover the expansion, and really enjoying the benefits of the extra space.”

WHERE TO FIND Studio Two Three · 3300 W. Clay Street, Richmond @studiotwothree · studiotwothree.org 14





NOELLE PARENT GIFTED interview Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick

As the owner and lead curator of Gifted, Charlottesville native Noelle Parent is a true ambassador for the Richmond maker community. Her gift box business features local products meaningfully packaged for personal and corporate occasions. Gifted is an entrepreneurial endeavor that transpired after 14 years in event and hospitality sales management with organizations such as SMG Management (Richmond Coliseum, Richmond Center Stage, and Altria Theater), Quirk Hotel, Boar’s Head Inn, and Starwood Hotels. In addition to operating Gifted, Noelle is a wedding planner for the Hive Collective. I interviewed Noelle at 804RVA, a place that helped launch her business. How did you grow your brand without burning bridges in the process? I was very upfront with Quirk when I decided to make the change [to self-employment]. I gave a six-month notice with a flexible agreement. There was no conflict of interest. I was not going to another hotel, so I was able to transition my role to another person without a sense of urgency. The business I was going into was complementary, so I was open and honest, and they supported that next step in my life.

Noelle with her daughter, Alexis

You could use any products for your business. Why are your boxes curated with items from local makers? I like the story behind the products—who makes them, where and how they are made, and what inspires them. While we are changing as consumers and starting to lean more local, it is still hard for makers to create the products and get them to our hands. It is a very eye-opening experience to meet these makers in their home and see first-hand their hardships in getting products to the market. Etsy helps, but I thought we were further along than we are. I like being another resource. We’re conducting this interview from a place that enhanced your early business development, 804RVA. You worked with one of its program experiences called COSTARTERS RVA. Tell us about it. My business formation attorney, C. Stinson Mundy, informed me about COSTARTERS. While I had this idea, I had never started my own business, and I knew that I needed some help and guidance. COSTARTERS was a good, quick crash course in start-ups. I gained invaluable lessons in terms of structure, financials, investor relationship and more. It encourages learning as a part of the

business process. I keep that in mind when I make a mistake. While you may think you can do everything on your own, COSTARTERS taught me that was not possible from the very beginning.

Know your role by evaluating your strengths, and find a team that can support you in the areas that need help. You are collaborating with Church Hill bridal shop, Urban Set Bride. With recent renovations, Gifted and Urban Set Bride are physically connected via a passageway created by knocking down some walls. How did that collaborative business arrangement evolve? After COSTARTERS, I started working out of 804RVA, but we all knew that my product space requirements would quickly outgrow it. Christine Greenberg, owner of the Hive Wedding Collective, was keeping an eye on the building next store. She called me as soon as it was available. She wanted to share a space with me, because Christine’s other business, Urban Set Bride, needed a larger waiting room. Our businesses seemed like a logical fit, since I sell custom wedding party gift boxes. What is the most rewarding part of your business? The community that I have built around this business has been great. The female entrepreneurs have been very supportive, and I would not have a business without them. The maker community has been amazing. These people are putting a lot of themselves into these products for their family. It has been really rewarding to incorporate a giving back element with the sale of gift boxes to the charity, Safe Harbor. Noelle’s Top Three Gift-Giving Tips 1. Don’t give something for the sake of giving it. Make sure it’s something that people will use or love. Impulse buys and lack of thought shows. 2. Find a product with a story behind it and then tell it. Or, if you can find something with an inside joke, gift it. 3. Unisex gifts like locally made shelf-stable foods and snacks, candles, and cutting boards are great items.

WHERE TO FIND Gifted · 600 N. 29th Street, Richmond · 16

@giftedrva · giftedrva.com 17

Brunch Market · Sun & Selene




Local metalsmith and jewelry maker Brittanny Chanel DeRaffele, owner of Sun & Selene, stumbled into creating The Brunch Market. Once a month, a back room at the Scott’s Addition restaurant LUNCH.SUPPER! is transformed with a mimosa and brunch bar, specialty local drafts, music with DJ Ant Boogie, a photobooth, and about 20 local and surrounding area vendors for a pop-up market. “It was kind of a happy accident,” Brittanny says. She heard about the space right before the 2016 holiday season, and on a whim, sent out a mass email. “I emailed a bunch of my maker friends like look, here’s a really cool space, would anyone be interested in doing a last minute shopping Sunday market?” Two weeks later, the first Brunch Market was a success— beyond what she could have ever expected. Everyone, from the venue to the makers and shoppers, enjoyed and benefited from the unique space that had been created. Then, it kept going and growing. There have been over 18 Brunch Markets since, and over 150 applications to be a vendor just this season. To get in, quality is the key. Whether it’s jewelry, printmaking, ceramic arts, woodworking, beauty, wellness, home goods, or something else altogether, products accepted at The Brunch Market are curated with care. “If you were to walk into a retail store here in Richmond and see it on a shelf, you’d be impressed by it,” is how Brittanny describes what they look for, adding, “we really look for solid branding, originality and ethical sourcing.” “It’s eye-opening to see how many amazing makers are around us. Getting new folks in the Brunch Market each month isn’t hard, with new people constantly applying.” No matter who is there, the maker space is truly magical. Some vendors have credited the market with helping them take their crafts full-time. And as far as customers go, “We’ve noticed a lot of repeat customers,” Brittanny says. “It’s Sunday funday! It’s a whole thing!”

@thebrunchmarket · thebrunchmarket.com WHERE TO FIND Brunch Market · Sun & Selene · @sunandselene · sunandselene.com 18



Open daily 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Over 1,000 art classes for adults and kids every year Open access to 16 professional art studios Contemporary art exhibitions Special art events, including Craft + Design and Collectors’ Night visarts.org



APOTHEC · Tricia Boor NA NIN · Kate Jennings & Isabel Lee PAN NATURAL · Suzy Brockmann SWEET CHEEKS ALL NATURAL · Vanessa McCauley LAURA’S BOTANICALS · Laura Baum MAVEN MADE · Bethany Frazier






TRICIA BOOR APOTHEC APOTHEC is rooted in the passion of healing, created by Tricia Boor, an aesthetician and massage therapist. She takes a visual, creative, and intuitive approach when crafting her products. You’ll find that each product speaks for itself—making it apparent that she and her team work diligently to concoct blends that provide a multi-sensory experience that smells incredible (and does wonders for the skin). “We worked hard to get the colors [of each product] the way that they are without using dyes. We let the color be the product, rather than a colored label.” From amber and tonka bean to blue tansy and rosewood, Boor seeks to find oils that are rare to find in today’s modern apothecary. Due to the impact of climate and environmental distress, the price of many of these rare oils has increased significantly. Therefore, it’s important to her that she maintains the integrity of sourcing highquality oils, while keeping the price accessible.

The women behind Richmond ’s holisticfocused skin, home, and body products— lovingly crafted with your wellness in mind.

Boor’s plan for her subterranean retail shop on Libbie Avenue is to expand into a pantry and parfumerie this winter—where custom blending is at the heart of her space. While various products are available in select retailers (including Whole Foods and Stella’s Market), her shop is home to everything—from herbal-infused oils, bath soaks, scrubs, lotions and sprays—to adorn your body and entice your senses.

words Allison Walton WHERE TO FIND APOTHEC · 318 Libbie Avenue, Richmond · 24

@shopapothec · shopapothec.com 25


Na Nin Studio



Na Nin Studio It all began as a soap-making hobby during the winter in the Goochland countryside. Pan Natural Goods has evolved into an all-natural line of essential oil-based skincare products, founded by Suzy Brockmann. From soaps and space mists to natural perfumes and skin care, her products are her personal way of encouraging people to honor the special relationship between body and nature. A beautiful aspect of her work is the way in which she incorporates elements of Feng Shui into each product, beginning with her signature Yin and Yang perfume roll-ons. As a certified Feng Shui consultant, Brockmann embraces the perspective of balance and harmony in her scents and smells. Every blend is appropriate for a different time or purpose. “It’s hard to avoid uniting the two works because it’s my blueprint. These self-care products are made from nature, and with the intention to be simple so that you can use them every day and feel good about it.”

KATE JENNINGS WITH ISABEL LEE NA NIN STUDIO Kate Jennings founded Na Nin in 2009 after returning from living and teaching in South Korea. Jennings sells travel-inspired fragrances, designs, and a newly released in-house line of clothing—all of which are showcased inside her charming space on South Addison Street. “My greatest inspiration is kindness, and I want my business to be a part of this well intentioned movement by supporting other small businesses, independent designers, and makers.” In 2014, Jennings released Na Nin house fragrances. Her signature collection was inspired by songs that were reminiscent of her favorite memories, visions, and feelings. “This was a very personal and therapeutic process during a challenging time, and I truly cannot describe what gratitude I have for where that avenue has led me and my business,” she says. Since then, her team has grown to 13 employees, including Isabel Lee, who leads the creative direction

and handcrafting of Na Nin’s custom in-house and collaborative fragrances, candles, and other botanicalbased blends. “It’s a component of my work that feels very fulfilling, and in the process, I aspire to do more collaborations and custom apothecary products that feel accessible to clients and customers.” Lee has always been inspired by the process of candle pouring, and has always loved scents and fragrances. “It’s a significant aspect of how you present yourself to the world,” she explains, and she continues to learn about plant-based botanicals and ingredients that expand her personal directory and inspire future blends. Lee credits Jennings for much of what she’s learned, and shares her vision for thoughtfulness and kindness in every part of the process. “Because we’re a small business, we can really sit down and talk about what it is that people want, and then do as much as possible to make that a reality.”

WHERE TO FIND Na Nin Studio · 101 S. Addison Street, Richmond · 26

There’s a practical reason and purpose behind each product that Brockmann makes. She ensures that only all-natural ingredients are used, in an effort to make them as effective as possible— proving that yes, natural ingredients actually do work. “Real life application of products is my process. I’ve never been a product junkie and my routine is pretty minimal, but these are the products that I wish were available when I was growing up.” For example, her Restoration Mist was a result of the need for natural itch relief when her husband was struck with chiggers—but also works effectively as deodorant, a daily face toner, and to help heal new tattoos. She also wanted to find an insect repellent that didn’t contain harsh chemicals, so she set out to make her own using organic oils and scents from nature. Since having a newborn, she’s now researching and developing a postpartum line, as she feels that it’s needed but postpartum needs are not widely talked about.


Pan Natural Goods

“I want to focus on what’s absolutely necessary, but also enjoyable. Practical, efficient, and simple.”

@naninstudio · shopnanin.com

WHERE TO FIND Pan Natural Goods ·

@pannaturalgoods · pannaturalgoods.com 27

words Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick


Sweet Cheeks All Natural

Vanessa McCauley wanted to find a natural solution to help treat her son’s eczema that didn’t involve topical steroids. She created Sweet Cheeks All Natural because as a mother of two young children, she kept noticing a void—of time, commitment, space, and understanding of self-care.

Forging an alternate path is nothing new for the startup community. Quite often, founders credit passion as the reason for their original career trajectory divergence. Bethlehem Pennsylvania native Laura Baum is one such individual, who ventured into the field of “southern folk apothecary goods and herbalism education.”

“The more research I did, the more I realized that everything I slathered on his baby skin was not only not helping, but likely making things worse.” So, she started getting rid of products with mineral oil, petrol chemicals, parabens, fragrance, and chemical preservatives—leaving her with ingredients like olive oil, baking soda, and shea butter. In seeing how those ingredients finally helped to bring relief to her son’s skin, she continued experimenting and landed on an unscented, shea-based lotion. From this, she created Sweet Cheeks. Her product line has since extended to include bath bombs, bath salts, massage oils, bug sprays, candles, room sprays, and perfumes.

Laura attributes her business philosophy—of consumer empowerment utilizing socially responsible practices—to drama therapy, which she learned as a theater major. Her desire to promote positive wellbeing manifested into connecting the general public to sustainable and seasonal plants, and a lifestyle of wellness and relationships to nature.

Along her journey, the use of the hashtag— #loveYOU—became an essential call-to-action to encourage others to invest in self-care, especially in a society that has shaped us to believe that the act of self-care is selfish. A revolution was born that extended Sweet Cheeks beyond products; it became an accessible community space, offering support and education around self-care. McCauley’s storefront opened its doors this past May at Stony Point Fashion Park, and is home to her line of products, as well as the handmade work and products of others. When sitting down to chat, it’s her discussion on the beauty industry that strikes a chord. “When it comes to the bath and body industry, it’s usually the selling of one of two things: fear or beauty—and I didn’t want to sell either one of those. I’m not saying my products are going to make you beautiful, but they will change your skin—and that will make you feel better.” She doesn’t believe that self-care has to be fancy, but since our skin truly is the largest organ of our body, she encourages that we at least be kind to it. “We’re so busy taking care of everyone else. It’s time to hold our own well-being sacred.”

WHERE TO FIND Sweet Cheeks All Natural @sweetcheeksallnatural · sweetcheeksallnatural.com #loveYOU · 9200 Stony Point Parkway, Richmond @hashtagloveyourva · hashtagloveyourva.com 28



In collaboration with Lucid Living, a holistic wellness space in Richmond’s Art District, Laura offers a weekly herbalism mentoring program that provides herbal medicine knowledge and resources. While organic skincare is her main product offering, Laura anticipates expansion into edible development with a commercial kitchen.

Boost your immune system this winter season with a Virginia native plant-based elderberry syrup. FLORAL + SPICE ELDERBERRY SYRUP 1 cup dried Virginia elderberries (Sambucus spp.) 2 cinnamon sticks 1/4 cup rose petals 3 tablespoons of fresh ginger (2 slices) 1 teaspoon crushed cardamom pods 1 small orange peel, white pith removed 1 scrape of a vanilla pod 1 tablespoon of self-heal flowers (Prunella vulgaris) 1 tablespoon of yarrow flowers (Achillea millefolium) 6 cups of filtered water 100-proof vodka or raw apple cider vinegar Raw local honey


Laura’s Botanicals

Combine all ingredients on the stovetop, and bring to a boil. Allow for a slow 30-minute simmer, then remove from heat. Let rest for 20-30 minutes, strain, and add up to a pint of local honey or glycerin (a soy based, sweet substance for non-ethanol based tinctures). If not using glycerin, add ethanol or apple cider vinegar (20% of the total recipe) to preserve. Label and refrigerate. It should keep about three– six months—long enough to get through the cold season!

WHERE TO FIND Laura’s Botanicals ·

@laurasbotanicals ·

laurasbotanicalsrva · etsy.com/shop/laurasbotanicals 29

Maven Made

MAVEN MADE words Bethany Frazier



Maven Made and its owner, Bethany Frazier, are distinctive. Bethany and her botanical-infused skincare and wellness brand abide by socially conscious business practices and philosophies such as organic, vegan, and ethically sourced ingredients; that is not so uncommon. What makes them less mainstream is their unapologetic public stance on issues fueling today’s highlycharged political and social climate. Bethany shares her personal insight on the balance of business and intersectional advocacy. If you follow Maven Made on social media, you might have noticed a shift within the past year. I joke that going vegan last August was the gateway drug to a personal awakening that I wasn’t expecting. This shift has seeped into how I use my voice, how I make business decisions, and how I use social media. I’m continually working to find a responsible balance to start conversations around topics like cultural appropriation, body image, self-worth, or white privilege and also posting about what I love to do: make natural wellness products. For me, constantly posting about natural skincare and the product line is exhausting, and too onedimensional. Although I’m part of the skincare and wellness industry, I refuse to uphold Maven Made’s image solely as an effortless, privileged “indie skincare” brand. For me, it’s a dangerous standard to set. I’ve witnessed much elitism, shame, colonialism, and glorification around the natural wellness movement. Often, I notice a small drop in followers after I post something centered around non-Maven Made content. Many people don’t want to see a conversation around social justice or intersectional feminism from a skincare Instagram account, but some do. I’ve even listed “queer and woman owned” on the backs of product labels. I know Maven Made isn’t going be liked by everyone, and I’m okay with that.

WHERE TO FIND Maven Made · 30

Establishing boundaries for who I work with, where my products are sold, and what events I participate in is a form of holding myself accountable to what this business stands for. Growing up, I wasn’t really encouraged to create boundaries and to say no, but I’m unlearning this conditioning. No matter how uncomfortable sticking to (or even redefining) boundaries has been, I’m becoming more in alignment with myself—and that’s everything. Through this shift, the authentic and vulnerable conversations I’ve had with other people is a reminder that I’m doing something right, something real. From a business standpoint, it makes sense to worry if this transparency has affected Maven Made’s sales. I don’t think so. In fact, this year I was finally able to leave my full-time job, and sales have increased. I know this is my story; this is my journey, and what works for me won’t work for everyone. I’m still trying to figure it out. I think that’s one of the most beautiful things I can do as a small business owner: to be honest, and to find where you can connect who you are with what you do.

@mavenmade ·

@mavenmaderva · mavenmaderva.com 31





words Bethany Frazier

With clarity and understanding, monthly astrological influences become our energetic allies. I certainly turn to astrology and lunar phases when planning, making decisions or launching a new product. Here’s a snapshot of the winter zodiac forces at play and how they can be applied or embraced in simple ways.


While difficult, staying grounded during this energetic time is vital. Sagittarius is a dominant, fiery and ambitious sign—one that usually takes on too much. Psst, think things through! While this energy can be wonderfully useful to get shit done for the holidays, be cautious of firm decisions or ambitious jumps until Mercury Retrograde passes on December 6. Free up some time for the New Moon in Sagittarius, December 7, to set intentions, especially when it comes to expansion, travel, and exploration. Throughout this busy month, remember to ground yourself, to say no when you’re at capacity, to take long meditative baths, or to simply stick up for yourself more. We end Sagittarius season under a Full Moon influence in sensitive and nurturing Cancer. Don’t be surprised if emotions are heightened. Be kind to yourself.

Let’s cut the “new year, new you” BS, shall we? Capricorn’s hardworking and determined disposition can get things done without the need for the fluff, attention or mantras. Depicted as the Sea-Goat, Capricorn endures the rugged climb upwards (the Goat) but also has a past from a different realm (the Sea). Reflect on your own journey. Where else can you be grateful for your own missteps, joys and lessons? With a New Moon (which is also a partial Solar Eclipse) in Capricorn on January 6, it might be an ideal time to rest and retreat. Think about the year ahead, but don’t become overwhelmed with plans and lists. Get recharged to take the Capricornic climbs you need.

Aquarian energy is eccentric, forward-thinking, and pays no mind to how others view them or their choices. We certainly need to see more of this Aquarian spirit (especially in Richmond!). Where can you apply this mindset in your life, in your business, or in your public image? Put who you are and what you stand for front and center. On January 21, we have some wonderful fiery energy on our hands with a Full Moon in Leo. Ruling themes are creativity, selfworth, and enjoyment. This might be a day to revamp your website, think less about what others think and start loving yourself more, or explore something that interests you (or that even makes you slightly uncomfortable, in true Aquarian fashion). Define what this means for you. You got this!


HOW TO TURN CUSTOMERS INTO FANS through packaging design

Surprise and delight them with a positive message

Make it easy to open and reseal if applicable

Encourage them to talk about your product and share with friends Think through all the details of the presentation of your product

Give them something extra, like a pin, card, or a handwritten note

R i ch m o n d, VA S e r vi n g bu si n e sse s n a t i o n w i d e

Make them feel something (inspired, beautiful, confident, happy, etc.)

r i ddl e de si g nc o.c om sa ra h@r i ddl e de si g nc o.c om

Craft in g be spok e b ra n d i n g, pa ck a g i n g a nd w e bsi te de si g n so sc r um pt i ous, you’ l l w a nt to de vour it. Wa n t to el e va te your pa c k a g i ng de si g n? L e t ’s ta l k .

HEARTILY BY NINA ZABAL · Cinthya Cuba de Zabal FREE MAIDEN · Rashana Miller SUSAN ELNORA · Susan Elnora CLARISSA B DESIGN CO. · Claire Berr y MOLLY VIRGINIA MADE · Molly Virginia Campbell HECHIZO · Hali Emminger KAMILI · Britta Kelley

words Anna Moriah Myers WHERE TO FIND Claire Berry · Clarissa B Design Co. @clarissab_designco · @clarissabdesignco etsy.com/shop/clarissabdesignco

For me, the statement necklace has been a common go-to. As a Southerner, small silver ball earrings are my staple. While not trendy or even punchy, they give just enough pop make me feel adorned. Jewelry and knitwear designer Claire Berry of Clarissa B Design Co. wears her wood stud earrings for everyday outfits, while reserving a chunky, ribbon necklace for trips or special occasions. This Virginia Commonwealth University graduate has been making wood-bead jewelry since 2010. Claire grew her business through farmers markets like South of the James, with a consistent clean design and friendly oneto-one customer interactions. For Claire, entrepreneurial pursuits are both freeing and challenging. While uncertain if she’ll ever feel like she’s “made it”, I’d firmly assert that her cheerful, classic, and versatile designs have become an iconic Richmond trend.

WHERE TO FIND Cinthya “Nina” Cuba de Zabal Heartily by Nina Zabal · @ninazabal @studioninazabal · shopheartily.com 38

Sometimes, iconic design comes from your background. For Cinthya Cuba de Zabal of Heartily, strong, often bright colors with bold prints seem to originate from her Mexican heritage. Nina’s statement earrings are not only her brand’s signature design, but her favorite go-to piece. “My mom always wore lots of beautiful jewelry, so my dream was to be old enough to wear big dangle earrings.” Her mother, an artist in her own right, has had a lasting influence on Nina’s creativity and use of color to express what she calls the magic of jewelry. Her collections transport the wearer to far off lands with rich colors, a mix of textures, and names such as “Mykonos” and “The Nile.”


WHERE TO FIND Rashana Miller · Free Maiden Jewelry @freemaiden_studio · @freemaiden freemaiden.com

But creativity doesn’t always come from your genes. For Rashana Miller of Free Maiden, crafting handmade metal jewelry is a spontaneous second career that has proven to be her calling. After 10 years of coaching college basketball, a move to Richmond, and a jewelry making class at the Visual Arts Center of Richmond, Rashana changed her career path. “It all clicked,” she recalls as she tells of her own everyday piece, her Nevie cuff, which she states, “[is] like my heart.” And heart is what she puts into every piece. Susan Elnora, a jewelry artist and metalsmith, finds satisfaction in her “sweetly badass” designs. Her everyday go-to piece is a gold unicorn skull necklace. With striking realism, Susan creates evocative landscapes such as fences and power lines alongside animal skulls and skeletons. Her wearable art is exhibited in galleries across the United States.

WHERE TO FIND Susan Elnora · @susanelnora · susanelnora.com



Molly Virginia Made



MOLLY VIRGINIA MADE words Shannon Siriano Greenwood

Molly Campbell fell in love. Not with a dude, or an apartment, or a puppy; she fell in love with her craft. She marbles leather with unconventional colors to make personal accessories, handbags, earrings, and other goods. The fluid melding of colors that makes each piece completely unique was the process that enthralled her. She couldn’t stop thinking about how to create and perfect her process (that she says is still not perfect). The experimentation of this medium is what had her hooked, and what sets her apart. Molly Campbell was called to this work. When painting lost its luster, she began looking for a new creative outlet. She discovered leather marbling. When Molly first started Molly Virginia Made, it was all about experimentation, from different color-ways (the mixing of colors to create unique designs) to various objects, bags, totes, and earrings. She quit her job at an art gallery and went on a road trip, where she experimented with sales by walking in to shops with samples to generate wholesale orders. Early in her process, she learned a great lesson in business. She learned to stop worrying about

WHERE TO FIND Molly Virginia Made · 40

anyone else, and created for herself. Sales were growing, but after receiving return requests she knew something had to change. Molly flipped the script on herself. She explained, “I was a faker, and I didn’t think I was good enough. I had to feel comfortable with the beauty I saw in each piece I made.” And just like that, almost no one sent an item back. She built her personal confidence, and it showed in her work. After receiving a few exciting pieces of national exposure—Alicia Keys was photographed wearing Molly Virginia Made earrings, and she was featured in Vogue Magazine—Campbell’s confidence continued to build, and her creative process started to streamline. She continued to invest in the channels where she saw the most response, primarily through Instagram. Now Campbell is thinking about scale, and how to remove herself from every part of the process— while still feeling creatively connected. She is an online seller through West Elm, sells in small shops across the country, and sells direct to consumers through her website and makers markets. She is striving for continued growth, in parallel with her pursuit of perfecting her creative process.

@mollyvirginiamade · mollyvirginiamade.com 41




HECHIZO words Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick

In Hali Emminger’s Scott’s Addition studio, southwestern light shines through a window wall of frosted glass into her mother’s meticulously maintained rubber and fig plant menagerie. Hali shares this 2000 square-feet, industrial-modern makerspace with her brother and father, who is a retired carpenter. Feeling stifled by Brooklyn hustle and bustle, Hali (pronounced like the comet) returned to Richmond, her high school and college haunt, in October 2017. According to Hali, this former motorcycle shop is a means for her family to “explore their creative side... a place to test the waters of retail shop expansion...and is reflective of a neighborhood in transition.” Working with mixed materials primarily based in metals, ceramics, and leather, Hali’s kiln-fired pieces are painstakingly crafted through handsculpting and casting. Her design inspiration comes from her travels across southwest and central America. Earthy textures and tones mimic the desert landscape. Hali credits Native American culture and traditions as her artistic

influence, but takes care to not misappropriate or replicate Native artisans. Her worry doll collection is a partnership with Friendship Bridge, a fair-trade nonprofit. Friendship Bridge empowers Guatemalans through micro-financed entrepreneurial opportunities, by which artisans set their own wages to make tassels and wrap worry dolls. With six years of experience in corporate product development, Hali understands the importance of small business organization and delegation. Technology is enabling Hechizo to develop other socially responsible relationships to assist with production and supply operations. Hali’s approach in design and business extends into Hechizo’s sustainability practices and marketing. Clay scraps are recycled into slips and new adornments. Additionally, the Hechizo brand intentionally casts a distinctive and rare light of representation by featuring models with a diverse array of skin tones. Find Hali’s adornments online and at road shows like Renegade Craft Fair. Follow her on Instagram to keep tabs on Hechizo’s retail shop progress.

WHERE TO FIND Hechizo · 1200 N. Boulevard Rear Unit A, Richmond · 42

@shophechizo · shophechizo.com 43

Kamili In 2001, Antoinette Murekatete’s family was one of only six randomly selected by an American agency to resettle in the United States as refugees of the violent, socio-political upheaval in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They were in an interim placement in Gihembe, a massive and notoriously unstable refugee camp in Rwanda. What Antoinette, her family, and countless thousands of beleaguered Congolese sought to escape was genocide. It was the wanton destruction of any semblance of home, livelihood, and daily life as a result of civil war. Placement in the U.S. resulted in the inimitable gift of safety and protection. A sense of belonging and even minimal prosperity were far less immediate for Antoinette and other refugee families. “I was 23 when I came,” Antoinette says. “For us to be here— it took a lot. I’m not going to forget who I am. I’m not going to let anybody make me feel different.” She also believes that it is extremely important for her children “to know… how hard life was for [their parents], and to work hard to become something they were not able to become.” Refugees are distinct from immigrants, in that they are displaced from their homelands and are, quite literally, fleeing for their lives. They must qualify for sanction and certification by the UN before they are eligible for relocation, and even then, many remain hopelessly stuck in refugee camps for decades. Once in America, initial help (in the form of healthcare and social service benefits) last less than a year, unless recipient refugees can prove continuing hardship and low income. But fundamental barriers in communication—the inability to speak English, much less to read and write it—prevent successful navigation of an already complex system, and so they lose what little assistance they had. Leslie Saul and Britta Kelley are both volunteers for ReEstablish Richmond, a nonprofit devoted to helping newly resettled refugees. Saul is the Congolese community organizer, a tireless family advocate, and a mentor to Kelley. Their collaborative efforts to provide pathways to resources for these refugees living in Richmond have resulted in an increasingly vital community of support. In particular, Kelley’s efforts gave rise to the foundation of Kamili, a cottage business producing handmade bracelets, whose proceeds directly supplement the incomes of these industrious women. “These are not women crafters who were beading in Africa,” Kelley says. “They are people from an extreme poverty level. They are blue collar. They are hardworking. They are night shifters.” Kelley speaks

with passion about Antoinette, Gorette, Esther, and the small handful of women who currently make the colorful, precisely patterned Kamili signature bracelets.



They make time for their craft when they’re not working their demanding jobs, running errands, caring for their families, and, when possible, pursuing job training or school. Antoinette, for example, earned her certificate as a certified nursing assistant, and now works full-time in a local nursing home. But she still needs the extra income to help support her family. “Depending on how many I make per day, I can earn a few hundred extra dollars every month,” Antoinette says. And it makes a difference. A Kamili bracelet is crafted from small disks of colorful stamped vinyl. “The beads are sourced from Ghana, Nigeria, and Rwanda,” Kelley says. The Congolese makers string the beads on measured lengths of corded elastic, according to original patterns that determine size, color combination, and design. The bracelets are made by hand, and sold locally in various popups, farmers markets, and a few local businesses, as well as online. Worn in stacks on the wrist, they make quite a visual statement, and the women clearly take pride in the quality of what they produce.

Even the company name, Kamili, resonates among these women. Translated from Swahili, it means ‘full,’ and is a metaphor for the lives they seek to build here: full of hope and purpose, full of joy and honest work, full of promise for the future. Kamili is helping these women “to prosper, to take up a craft, to have [a business],” says Kelley. With time and effort, what were once distant dreams for them will hopefully become a gradual reality through their own industry. “Our goal is eventually [to] provide full time jobs and benefits,” Kelley says. Antoinette, an expat matriarch who speaks five languages and frequently acts as an interpreter at gatherings, is ambitious, not only for herself, but also for her community in Kamili. “I would love for it to become big,” Antoinette says, and she works hard toward that goal. She makes at least five bracelets every day, but she’s increasing her daily quota to ten, despite constant demands on her time. “If we don’t make them….the business will fade. But even though it’s not big yet, it’s still helping. Little by little.”

KAMILI: BRACELETS FULL OF PROMISE words Robin Rison Ashworth WHERE TO FIND Kamili · 44

@shopkamili · shopkamili.com 45





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FOR THE MEGHAN MARKLE the stylish, well-traveled humanitarian with a wellness blog

1. Light fixture from Umanhoff Design by Wendy Umanhoff 2. Home fragrance from Na Nin by Kate Jennings 3. Candle from Tulip & Bear by Margaret Hunter 4. Wall hanging from Emerald & Fig by Emmie McMackin 5. Pillow from Jillian Rene Decor by Jillian Carmine 6. Cake pops from Candy Valley Cake Co. by Keya Wingfield

FOR THE RBG AKA RUTH BADER GINSBURG the advocate and trailblazer that inspires you

1. Scarf from Clarissa B Design Co. by Claire Berry 2. Cheese straws from Three Sisters Cheese Straws by Elizabeth Crowley, Peanut Kempe and Ann Kamps Taliaferro 3. Sleep serum and facial serum from Maven Made by Bethany Frazier 4. Gift box from Gifted by Noelle Parent 5. Earrings from Hechizo by Hali Emminger 6. Bath salts from Sweet Cheeks All Natural from Vanessa McCauley



Daily Delivery ˙ Events ˙ Workshops

8770 Park Central Drive • Richmond, VA 23227 • worthhiggins.com

bs i de col lect ive.co m To p l a c e a n a d o r s p o n s o r B S I D E , c o n t a c t a d s @ b s i d e c o l l e c t i v e . c o m follow us at @bsidecollectivemedia · hello@bsidecollective.com

423 Strawberry Street ˙ Richmond, VA ˙ 804.213.0232 strawberryfieldsflowersandfinds.com ˙ @strawberryfieldsrva

UMANHOFF DESIGN · Wendy Umanhoff JILLIAN RENE DECOR · Jillian Carmine SG WOODWORKS · Erin Till + Sarah Grinter PHOENIX HANDCRAFT · Johannah Willsey MARGARET HUNTER · Tulip & Bear RICHMOND TINTYPE CO. · Emily White WILLIE ANNE WRIGHT · Willie Anne Wright



Umanoff Design

words Shannon Siriano Greenwood

Wendy Umanoff found her way to lighting design by accident. Fueled by her love of design, her persistence, and an innate curiosity, she found an outlet for her own creative expression—and an opportunity to collaborate with other creators. Design runs in the Umanoff family. Wendy’s father, Arthur Umanoff, was a prolific midcentury modern furniture designer, best known for combining wrought iron and wood. As a child and a young adult, creativity filled Wendy’s life. After relocating to Richmond from New York City, Wendy went to work with RHome Magazine. After much persistence, she convinced her editor to give her a column called “Repurpose This,” where she found new and interesting ways to use old objects. Projects included repurposing a worn brake rotor as a flower vase and using a cigar box wrapped in burlap for a gift box during the holiday season. One of her experiments led to her path as a lighting designer, when she created a light fixture from a vintage block and tackle pulley (wood and metal), a metal bed spring, and a metal Industrial funnel. A spark ignited (not literally—Wendy is meticulous about wiring).

Wendy was “discovered” by the team from Shades of Light, and a partnership was formed that continues today. She designed collections of light fixtures for sale using reclaimed materials, and relied on this partnership for support in wiring, safety standardization, and for learning as much as she could about the business of creating light. As Wendy has grown in her career, she has expanded beyond light fixtures for the home. She now designs for hospitality clients, hotels, restaurants, and larger residential installations. At the core of her work is an element of collaboration. She mixes reclaimed materials with new pieces of design by working closely with other makers and craftsmen. If you look up in Vasen Brewing Company, there’s a perfect example: a piece created in partnership. Kyle Lucia, the co-owner of Phoenix Handcraft, helped bring to life the lighting sculpture that hangs in the Scott’s Addition brewery. By working with Jason Fredrick and Joey Spinner from the Shades Of Light Production Department, a true piece of art was created.


WHERE TO FIND Umanoff Design · 1607 Altamount Avenue, Richmond @umanoffdesign · @umanoffdesignlighting · umanoffdesign.com 52




Jillian Rene Decor

JILLIAN RENE interview Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick

Richmond holds secrets. Jillian Carmine, an interior designer and owner of Jillian Rene Decor, is one of them. A Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Bachelor of Fine Arts graduate, Jillian specializes in modern handmade pillows with a focus on original design and fine craftsmanship. With 4K sales and over 23K admirers on Etsy since 2008, her accolades and press features are too extensive to list. A few notables include Rejuvenation, HGTV magazine, Good Housekeeping magazine, Better Home and Gardens Magazine, Wall Street Journal, Design Sponge, and the Tonight Show Green Room.

it. Lastly, I had a supportive community of other online artists, colleagues, and local businesses like Blackbird Tees. You build friendships with people that you work with over and over again.

What drew you to into the realm of artisan, handmade pillows? I had a professor at VCU who focused on furniture design. He was successful, but it was hard to sell. It was not a dependable sole source of income, and I watched how he transitioned into something else. I was in school during the recession, and saw a market void. People wanted to change the look of their homes and spaces, without making a large financial investment. Pillows are tangible and small, a lightweight yet unbreakable accessory that can dramatically finish a space. What do you think contributed to your success? Emily Henderson [HGTV’s season five Design Star victor, Secrets from A Stylist host, and Target ambassador] was an integral part in the launch of my business. She found my colorblock pillow on Etsy, put it on her blog, and facilitated my first press feature with HGTV. I continue to work with her…I think it was a combination of things. I was trying to forecast trends by incorporating color or design elements that I observed popping up in fashion, like predicting the Pantone color of the year. So, when people were searching on Etsy or Google for that color, they were hitting on my product before anything else. I still had to learn SEO, but forecasting is a little more creative. Also, that colorblock pillow was different. The press just gravitated to

WHERE TO FIND Jillian Rene Decor · 54

You have the demand; why do you intentionally not outsource your production process? Outsourcing is very complicated. I don’t want to do it if it means lessening the quality of the product. It’s tricky. I would be profiting more from outsourcing (versus in-house), but I prefer quality over the monetary gain. Additionally, we do a lot of customization, and that’s how the business has evolved. Being an interior designer, I have a network of other interior designers who are repeat buyers and have particular branding needs. Also, I have individual clients who are building their collection over time with custom orders. Pen, pencil, or computer? Computer, but I like the juxtaposition of pencil and computer. I’m old school, I still use a drafting table…but I’d be lost without my computer and design programs that I use daily. I like to erase, so I don’t use pen. What have you learned about running a business that you didn’t know prior would be so important? I don’t think that anyone realizes how hard it is to start and maintain a creative business—well, any business. It’s hard to prepare for the financial and emotional considerations, and for being responsible for other people. Employees are first in my business. I didn’t expect that with any type of success you’re going to get knockoffs, with big box stores and even other creatives copying your work. Design integrity is super important to me… it’s difficult to protect your brand, and you little gain pursuing infringement, so I have chosen to keep on being new and creative. You are going to get knocked down, but the middle and long game are key. You have to learn to pivot.

@jillianrenedecor · jillianrenedecor.com 55

SG Woodworks

Hailing from a family of entrepreneurs and business owners from upstate New York, Sarah was familiar with the atmosphere of a workshop from the start. “Growing up, my dad was a mechanical engineer. From a young age, I was taught to see how things were put together by taking them apart, to understand the mechanisms of things, to solve problems, and to see projects to completion.” This grounding in schematics and entrepreneurism made her decision to start S.G. Woodworks in 2004 “only natural.” After graduating with her Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) from Virginia Commonwealth University, Sarah noticed an unfulfilled niche in the Richmond, Virginia area for an upholstery shop that also offered high-quality furniture restoration.

S.G. WOODWORKS words Angela Huckstep

I caught up with the dynamic duo that is S.G. Woodworks in the Lakeside storefront that’s been the nexus of their operations since November of 2017. After two years in a spare bedroom, three years in an Oregon Hill studio, and eight years in their Fulton Hill location, S.G. Woodworks has matured into the area’s premiere upholstery and woodworking shop. 56

Erin grew up in a family that collected and invested in furniture, decorative arts, and fine art. Erin was trained to see things with a critical eye from the age of four, recounting that “I remember [my mother] showing me the difference between transfer porcelain and hand-painted porcelain.” After earning her BFA from University of California of Irvine, Erin spent a number of years working as the mid-century modern furniture and decorative arts specialist at an auction house outside of Washington D.C., where she honed her eye even further. “Handling the sale of 50,000 pieces per year will give you the education you need to know about what’s popular,” she explained, “but also to understand the values and the material culture” that denote how and why these objects were made. “We work on a fair amount of furniture here [at S.G. Woodworks],” Erin continued, “but having seen so much over the years really helps me understand why we take the care that we do, and it makes me appreciate Sarah and her extraordinary abilities. I could never have done this by myself; it would have never worked on a day-to-day basis with just me.”

to accruing regional contracts with national retailers and brands. Along with their loyal clientele of hotels, restaurants, churches, and residential projects, both women say that all of their success is the direct result of their commitment to immaculate craftsmanship and impeccable customer service. “For us, it’s really important that anything that is done can be un-done, kind of like painting conservation work. All of our decisions are made to last well into the future, and that’s one of the reasons that we’ve had such excellent client retention rates—because we have such a wealth of knowledge at our disposal, and we use that to make smart decisions in the upholstery process and restoration process. So not only does it look good when it’s delivered, but it looks good in three years, and in thirteen years, and by the time their kids inherit it they are ready to change the fabric.



With the technical prowess of the company’s founder, Sarah Grinter, and the training and business strategy of her partner, Erin Till, the pair have built a bustling community around their passion for preserving and repairing objects. As Sarah explains, “we match each other—we like to say that we divide and conquer.” Before becoming partners, Erin worked with Sarah at the Fulton Hill studio for two years. Over time, Sarah recognized Erin’s strengths and drives as indicative of someone “who is as invested as [I am], through the good times and the bad.” Looking at each other with pride, Erin relayed, “we have different skill sets that really work together, and you just don’t come across that that often.” Sarah added, “Our differences are our strengths. We don’t duplicate, unless it’s measuring twice.” While Erin heads the front of the house, managing client relations, sales, and business strategy, Sarah manages the back of the house, overseeing the workshop’s operations, managing quality control and the overall well-being of the shop.

“We welcome all of our clients to come into the shop and be part of the process if they are interested,” Erin explained, “from start to finish, it’s a different experience. We are very open, very transparent, we don’t cut any corners, and we can be trusted not to. If you are going to spend $200 a yard on fabric, if you’re going to entrust someone to work on an heirloom that has been in your family for seven generations, you need to find a company to work with that values that trust—[like] we do.” S.G. Woodworks takes the time to educate clients and designers about the labor and decisions that go into each piece, and exists as a community resource for anyone who is interested. Erin and Sarah started an intern-to-apprentice program with the goal of fostering craftsmanship, particularly with women in the Richmond area. With this initiative, the pair hopes to inspire talented craftswomen “committed to upholding very high standards, and to practicing the same kind of commitment to their clientele and transparency that we are so passionate about.” Given that the upholstery and woodworking trades are traditionally male-dominated industries, I asked Sarah if she could share any examples of sexism she has experienced in her career. Erin chimed in. “When Sarah founded the business, she used her initials S.G. to disguise the fact she was a woman.” Sarah relayed that she would often have clients ask if S.G. Woodworks was her father’s business, and she recounted often having to prove her prowess to a number of clients, some of which are still with her today. Being 25 years old when she started the business, and female, she explained, “[Using the initials] S.G. was a way [to make it] a more level playing field.” And level it they have. In its 14-years of operation, S.G. Woodworks has become known as a force of will, passion, and perfection in the city of Richmond. What Sarah and Erin have built goes far beyond the label of a maker’s shop, and stands as an example of what happens when partners clock 200+ hours a week into a grassroots operation.

When asked about their business strategy, Erin notes how their recent growth as a company is largely due

WHERE TO FIND S.G. Woodworks · 6945 Lakeside Avenue, Richmond · @sgwoodworksrva · sgwoodworksrva.com





Phoenix Handcraft

Art is very subjective. How do you handle criticism? You have to be able to handle criticism. I am a very sensitive person in a lot of ways, so it has been hard for me. I realized that I have to set boundaries. Everyone has a different relationship with art, and is entitled to their opinion and interpretation. Criticism is a useful tool to discover other ideas. What business development skills are required of an artist or maker? What advice do you have for others? For me, the most useful things are organization and being willing to learn something... being resourceful is key. If you can’t do it, hire someone else.

The most basic thing about selling is finding the intersection of what you want to make and what customers want to buy.

PHOENIX HANDCRAFT interview Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick

Mosaic artist Johannah Willsey and her blacksmith husband Kyle Lucia resurrect artisan tools and techniques of the past to create functional and modern furniture, home décor, and adornments. Their business, Phoenix Handcraft, is a partnership forged in values that are deeply committed to the balance of family, environmental sustainability, and local community. Johannah shares her insight on being both an artisan and a craftsman. Do you agree with the statement that historically, mosaics are equal in caliber to oil paintings and other fine arts, yet today it is viewed as more of a craft? I would agree with that statement—if you put the word America in there. I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts in art history. I considered a Master of Fine Arts, but was unable to find a mosaic program in the United States. You can get a university degree in the United Kingdom, Italy, Turkey, and northern Africa, but not here. In Europe, mosaic art is on the same level as fine painting. The work that comes out of Europe is truly higher-level.

WHERE TO FIND Phoenix Handcraft · 58

If you can find that, it’s a lucky thing. For me, that intersection is to keep it interesting. I don’t want to be that artist who is making the same thing because that’s what customers keep buying. Keep pushing your boundaries so you can keep growing and not feel stuck. In the past, you have said that internet sales are an important aspect. Is that still true, and what online tools have benefited Phoenix Handcraft? I would say that is still true. We started off slow, with trade shows and Etsy at the same time. For the first three years we did a lot of shows. While it’s good to touch base and meet people, it requires a lot of physical work. Now, we only do a few carefully chosen shows a year. We think long game for our marketing because often, clients reach out years later. Online sales don’t create the same backbreaking work and time requirements as trade shows. Etsy, our shop website, and Pinterest work well for us. You are very active and engaged in the community with RVA MakerFest, RVA Makers, and Richmond Craft Mafia. Which is more important: 10,000 hours or 10,000 contacts? I would pick 10,000 hours. It’s about technique, while 10,000 contacts is about selling. I guess that says something about my personal goals.

@phoenixhandcraft · phoenixhandcraft.com 59

interview Ramsey Buskey


Tulip & Bear Have you ever smelled a candle that is a true labor of love? Margaret Hunter, the creative designer of Tulip & Bear, creates nontoxic and eco-friendly handcrafted artisan candles. Each candle has its own story and inspiration that stems from important and meaningful moments in her life. I had the pleasure to speak with Margaret about her journey in business, and her personal path as a maker.



What is the thought process for your inspirations when creating a new scent? I always do a mood board when I’m coming up with a scent. I want it to be a full body experience. The process is slow, it’s very creative, and I feel like I get to bring in all of my different passions—art, music and poetry. I try to immerse myself into a world of a scent and then let it influence the notes that I’ll pick up. Describe your business journey. I was an actress in New York. When we decided to move [to Richmond] for my husband’s work, I really wanted to reinvent myself. I didn’t want to continue the nights-and-weekends schedule of an actress, especially because I knew I wanted to start a family. I have always been into essential oils and fragrances, and I always loved the blending of essential oils for different therapeutic properties. I made this blend for my husband that had lavender, citrus, sandalwood, and vanilla. It was very rich and uplifting for him to wear at work. He was like, “I love this! I would love to have this in a candle. Can you figure out how to make this into a candle?” So I just decided yeah, sure. I started playing around with wax, I bought a candle-making kit, and I made a lot of bad candles. Once we moved here, I didn’t have a job, so I just went for it. Bit by bit, I figured out how to do taxes, how to start a small business, and a lot of the boring things. Little by little, I figured out how to go from A to Z. What has been the biggest challenge with your business? It’s been the juggling and the balancing. I really love being a mother. But I also love the creative outlet of my business I don’t want to do either one half-assed, so I’ve really been trying to figure out what is enough. I think that’s why my business has been so organic. I’ve only put as much as I could into it. My family never takes a back seat. The struggle is how to pour myself into the work without compromising the life that gives me life—my family and my life outside of work. How did you learn to make candles? A lot of trial and error. I did a lot of research, studying what kind of scents people were buying, and noticing what kind of scents were popular. I don’t want to put something out there that’s just so-so. What is your earliest scent memory? Growing up, we would go to New Harmony, Indiana for two weeks every spring for a writer’s retreat that my parents were a part of. All around the property were honeysuckle bushes. For a kid growing up in Manhattan, it was this unbelievably beautiful experience to be in the gardens, smelling the waft of honeyscukle and picking off the honey stems to suck out the sweetness. I love that memory. WHERE TO FIND Tulip & Bear · 60

@tulip_and_bear ·

@tulipandbear · tulipandbear.com 61




Richmond Tintype Co. Nostalgia, romanticism, mythology, ritual, anachronism. Words like these—full of personal meaning, texture, depth, and process—most aptly describe the artistic impetus of Emily White’s work in tintype photography. She is a photographer, a teacher, an artist, a chemist, a craftsperson, a portraitist, and a documentarian. Eleven-year-old White accompanied her older brother to a darkroom class and promptly fell in love with photography. Since then, she has cultivated a particular, nearly obsessive, passion for documentary photography and its ability to “capture a subject as [I] see it.” White “started documenting as a response to my realization that everything I love won’t exist forever.” Consequently, capturing various landscapes and faces significant to her personal experience has become a cornerstone of her photographic life. Tintype photography, a method historically associated with the 1860’s to 1880’s, drew her for a number of reasons. “As I have artistically progressed, I have technologically regressed.” She loves the exacting intentionality of the process, the almost magical interaction of silver and light used to create the image, and the fact that tintype photography produces only one unique, tangible photograph that cannot be duplicated. The result is a truly special keepsake. “I’m not attached to using old things to create these images, because they are contemporary. I’m just using an historic process… because it’s the only way to produce what I want to produce.” The tintype has given White the ability to transform everyday spaces and make them seem magical, even if she’s photographing a familiar outcropping of kudzu somewhere in the city, or a cherished view of the James River.

WHERE TO FIND Richmond Tintype Co. · 62

White can take her work most anywhere, and she’s becoming a fixture at various local events. “Step right up! Gen-u-ine tintypes made by hand!” she jokes. Ironically, the tintype remained a popular carnival booth attraction well into the 1920’s in America. She enjoys that referential appeal, and apparently, so do her customers. “You get engagement with community,” which is something White truly values. A studio portrait, however, invites a more intimate understanding of subject, and a greater measure of time and interaction. “I think it comes from the intention, the objective, and the desire to engage with a subject in a particular way,” she says. She works at length to understand how her portrait subjects wish to look, how lighting affects the lines and contours of a face, how pattern translates in tintype image. Consequently, the tintype has “a wide variety of applications. It makes an awesome wedding photo, a headshot, a family portrait, or a weird experimental image.” The process isn’t finished until White and her subject are satisfied. “I get overwhelmed by modern expectations of immediacy. I can take a fast photo, but I like taking my time.” It’s this sensitivity to detail, process, and personality that earns White numerous repeat clients. “I feel very privileged and honored to [share] these moments of vulnerability. I don’t think that would exist with a more modern method.” The Library of Virginia recently commissioned White to produce a landscape tintype for their permanent collection. “Every single image has the implicit bias of the photographer behind it. Every portrait has the projected image of the subject. Where those meet, something special is created.”

@tintype_rva · emwhitephoto.com


WILLIE ANNE WRIGHT Portrait of a Lensless Photog rapher words Elizabeth Cogar

While some in the Richmond creative world are scrambling to get started, one artist is busily building on a practice that she began more than 50 years ago. Now in her early 90s, Willie Anne Wright continues to explore her medium, lensless photography, making new work and sharing it with eager followers. Born in Richmond’s Barton Heights neighborhood, Willie Anne earned a degree in psychology at the College of William & Mary while moonlighting in the art studio. “I was always interested in art but never took it too seriously, because my parents wanted me to have a job,” she remembers. While raising three children with her husband Jack, she continued to take classes, and eventually she earned a Master in Fine Arts at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in 1965. Painting remained her medium until the summer of 1972, when Jack gave Willie Anne her first camera, a Canon 35mm. A class she took from now-retired VCU professor George Nan set her on a new path that she continues

to travel. “I remember we were challenged by George to make our own pinhole cameras. The first time I saw what that could do, it opened a door that I had never ever thought of.” Since discovering the magic of making pictures without a conventional camera, Willie Anne has continued to experiment. “I’ve tried just about everything,” she says. Projects have included ghostly pinhole photos of Civil War reenactments, eerie abandoned sites in the American Southland, Cibachrome color prints of swimming pools, and most recently, lumen prints of tarot cards designed by Pamela Colman-Smith in 1909. She is now revered for her many years of experimentation and success. New photographers seek out her expertise and advice as they begin on a journey she started long ago. Looking back over the years, she’s happy with the way things have turned out. “Everything I wanted to happen, has happened,” she says. “Who could have planned that?”

WHERE TO FIND Willie Anne Wright · willieannewright.com 63

Maeve Grace Lum-Frazier



1.5 human years Studio Mate of Bethany (Maven Made)

1.5 human years Studio Mate of Emily White

How We Met: She was born in our backyard! Long story short, her mom abandoned her, so we quickly decided that we’d be up for adding her to our family.

How We Met: Ring dog rescue

Age unknown Studio mate of Erin Till & Sarah Ginter (S.G. Woodworks)

Maeve in Three Words: Sassy, moody, gorgeous About Maeve: Her purrs are so loud and calming—when she’s in the right mood, of course.

Gus in Three Words: goofy clown, sidekick, the sweetest About Gus: Gus was a good boy with a naughty streak… lots of digging and eating houseplants. Many socks were sacrificed. My favorite thing he does is pull back the covers and tuck himself in. He is a serial countersurfer—if you leave a sandwich on the counter and walk away, it will be gone when you return. He sometimes just can’t contain himself and has to show you how much he loves you. You can see him straining to reel it in, but he just can’t because he’s so excited and loves you so much.


How We Met: Tyler, a sharp and resourceful young woman who works at SGW, found her in an alley and rescued her! She is an umbrella tree and came in looking all wild, but we tamed her and now she’s part of the team. Matilda in Three Words: Water when dry About Matilda: We love Matilda for her air-purifying properties and her listening skills.


Find that thing you love and make it

3300 W Clay St. in Scott's Addition • 804.254.7302 studiotwothree.org • @studiotwothree

WOODLAND HEIGHTS STUDIO · Nga Nguyen-Weaver &Carren Clarke McAdoo MOLLY SANYOUR CERAMICS · Molly Sandor PAPER ROSE CO. · Carrie Walters UNICIA BUSTER · Unicia R. Buster FLOURISH CREATIVE · Laura Marr

Molly Sanyour Ceramics




words Kya Carter

Molly Sanyour vividly recalls her first memory with ceramics. “In elementary school, I went to a Catholic school and every year, each grade, would make a new activity piece out of clay...one year we made [the Virgin] Mary ” said Sanyour. “I would skip recess to make pigs and camels and hay bales”. Needless to say, Molly changed her major from business upon the realization that her macroeconomics class “didn’t click,”. She later graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ceramics from James Madison University and obtained a K-12 art teaching license.




words Rebecca Edwards

Nga and Carren are good friends and co-owners of Woodland Heights Studio with two totally different styles. Nga has been creating functional pottery since graduating from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Craft and Material Studies in 1995. “I like producing pieces that people use every day—it’s a part of me and a connection with another person.” Carren, on the other hand, was introduced to pottery on a whim nearly 20 years ago. She heard a calling. The voice? Nga. That’s right—Nga taught Carren’s first class and encouraged her to take her practice to the next level. In Carren’s case, the next level was Africa. In 2008, Carren spent ten days in Senegal, a trip that would shape her work for years to come. “Ceramics is the oldest craft in the world. I noticed that faces of people of color were missing in fine, contemporary work. So, I wanted to combine the two.” They both know the importance of giving yourself space to create. “When you lead a

full life, it’s important to communicate your needs to family and friends,” says Nga. Carren adds, “We have so many things to do, so no one prioritizes sitting quietly and just being, but that’s when inspiration happens.” For Nga, she receives inspiration by connecting to nature and checking out other artists locally.

Although Molly considers marketing a challenge, she uses the power of social media to her advantage. “I don’t have to travel to Japan to share my work with someone in Japan,” she says. Every Monday evening she hosts “Throwing with Molly” on Instagram (IGTV). During the show, Molly demonstrates her craft and techniques while fielding questions from a live audience. Afterward, a video recap is available on her YouTube channel and website.

When making the decision to go from part-time crafter to full-time maker, Carren says, “believe in yourself and make sure your foundation is strong (emotionally, physically, spiritually). It’s going to take work.” Nga advises makers who are thinking of making the leap to

Sanyour offers the following advice to aspiring artists: “Be brave in who you are and what you make… as long as you’re making a step, you’re going somewhere.” By doing this, Sanyour always makes sure to stay true to herself when creating: “I’m always making for me.”

“expect to put in more than 40 hours a week, and promote yourself everywhere you can.” They both say it’s worth the effort. Carren shares that “I am so proud that my work is being seen and received, here and around the world. And, that I’ve set an example for people coming behind me that this is possible. I know I’m living the life that I’m supposed to be living.”

WHERE TO FIND Woodland Heights Studio · woodlandheightsstudio.com 70

Molly artfully balances a passion for education and pottery through her work as a full-time ceramics instructor at her high school alma mater, Trinity Episcopal School in addition to running her own business, Molly Sanyour Ceramics. It was not always so easy. While her first business, Molly Sanyour Art, dissolved due to insufficient sales, Molly credits it as a valuable experience. “The more I do, the more I learn.”

WHERE TO FIND Molly Sanyour Ceramics ·

@mollysanyourceramics · mollysanyourceramics.com 71

Paper Rose Co.



words Christina Dick Carrie Fleck is the artist behind Paper Rose Co. I was excited when I was assigned to interview her. I’ve been purchasing her flowers ever since I heard about them, and I love giving them to clients of my business as welcome presents. We met for coffee in the new Greengate neighborhood, halfway between Carrie’s home in Oilville and my condo in Rocketts Landing. Carrie is an interesting combination: an artist, meticulous in her craft, who is also type A, hyper-organized, and a lover of planners, beauty products, and French bulldog puppies. While she has dabbled in paper flowers as a hobby for ten years, Carrie got more into the craft at the beginning of 2016, as a way to her get mind away from her work as a graphic designer. She wanted something that would take her away from her computer screen. In graphic design and branding, as more and more clients shifted to wanting strictly digital products, there’s never really a finite end to your work. While she was doing great work that she was proud of, she lost the sense that she was accomplishing something. “I could be doing this for the next ten years, and just feel like I’m a hamster on a wheel. I need to get back into making something with my hands so that I can feel like I’m being creative again,” she says. “At the end of the night, I could literally finish a flower and say, look, I made this. I felt good about it. I could see the results. I could put it on my desk and enjoy it the next day or I could give it to somebody and there’s a little bit of joy that spreads. It was really rewarding.” This ‘little hobby’ ended up inspiring her to revamp her whole life. “I’m not working with clients any more, and this is making me much happier,” she says.

“I mean, I still work all the time. But, it is much more enjoyable work.”

WHERE TO FIND Paper Rose Co. · 72

We talked about the evolution of her business, which has shifted away from pop-ups and markets to custom, commissioned work. I asked her to tell me about her newest venture, a hands-on paper flower workshop. “People have been asking me to do workshops for over a year. But I always said that until I know I can do it right, I’m not going to get into it. I knew I needed to commit and put the time into it. And I put a lot of time into this one so that I know It’s going to be the way I want it to be.” The class isn’t about mentoring future paper flower business owners; she just wants to share her craft with others so that they might have a fun hobby like she does. It’s clear she loves what she does, and that the creativity and pride in making something beautiful fuels her. After each custom piece, she takes the time to photograph it for her records. “The thing about painting is that painters have the option to reproduce their work en masse. Even in sculpture, there’s potential to make molds. Once I ship off my work, those photos are all I’ll have left of what I created,” she says. “I don’t really like doing the same thing over and over again. I love that people love specific things that I make, but I don’t really want to be someone who just makes blush peonies all day long over and over again. That’s not creatively challenging.” “Working with brands would be really awesome, but haven’t approached any of them, because I’m so busy. I have so many great ideas for things like that but unless I can really commit and present myself with my best foot forward, I’m not going to put myself out there until I can really nail it. That’s part of being a perfectionist, I guess.”

@paperose.co ·

@paperoseco · paperose.co 73

OUTSIDE LINES MODERN COLOR PAGES interview by Ja’Nai Tellis Frederick

What happens when art is inaccessible, or not reflective of a community? Meet two talented artisans, Unicia R. Buster and Laura Marr, responding to needs of a community desiring mindfulness with inclusive, illustrative pages.

At that time, I was an art specialist at Virginia Commonwealth University Hospital and noticed that while my patients were ethnically diverse, the coloring books distributed for rehabilitation, recovery, stress and anxiety betterment were not. So, I made coloring pages representative of them. They loved them, and [the book] eventually found its way to Amazon. What inspires you to make? Every person that I meet. The majority of my work has people in it. I categorize myself as a people artist. I capture personalities, characteristics, and traits. Why is hair a frequent motif in your work? Hair is my thing. Growing up, I always had issues with my hair. In my community, we were essentially shamed into chemically and physically straightening it. Natural hair, especially more coarse textures, was deemed less desirable, unclean, and unkempt. The [physically] damaging effects [of over-processed hair] led me to embrace my natural hair, initially with braids. However, I was told to take them out for my high school graduation. My voluminous hair did not fit under the graduation cap. It was a struggle. I went natural, but in the 1990’s, that was not the norm.


Unicia identifies herself as a textile artist, graphic designer, and illustrator. She is the self-published author of Coloring Curls, Coloring Curls 2, Finding Your Picasso, and U.N.I.C.I.A.: The Unique, Natural, Idealistic, Celebrated, Illustrious Art of African-American Hair. How did you become an illustrator? I was not always creative, but I remember wanting to do something for my mother during Christmas at the age of seven or eight. I frequented bookstores to devour those how-to-craft guides. On this particular occasion, I discovered a beaded necklace and bracelet book. From that moment forward, I was always crafting, beading, needle-pointing, and drawing. In middle school, I received a Visual Arts Center of Richmond scholarship. That experience introduced me to stained glass, ceramics, painting, and fabrics. For me, diaries were meant for drawings, not words. It was a release—an ideation method for other art mediums, such as quilting. While I took five drawing classes as a part of my Bachelor of Fine Arts from Cornell University and Master of Arts from George Mason, I did not take my drawing seriously until the coloring book, Coloring Curls.

WHERE TO FIND Unicia R. Buster · 74


What spurred the creation of Coloring Curls? In summer 2015, Noah Scalin’s Skull-A-Day gave me the idea to start an afro-a-day project. His idea is to expand one’s creativity by crafting something daily, utilizing everyday materials. Through this process, the coloring book concept emerged.

In my drawing, photography, and dolls, I started exploring hair and comparing its texture to earthy elements like wool, beans, flowers, bamboo, etc. I want hair to be associated with nature. African American hair is just as beautiful as anything else. I want women to be comfortable with themselves regardless of how they choose to style [their hair]. What do you wish you would have known fifteen years ago? Part of it is just maturing, but I wish I would have had more dedication to finishing a project, and would not have allowed bumps to derail the process. I hit an obstacle with my book, Finding Your Picasso, and put it down. Creating something little every day pushed me. With the internet and social media, you have encouraging community feedback like never before. [That feedback] pushed me to self-publish, after not hearing anything from a publisher. Be dedicated and keep going, no matter what. I wish I would have known that when I was younger. Where do you want to take your work? I strive to be more impactful, and so I want to move into more political and social art. Yet, I also want to teach math. I love math, science, and art.

@unicia · uniciab.wixsite.com/artwork 75

How did you discover illustration and graphic design? I can’t remember a time that I didn’t draw. It’s always been a part of my life. I knew I wanted an art career of some kind since I was a child. In high school, I was hired by a department store to create fashion illustrations for their weekly newspaper ads. From there, I went to Baylor University and received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in graphic design, with a focus on illustration. I’ve done postgraduate coursework in Florence, Italy, and Scotland. I describe my work as undulating, intricate, and thoughtful. Drawing is where my work speaks the most; it’s my most expressive form of communication. Your work is full of iconic landmarks and landscapes. What draws you to them? Travel sketching allows you to take it all in. I sit, linger, and soak in all the smells and noises of a place. You feel the buzz of the people, and I have more time to record that memory as a snapshot in time. What inspired Inky Richmond? I didn’t intend to become a coloring book artist. My aunt, Donna Anderson, who was a fine art painter, developed a hand palsy that left her frustrated and unable to paint. I brought her the standard, mass-produced coloring book after reading it could be used as form of therapy. While it was great physically, the mundane illustrations lacked meaning and were rather non-captivating for a creative professional. I decided to craft high-quality images of renowned places to evoke memories and emotions. Great detail, time, and expense were placed in both the design and print of the book to resonate with fellow artists of all abilities. What is your favorite Richmond spot? I absolutely love biking on the Virginia Capital Trail. It’s beautiful to watch the wind blowing through the fields as you speed by. It’s a great place to go with my family and meet other people.


Flourish Creative Laura Marr has 20 years of branding and design experience. In her studio, she crafts multi-layered visual messages through graphics, posters, maps, invitations, signage, and apparel. Her style is influenced by the early 20th century golden age of illustration, a pre-photography era that permeated the visual landscape of print media and fine arts. Her background in theatre design at the University of Texas evolved into freelance design for museum and tourism sites. In early 2017, Laura released Inky Richmond, an award-winning illustrative coloring book. Her current studio work involves the creation of a special 100th Anniversary Broad Street Station logo, which will be released by the Science Museum of Virginia in 2019.

Social media is a great tool for artists to gain exposure. Are there any drawbacks? Since social media makes it possible to see the work of thousands of talented people around the world, I’m sure it could be easy to wonder if you and your talent can really stand out. I’d encourage young artists and illustrators not to worry and just focus on what they love to make. You will eventually find the right clients and the right projects.

Believe in yourself and your work—your uniqueness will shine through. Tell us something we may not know. In the early 2000’s, I was an art director at Punch and helped create Seymour, the dinosaur mascot of Children’s Museum of Richmond, with the support and visionary idea of Wyndi Carnes. As a parent, it is wonderful to see children interact with someone that I created. I love that. My artwork is physically reaching out to children and giving them a hug. I love that the museum has embraced him.

WHERE TO FIND Flourish Creative · 76

@flourishrva ·

@flourishcreative · flourishrva.com 77






5 3 4






FOR THE TRACEE ROSS ELLIS the creative that captures energ y and surrounds herself in light and nature

1. Free Maiden bracelet by Rashana Miller 2. Tintype portrait session with Emily White 3. Wallet from AMFM by Ali Mohr-Ferguson Martin 4. Earrings from Molly Virginia Made by Molly Virginia Campbell 5. Earrings by Susan Elnora

FOR THE REESE WITHERSPOON the ride-or-die bff that brightens any room she enters

1. Bracelets from Kamili by Britta Kelley 2. Mosaic from Phoenix Handcraft by Johannah Willsey 3. Apron from HandyMa’am Goods by Bella Weinstein 4. Coloring book by Unicia R.Buster 5. Earrings from Heartily by Nina Zabal 6. Wallet from AMFM by Ali Mohr-Ferguson Martin

6. Ring from Sun & Selene by Brittanny Chanel Deraffele 7. Candle from Na Nin by Kate Jennings



ELIZABETH FEW STUDIO · Elizabeth Few HANDYMA’AM GOODS · Bella Weinstein TOP STITCH · Lisa Hutchinson KB STITCHES · Kate Bruce AMFM STORE · Ali Mohr-Ferguson Martin AWL SNAP · Erin McRoberts LEATHERWOOLLINEN · Stewart Allen OPEN STUDIO · Mel Calabro TUPELO FIBER & DESIGN · Justine McFarland EMERALD & FIG · Emmie McMackin LITTLE FOX YARN · Aimee Richardson Sulser




HANDYMA’AM words Rebecca Edwards

Bella Weinstein is a woman who is not afraid to get her hands dirty. As a hairdresser, motorcyclist, prop stylist and general handy lady, she found herself in need of a garment that fit her petite frame and worked for her trade-heavy environment. “I was naive enough to think ‘I can solve this problem,’” Bella says with a laugh. “I wanted to make something of quality that filled that gap. Handyma’am was created to support women who work with their hands.” The business launched in 2015 with the Coverall. “I wanted the brand to represent strength and self-reliance. And, I felt like the Coverall demonstrated that.”


Elizabeth Few Studio


Local artist Elizabeth Few uses silk, a “miracle fiber” that’s been around for nearly 5,000 years. Elizabeth’s work has always involved using natural elements that have a story to tell, and then piecing them together to create a composition that showcases a new story. This is true of her line of textiles, Leizu, named for the empress who discovered silk. “The silks tell a story about the sun, the moon, and the rain that all played a role in helping to grow the botanicals that I use to dye the silks. Ideally what I create becomes part of someone’s daily life, creating yet another layer of connection.”

crepe myrtle, coreopsis, marigolds, and whatever else they could find with rich, bold color. That moment of sprinkling flowers across silk with her daughter established the very beginnings of Elizabeth’s signature Leizu line, which now includes silk pillowcases, duvet covers, throw blankets, kimonos, lingerie, sleep masks, and soon, sheets. “I feel that Leizu is an homage to nature, both through the use of natural fibers, like silk, and the botanicals used to create the dyes.”

At a time when Elizabeth felt most deprived of time to care for herself, a friend sent her a silk baby blanket for her daughter, Marlowe. She would drape it across her pillow at night and noticed the comfort and pleasure that it brought, especially when Marlowe slept. Six years later, mom and daughter worked together to create the very first silk pillowcase sample using roses,

WHERE TO FIND Elizabeth Few Studio · 82

Elizabeth was initially drawn to silk for its luxurious texture, but admires the healthgiving properties that support the skin and body while sleeping. Elizabeth says, “There is intention behind its pure beauty—antiaging, antimicrobial, hypoallergenic, and wonderful at controlling body temperature to elevate the quality and enjoyment of sleep. “Silk is the perfect symbol of femininity. It’s soft and nurturing, and yet a single strand is as strong as steel thread.”

@elizabethfewstudio · elizabethfewstudio.com


Handyma’am Goods

“That first year was learning as much as I could, as quickly as I could. There was a lot of trial and error,” she says. Bella set up shop initially in New York City, which gave her lots of access to the fashion industry. She connected with a friend and technical designer who helped make Bella’s vision a reality. “I drew out the garment. She helped me create the fit.” When sharing advice for those thinking of launching a new venture, Bells says, “really think about whether you want to do this and how much time you can devote. It could take years to realize your investment.” She suggests finding a community of other entrepreneurs who have similar business models—from industry to size—to bounce ideas off of, and to have a cushion. For those who have any budget room, invest in help. “Don’t be afraid to hire someone. Working yourself into the ground is not sustainable. Those things you’re putting off? Pay someone to do it.” Bella closes with, “the only reason I’m here right now is that I trusted my gut and had enough drive to keep going.” Look out for the line’s newest item, Overalls.

WHERE TO FIND Handyma’am Goods @handymaamgoods · handymaamgoods.com


With her killer sense of style and business savvy, Kate Bruce disrupts the outdated image of a seamstress. You will find Kate on a retro-goth Instagram feed, not at the neighborhood strip mall. Yes, she’s the one with the needle-holding skeleton and the “resurrecting denim since 2014” logo. Refreshingly non-commercial, Kate breathes life into all that she touches, which includes her client’s landfill-bound, ripped denim. Kate describes it as “a cross between a female version of James Dean and industrial goth”. Kate learned to sew from her grandmother when she was 3 years old. Kate masterfully commands a classic Singer 47W70 darning machine, which allows full control of the stitch length and fabric feed, not readily available on modern units. She fashions micro-stitched, authentic repairs that are virtually invisible. While Kate firmly believes that she will always be a seamstress, she is currently fulfilling nursing school prerequisites and sewing projects that include a contract with an interior designer and New York-based Self Edge.

Kate Bruce of KB Stitches asked Lisa Hutchinson the following questions. Find Lisa online and at Verdalina and other collaborative main street popups around Richmond. What is your favorite thing to mend? Mending anything makes me really happy, because it will stay out of the landfill and in circulation. Top Stitch was definitely born out of a desire for sustainable living, combined with a desire to serve my community. Picking a favorite is hard to pinpoint; anything with a story or sentimental value is extra special to me. I love to talk to people, connect one-on-one and get to know them through their fabrics and textiles. I also have a soft spot for vintage items. I have been collecting vintage since I was a kid; and it always draws me in.

Lisa Hutchinson of Top Stitches asked Kate Bruce the following questions. How did you land on denim as your specialty? I fell in love with making jeans and working with denim in college through fashion design, but repairing them came by an accident. Jeans have always been my favorite article of clothing to wear since 4th grade. Denim became my preferred fabric to work with due to the beauty of Japanese denim.

Why do you prefer hand sewing over machine sewing? I look at hand sewing as the basis for all sewing. Stitching a foundation in this way helps you build and grow from there. It is so freeing to go back to basics and not need electricity or machinery to accomplish a repair. It’s instant satisfaction from your own fingertips.


Top Stitch

Who taught you how to sew, and what was the first thing you made? My mom taught me to sew when I was 11. She was a home economics teacher at the time. I learned on her 1960s Sears Kenmore, which I still have in my work space. She taught me to follow a pattern around the same time. I was hooked, and the first thing I made was a pair of the widest leg pants you have ever seen— they were orange and blue floral and fit right in to my middle school closet of retro printed 60s and 70s clothes. So, pretty much nothing has changed. If you had a free week and unlimited supplies, what would you sew for yourself? What a dreamy question! I would make a couple of easy to wear and care for dresses and separates out of amazing, colorful vintage yardage. I’m imagining some more wide leg high-waisted pants, wrap tops, halters and shifts. There would probably be lots of pockets and pom-poms involved too. The bright scraps could be woven into a wall hanging afterwards, so that all the materials were put to use. Describe your dream sewing studio. Definitely a spacious room with old-school machines in every color and tons of natural light flowing in. It would function as a zero-waste and eco-friendly space. It would provide sewing jobs to other Richmonders who are motivated by sustainable practices and keeping clothes in circulation. Oh...and tons of hidden storage for organization where all the supplies are easily sorted and found, and a self-vacuuming floor!

WHERE TO FIND Top Stitch · topstitchmending.com 84



Top Stitch + KB Stitches

In 2016, a two-month road trip kickstarted Lisa Hutchinson’s transition to full-time mobile seamstress. Her mending business, Top Stitch, is based on alternative repairs and clothing restoration. The overall goal is to reduce the volume of textiles overwhelming our nation’s landfills. Her vision is low impact lifestyle of zero waste. For Lisa, there is a “direct correlation in taking care of the environment and helping people care for their clothing.” With involvement in the Ethical Style Collective, her focus is shifting consumer mindset to being comfortable and accepting visible repairs. For Lisa, “blemishes are a reflection of the life of garment well worn.”

Why repairs, instead of designing and producing something new? My repair skills sort of came about accidentally, but I used to make jeans and got tired of producing the same exact thing. I enjoy giving worn jeans new life, while keeping fabric out of landfills, and I understand how much someone can love their favorite pair of jeans. What projects get you the most excited and why? Nondenim projects that get me the most excited are making dresses out of vintage sheets and fabrics, because I’ve made some of my own clothes since middle school. I also like altering my own clothes from thrift stores if they’re easy fixes. KAT E BR UC E

KB Stitches

What is your favorite aspect of repairing denim pieces or the process? The darning itself is my favorite part of the denim repair process. I also like taking before and after photos because the after still amazes me with challenging repairs. Seeing how excited people are when they receive their repaired jeans is what keeps me going. Can you describe your dream sewing studio? My dream sewing studio would be in an old warehouse with concrete floors and huge windows with lots of light, big cutting tables, and all of the holy grail black head sewing machines that have been on my list. And soundproof walls, so that I can blast music.


@kb_stitches 85


words Megan Marconyak

Soft and buttery, with that luxe look... there’s no denying the appeal of designer leather. You might think you need to hop a plane to Milan (or at least New York City) to snag a handmade designer bag, but that’s not the case. These three designers are creating their own amazing leather lines right here in Richmond, Virginia.




Awl Snap


AmFm Store

Passion Meets Perseverance: Awl Snap

Streamlined & Stylish: LeatherWoolLinen

It all started in 2009 when a friend gave designer-leather-obsessed Erin McRoberts some leather scraps, and she whipped up her own purse. Many compliments later, she took a week off from work and launched Awl Snap part-time via an Etsy store.

Stewart Allen has always been creative and entrepreneurial—you might remember her from another popular business, The Yarn Lounge in Carytown. After taking a class in leather work, she began making bags she couldn’t find in stores and officially started LeatherWoolLinen in 2015.

The bags kept selling and she kept restocking, taking the business full-time in 2013. Erin had to cut back on spending and get a second roommate to make the transition. She also picked up a parttime job with a photographer, who later became a mentor. “I was able to cover some expenses and learn about running a business,” she says.

“My style is minimal. There’s nothing extraneous,” she says. “Everything that’s in or on the bags has a purpose. They are simple styles you can use season to season and year after year.”

After selling mainly online and at shows, Erin opened a studio in the Fan this year. She’s also working on a wholesale line. Next on the agenda is refining her top-selling pieces styles, and growing her collection. She’s also thinking about a system to help customers customize her pieces with color choices and add-ons like pockets and zippers. WHERE TO FIND Awl Snap ∙ awlsnap.com 86


While many leather workers depend on machines, Allen often incorporates hand sewing. Being selfsufficient is an important part of everything Stewart does, and it shows through in her simple yet elegant, utilitarian designs. “I want to be able to make what I use, and use what I make,” she says.

WHERE TO FIND LeatherWoolLinen @leatherwoollinen ∙ leatherwoollinen.com

Posh Yet P ractical: AmFm Store After studying design at Virginia Commonwealth University, Ali Martin got a regular job in her hometown of Lynchburg, but Richmond and her creative spirit kept calling to her. Finally, she moved back, getting a job with Awl Snap. In 2015, she decided it was time to branch out on her own and explore her own designs. She has taken AmFm Store from hobby to fulltime business. “Most of my design inspiration comes from a bag I see that has something on it that doesn’t seem practical,” Ali says. “I like to design accessories that meet my needs.” In addition to an Etsy store, she sells her designs at the South of the James Farmers Market. “It’s a great place to get quick feedback,” she says. “I also get lots of custom requests. Sometimes I modify the styles and keep them in my collection.”

WHERE TO FIND AmFm Store ∙ @amfm_store @amfmstore ∙ etsy.com/shop/AliMFerguson 87


Open Studio

Little Fox Yarn




words Elizabeth Cogar

For those who love to knit and crochet with natural fibers, the last few years have offered an eye-popping adventure in color. Handdyed yarn is not new, but recently artists have taken the art in interesting directions. Colors are more nuanced and skeins (a length of yarn, loosely coiled and knotted) often feature a variety of tones and textures.

OPEN STUDIO words Marissa Hermanson

With a background in creative advertising, it’s no surprise to find out that Mel Calabro has always had a penchant for aesthetics. Growing up, she expressed herself through dance. In high school, she turned to photography. At Virginia Commonwealth University, it was advertising. Mel is the fiber artist behind Open Studio. She took on macramé weaving as a hobby in 2013, before the 1970s-era handcraft had its major comeback. She taught herself hand-knotting and braiding techniques at home, reading books and watching tutorials. Her first piece, a geometric pink ombré wall hanging, now hangs above her bed. Her woven creations consist of wall hangings secured on metal pipes, plant hangers, and decorative tassels made from a natural cotton rope. Some of her macramé pieces are dyed indigo; others incorporate petrified wood and crystals. While Mel can crank out a handful of woven plant hangers and tassels in a day, her elaborate wall hangings require more dexterity, time and attention, sometimes taking eight hours to produce. “It’s a good obsessivecompulsive outlet,” she says with a laugh. Since February, the fiber artist has worked out of the nonprofit art center Studio Two

WHERE TO FIND Open Studio · 88

Three in Scott’s Addition, which is around the bend from Arts & Letters Creative Co., where she is an assistant producer. After taking a year to focus on her textile business, Mel is back working full-time in the advertising world. Rather than detract from her weaving, the new gig has helped her become more intentional with her craft. “I’m more inclined to make stuff if I have another job,” she says. Before finding weaving, Mel worked with fiber in a different light. Out of college, she worked for Anthropologie, and it was there where she saw the importance of the DIY aesthetic and visual experiences. “It was the first time in my adult life where I was connecting with women in a new way,” she recalls. From there she moved on to Ledbury, where she stayed for five years, eventually working her way into a creative production role. She hit her stride professionally, but at the same time, she felt a feminine void. “This hobby grew out of needing to get back to that,” she says. “There is definitely a fem vibe to it.” This season Mel will focus on commissions and larger custom pieces. She also will be incorporating organic designs and black dye into her weaving for a more natural aesthetic.

@shopopenstudio · shopopenstudio.com

Joining in on the thrill of concocting colors for crafters to enjoy are interior designer and knitter Aimee Richardson Sulser and her husband Brian, a musician, who are cooking up their own brand of hand-dyed yarn in their Mechanicsville kitchen. Playfully called Little Foxes, after family chihuahuas Rosie and Mabel, their wool is available online and in several shops, including Dances with Wool in Midlothian. “For a fairly long time, I’d been wanting to try dyeing,” Aimee says. “I’d spent a lot of time thinking about color. In 2014, I started out experimenting with food coloring and fell in love with the idea of creating color. It’s a little like being a mad scientist.” When Aimee and Brian are in production mode, their kitchen is covered with as many as 10 simmering pots containing three skeins each. “We’re on the path to dyeing full-time,” she says. “At this point we both need to be involved with the process.” The results are beautifully subtle tonal hues with intriguing names like Pixie Dust, Otherwise Engaged and Hen of the Wood.

“I love the creativity and flexibility of having my own business. To be an entrepreneur, you have to love what you do because it’s a lot of work,” Aimee says. What’s most gratifying is seeing their yarn in use. A Texas customer recently sent a note about what she uses it for. “She makes wraps and little blankets for newborn baby photographs and she sent one of the photos. I loved seeing it… that’s our yarn wrapped around an amazing baby!”

WHERE TO FIND Little Fox Yarn ·

@littlefoxyarn · littlefoxyarn.com 89



Emerald & Fig Designs • “Greetings from”: backstitch with three strands of DMC 931 • Hand outline: backstitch with one strand of DMC 310 Place the fabric: Trim your fabric so that it will fit nicely in the • Branch: backstitch with six strands of DMC 840 hoop with a few inches to spare all the way around. (This • Flower petals: Long and short stitches with three strands excess will be used when you finish the back of the hoop.) each of DMC 352, 818, and Ecru. For a simpler Loosen the screw at the top of the embroidery hoop and alternative, you could use satin stitch in a single color for Please is the work of the Emerald You may not resell the pattern or your separate the outernote: hoopThis frompattern the inner hoop. Lay inner & Fig Designs. the petals. finished artwork. hoop on a flat surface, center your fabric on top of it, then • Flower centers: French knots using six strands of DMC 3819 place the outer hoop on top so that the fabric is in between • Leaves: Satin stitch using six strands of DMC 470 the inner and outer hoops. Tighten the screw and pull the • “Richmond”: Whipped backstitch in DMC 931, using fabric taut. six strands for the backstitch and three strands for the whipping. You could also forgo the whipping and just Transfer the pattern: Visit bsidecollective.com to download a use backstitch. copy of the pattern. Print the pattern, cut it out so that it fits inside the hoop, and then tape it to the backside of the fabric. Rinse: This step is only necessary if you used a water-soluble Next, trace the pattern onto the fabric using your transfer pen. pen to transfer the pattern. Remove the fabric from the hoop INSTRUCTIONS

EMERALD & FIG On a whim a few years ago, Emmie McMackin purchased an embroidery wall hanging kit at a big box retailer. Quickly hooked, she started making hand embroidery hoop art as gifts. When custom hoop requests began Emmie decided it was time to open an Etsy shop. Launched in May 2017, Emerald & Fig Designs offers a variety of ready-to-ship embroidery pieces, as well as DIY kits and downloadable patterns. Emmie mixes pop culture elements and feminism with traditional motifs for a modern take on embroidery art. With over 32.2K followers on Instagram, Emerald & Fig is a passionate side gig while Emmie works full-time for a strategic communications firm in Richmond.

SUPPLIES • Six-inch embroidery hoop • Fabric (Kona cotton is my favorite) • DMC embroidery floss in the following colors: 310 Black, 352 Pale Coral, 470 Light Avocado Green, 818 Baby Pink, 840 Medium Beige Brown, 931 Medium Antique Blue, 3819 Light Moss Green, and Ecru. • Size 5 embroidery needle • Water-soluble transfer pen • Scissors • Optional items: Needle threader, glue for finishing your hoop You can also visit emeraldandfig.etsy. com to purchase a complete kit for this design that includes pre-printed fabric, floss, needle, and hoop.

WHERE TO FIND Emerald & Fig Designs ·

Thread the needle: Choose the floss that you want to start with and cut off a piece about 12 to 18 inches long. You want the floss to be long enough to work with, but if it’s too long, it can end up in knots. You can use a needle-threader to thread the needle, but it’s not necessary. Make sure you have a few inches hanging through the eye of the needle so that the floss doesn’t slip out as you’re stitching. A standard thread of embroidery floss has six individual strands. Some of the stitches in this design use all six strands, but some require you to split the strands for a finer looking stitch. Stitch: This design uses backstitch, whipped backstitch, satin stitch, long and short stitch, and French knots. If you’re not familiar with these stitches, I recommend searching YouTube for the name of the stitch. There are many wonderful tutorials available online.

and run it under warm water until your pen marks disappear. Gently squeeze out the excess water and hang to dry. Finish your hoop: First, make sure that your design is centered in the hoop and that the fabric is nice and tight. Next, trim away any excess fabric, leaving about half an inch of fabric outside the hoop. Sparingly apply glue all the way around the edge of the extra fabric, making sure that you’re keeping the glue close to the hoop. Press the fabric onto the inner edge of the hoop, making sure that it’s tight as you go all the way around the hoop. I hope you enjoyed this pattern. You can tag your photos on Instagram with @emeraldandfigdesigns. She would love to see your work!

@emeraldandfigdesigns · emeraldandfig.etsy.com Please note: This pattern is the work of Emerald & Fig Designs. You may not resell the pattern or your finished artwork.



Tupelo Fiber & Design



TUPELO FIBER & DESIGN words Marissa Hermanson

While Justine McFarland is first and foremost a fiber artist, she also is a graphic designer, a photographer, a book maker, and a flower farmer. You might even call her a budding chemist when you hear her wax poetic about creating natural dyes from the flowers she grows on her farm. Last year, Justine and her husband Aaron moved to Richmond from Vermont, where they were organic farmers, growing flowers and Christmas trees. Feeling the call of the country, the duo recently settled outside of Urbanna on a sevenacre plot of land, which they’re turning into a flower farm. Just down the road in Gloucester, McFarland has set up shop for her fiber business at her parent’s home. Sustainable farming and embracing the “sheep to shawl” movement is part of Justine’s mantra While she and her husband are growing flowers to sell, McFarland is also using them to create natural dyes for her textiles. Today, she runs Tupelo Fiber & Design. Her line of handmade wares—which includes her signature Campfire Blanket and an array of fine table linens like tea towels, placemats, and table runners—are

WHERE TO FIND Tupelo Fiber & Design · @tupelofiber · tupelofiberanddesign.com 92

made from organic fibers like merino wool, alpaca, cotton, linen and cottolin. She weaves her Campfire Blanket on a large vintage loom, named Frigga after the Norse goddess of love. The blanket, which she says is the perfect size with which to swaddle yourself in on a crisp fall evening, is inspired by her love for the great outdoors. Justine attended the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, where she received degrees in both photography and graphic design. But it wasn’t until the summer before her senior year that she fell in love with textiles. She took a summer internship teaching photography at The Putney School, an independent high school in Vermont. During her teaching breaks she hung out in the fiber studio, and her love for weaving exploded from there. While she was in college, Justine felt a void in her creative life. “I needed something that had a function other than hanging a picture on a wall,” she says. “And then I hit the weaving, and was like, ‘This is it. This is art. This is function. This is what I need.’”

@tupelofiberanddesign 93



In the Company of Women: Inspiration and Advice from ov er 100 Makers, Artists, and Entrepre neurs The book gives voice to over 100 creative, driven women and the stories they have to tell. Plus, it’s a visual stun ner—real women! Amazing photography! Incredible spaces!

rnadette: A Novel Where’d You Go, Be a heartwarming and for If you’re in the mood strung together using witty read, a narrative s, , and even doctors’ bill letters, articles, emails ary libr al loc r you m fro go check out this book and give it a read.


Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fea r Winter is the perfect tim e for self-reflection and growth, both person al and professional. Go ahead and start tha t new hobby, take a risk, make a new frie nd, pursue that new career. This book gives you permission to be imperfect and encour ages authenticity.




MOTHER SHRUB · Meredyth Archer THREE SISTERS CHEESE STRAWS · Elizabeth Crowley, Peanut Kempe and Ann Kamps Taliaferro CANDY VALLEY CAKE CO. · Keya Wingfield



Looking for a delightful, liquid refreshment? Meredyth Archer shares two wintry cocktail recipes that include a splash of Mother Shrub, her handcrafted, award-winning drinking vinegar. The word shrub is derived from the Arabic word sharab, which means beverage or drink. Shrub is a tart and sweet, fruity, vinegar-based syrup for use in cocktails and sodas and cooking. From its ancient origins in Persia and Turkey, this “drinking vinegar” traversed the pond via European sailors, to prevent scurvy. This popular colonial American libation waned with the Prohibition era, but is experiencing a modern mixology revival.



Food writer Betty Fussell says that “personal and cultural memories are so integral to eating and speaking that simply to name a food is to invoke the lifetime of a person—and a culture.” The women of Three Sisters Cheese Straws can relate to Fussell’s sentiment. For Ann Kamps Taliaferro, Elizabeth Crowley, and Peanut Kempe, simply saying the words “cheese straw” brings to mind decades of memories and nostalgia around the table. These three friends bought the business from Elizabeth’s motherin-law, Peggy Crowley, and her two sisters, Isabel Bates and Alice Frankovitch, in the spring of 2018. With a strong belief that life’s most important moments involve food, their hope is to keep the Southern tradition of the cheese straw alive, while also modernizing the buttery, savory snack. Why is Richmond a great place to start a business? Peanut: The Richmond community is so strong and other entrepreneurs have been so helpful. There’s a real “it takes a village” type of mentality here. Plus, it’s a growing city that appreciates a traditional product with a new flair.

1/2 oz shrub, Black Cherry or Cranberry 3–4 oz champagne, prosecco or white wine

Add shrub to champagne glass. Top with chilled wine or bubbly of choice. Garnish with a cranberry.

1 1/2 oz vodka 1/2 oz Salted Honey shrub 3/4 oz lemon juice or 1/2 fresh squeezed lemon 1/2 oz orange liqueur

Add ingredients to an ice filled shaker. Shake well and pour into glass. Mocktail Option: substitute 3–4 oz sparkling water, ginger ale or specialty mixer like Navy Hill Original, Juniper, or Ginger.


@mothershrub · mothershrub.com

What is the most rewarding part about owning your company? Elizabeth: Making people happy with food. We love hearing customer stories about how our cheese straws have been a part of meaningful moments in their lives. We also love being able to honor a tradition. The biggest compliment for us is when someone says our product tastes just like their grandmother’s.


Three Sisters Cheese Straws

What characteristic do you most admire in other creative women? Ann Kamps: It’s inspiring to see women who are willing to take a risk to do something they believe in. It takes so much drive to own a small business. It’s hard but rewarding work.

WHERE TO FIND Three Sisters Cheese Straws · @3sisterscheesestraws · 3sisterscheesestraws.com 99



Candy Valley Cake Co.

CANDY VALLEY CAKE CO. interview Shannon Essad

Keya Wingfield’s cake pops are as vibrant as her personality. The owner of Candy Valley Cake Co., Keya moved from Bombay, India to the United States in 2007 to marry her husband David. As she made Richmond her new home, she noticed that baking was a much bigger part of American culture than it was in India, and began exploring all she could do with her oven. As Keya’s love for all things baking grew, so did her affinity for mini-desserts—specifically, the cake pop. Keya brings her fun-loving nature and sense of humor to her cake pop creations. They come in all shapes and sizes ranging from the classic sphere, to whimsical designs like unicorns, avocado toast, and holiday favorites like the Abominable Snowman and often-overlooked Mrs. Claus. There isn’t an idea that Keya’s afraid of. What advice were you given when you were first starting out? Quit. I started during the recession and people told me not to move forward. I’m so glad I did it anyway. You have to have a streak of crazy to be an entrepreneur and you can’t overthink it. What inspires you? Bombay. It’s a melting pot of culture and I want my offering to be as diverse and colorful as the city. What motivates you to be yourself and do what you love? Being a woman and an immigrant. Sometimes it’s an uphill battle, but I’ve found that overcoming challenges is very motivating. Plus, it’s a beautiful time to be an immigrant. It doesn’t feel like a drawback anymore. Why do you like being in the food industry? Food connects everything. It’s fun to think about how many celebrations I’ve been a part of through this business.

WHERE TO FIND Candy Valley Cake Co. · 100

@candyvalleycake ·

@candyvalleyrva · candyvalleycakecompany.com 101


In the blink of an eye, a business logo casts visually rich messages that enhance brand awareness, distinguishability, and customer loyalty. Behind Richmond’s well recognized and iconic logos are unsung makers rarely mentioned in the press. Bethany Silva Miller, owner of Guestroom Creative, is one of those creative designers. Bethany specializes in sleek marketing collateral, branding and wedding stationery, and her work can be seen at The Broad, Holy Chic, the Hive Wedding Collective, Rebelle Con, Cultivate Wedding Co., and Scoop. We asked Bethany to deconstruct of one her most recent creations and provide a little logo design insight. A DECONSTRUCTION OF SCOOP With Scoop, an ice cream parlor located in the Fan, owner Morgan Botwinick wanted a logo similar to its sister brand Whisk, a Shockoe Bottom bakery. With Scoop’s logo, we reversed Whisk’s color scheme from a black and white logo with pink accents to predominantly pink. We captured a clean, modern look with a splash of fun and whimsicalness through a bold, capitalized sans-serif script paired with a vintage graphic of an ice cream scoop. It conveys the message that Scoop is a modern twist on the classic, old-fashioned neighborhood scoop shop.


Guestroom Creative Emily Herr is a Richmond native who creates custom hand-painted murals at home and on the road under the name HerrSuite. She specializes in careful context-based designs with bright and playful imagery. Painting murals is an excuse to explore new settings for visual art, work closely with a variety of people, and push her physical and creative limits. WHERE TO FIND Herr Suite ·

DON’T: • Follow trends. Make your brand lasting. Keep it simple, yet unique. • Change your logo too often. Your audience craves consistency. • Choose something just because you like it. Make it resonate with your ideal and defined audience/client. DO: • Use color psychology to evoke emotions that can be tied to your brand. • Use typefaces that fit your tone and industry. • Have multiple logo variations. Your logo will be used in many different places, sizes and backgrounds, and you’ll need a variety of versions to adapt.

FIND THE RIGHT DESIGNER 1. Make the investment. Branding is one of the most important things a business should have. It is more than a logo, colors, and font. A good designer researches not only their client, but also their potential customers and their competitors. 2. A good designer will either have a detailed consultation, send you an in-depth questionnaire, or both. We cannot meet your needs without knowing the details. 3. Select a designer based on their style. Find the right fit for your business.

WHERE TO FIND Guestroom Creative · 102


@herrsuite ·

@herrsuite.murals · herrsuite.com


Herr Suite


@guestroomcreative · guestroomcreative.com 103

Curious where you can find the aforementioned Richmond makers' goods? Aside from their online stores and local markets, we've collected a few the amazing shops around town that support local makers.


#loveYOU 9200 Stony Point Pkwy, Richmond hashtagloveyourva.com

Outpost 4813 Forest Hill Ave, Richmond outpostrichmond.com

Boketto Wellness 106 N Vine St Floor 1, Richmond bokettowellness.com

Mongrel 2924 W Cary St, Richmond mongrelrva.com

Studio Two Three 3300 W Clay St, Richmond studiotwothree.org

Accoutre 1710 Altamont Ave, Richmond accoutrerichmond.com

Quirk 201 W Broad St, Richmond quirkgallery.com

Strawberry Fields Flowers & Finds 423 Strawberry St, Richmond strawberryfieldsflowersandfinds.com

Dear Neighbor 2415 Jefferson Ave, Richmond shopdearneighbor.com

Pomona 2025 Venable St, Richmond gathergarden.com



Ramsey Buskey @girlsforachange

Kya Carter @girlsforachange

Elizabeth Cogar @ecogar

Christina Dick @tiramisuforbreakfastblog

Rebecca Edwards @bextoyou

Shannon Essad @therichmondtable

Marissa Hermanson @marissamoomaw

Angela Kay Huckstep @theangeloid

Megan Marconyak @meganmarcostyle

Anna Moyer Moriah @sugarandsassfras

Shannon Siriano Greenwood @ssiriano

Robin Rison Ashworth @robinashworthrva

Cheyenne Varner @cheyvarner

Allison Walton @allisonrwalton

Brittany Jezouit, Volume 3 Editor @brittanyjezouit


To place an ad or sponsor B SIDE, contact ads@bsidecollective.com bsidecollective.com · hello@bsidecollective.com · @bsidecollectivemedia 106


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