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Headquarters, a new spiffy coffee shop on Charlotte Pike.

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Warby Parker

If you’re in Nashville this weekend (or one of these cities in the coming weeks) you simply must seek out the Warby Parker school bus which is taking a cross country road trip for the love of their glasses. Not only does this boutique eyewear company sell quality specs priced at $95, but they match every pair bought by distributing another one to someone in need. Money well spent if you ask me!

The decked out bus will be in town until December 9th, so jump on board and let them style you with the perfect pair and maybe pick up another one for under the tree.

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Rolf & Daughters




Decided to take a little break from pesky looming deadlines yesterday, and took a walk down the street to check out the newly opened Rolf & Daughters at Werthen Lofts. Exposed brick, furniture made by HollerDesign’s Matt Alexander (along with his scrap wood which beautifully lines the ceiling), light fixtures by Adam Gatchel and chalk art done by local artists is just a taste of what their gorgeous interior design components have to offer. I haven’t had a moment to check out the food yet, but I have a feeling that won’t disappoint either considering owner Philip Krajeck is a James Beard award-nominated chef with experience cooking at a slew of renowned restaurants across the map.

Be sure to check them out this weekend if you’re looking for a new local hang with great food and drink options.

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The Well


This coffeehouse is different from all the rest in one way: All their profit is given to those in need.

The Well is a non-profit missional Coffeehouse in the Green Hills community in Nashville. We seek to build a community through the Coffeehouse in which those who come for coffee can know that the money they are spending is helping to provide relief to some of the poorest places in the country and the world. The Well will be a hub for local, regional, and global outreach. Come change the world with us.”

Giving back one coffee at a time.

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Last week, I stopped by the shared workspace of Otis James and Emil Erwin at Marathon Village. From the pages of GQ Magazine to the walls of Barneys, their work (while entirely handmade) seems to be featured everywhere these days. You can expect to see much more coming from these two Nashville tastemakers (and back to back Garden & Gun Made in the South Award Winners) for years to come.

Do you have any new projects you’re working on or anything exciting involving your brands you can fill us in on?

Otis: We have a few new caps in the pipeline that will hopefully be out in time for fall. As well, working with Griffin Technology on a collaboration to be sold in London that will be announced soon and a small run of bow ties for Garden & Gun magazine.

Emil: We are finishing up a collaboration with Barneys right now that will come out this August.  I worked with the head of menswear to develop two bags and a couple of belts.  Barneys currently carries our line, but it is very exciting to have that kind of endorsement.  We are also fulfilling a wholesale order for CPH in Switzerland, which is the first international brick and mortar to carry our brand.

What keeps you inspired and intrigued to create new things?

Otis: My inspiration comes from many different sources. I try not to focus too heavily on any of them for too long. Basically, I’m like a filter feeder. I don’t actively pursue any ideas, just let them filter in as they may. Everything about my process is very visceral and in the moment. I don’t follow any blogs or other designers.

Emil: I often find inspiration in strange places.  I’ll be at the convenience store and notice how a rack is assembled and think  “Oh!  That’s how I should put it together.”  I approach all of my designs from a function first standpoint with aesthetics running a close second.  So many everyday items give me ideas so I am always keeping an eye out for ways to create/improve.

If you weren’t compelled to make beautiful ties, hats and leather goods here in Nashville, where would each of you be and what would you be doing?

Otis: I think it’s impossible to say. That would be like peering into an alternate universe.

Emil: I would be running a tow truck business in Hazen Arkansas, although my true passion would be writing lonesome county and western songs.  On Saturdays, I would travel into Little Rock for talent night at Downer’s B&G hoping to catch my break only to be passed on for a younger, “twangier” talent week after week.

Where are your favorite places to go in Nashville? Are there any hidden gems you’re willing to let us in on?

Otis: I go to Mas Tacos at least once a week to eat. Otherwise, I enjoy being anywhere I can go on my bike, whether it’s the greenways or the side streets that weave through town.

 Emil: I am a homebody.  When I’m not in the shop, I love to be at home with my wife and three kids.  Plenty of entertainment there.  Occasionally, we make it out, but I am certainly no authority on the matter.  There are some really skanky looking bars on Gallatin Rd. in Inglewood that I want to try out.  Any takers?

What’s one funny thing about yourself someone would be surprised to know?

Otis: Before I started making ties, I hadn’t owned one myself for at least 3 years.

Emil: Surprising, I don’t know about that, but… In a perfect world, I could gain all my necessary nutrients from cotton candy.  I love cotton candy.

Where do you hope to see your brand in 10 years?

Otis: That’s a really good question. I honestly don’t know. I’ve always preferred to keep myself flexible and adaptable. I have ideas of paths I would like to pursue, but I tend to not put too much weight on future plans. There is too much unpredictability.

Emil: I’d like to have a flagship in Nashville and have relationships with a handful of retailers around the US and elsewhere.

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Loveless Cafe



Confession: I had never been to the Loveless Cafe until yesterday (Three years to get there? Shame on me) but boy was I happy to find that this little Nashville gem lived up to all my expectations. BBQ pork, meatloaf, hush puppies, catfish, fried chicken, country ham, cream corn, fried green tomatoes and the most divine biscuits and preserves is just a taste of what they have to offer. Be prepared for a line but put your name on the list and walk out to all the shops (like Faithful Places and Shimai) that circle around the restaurant and be sure to swing by Hams & Jams Country Market along with the barn.

Perfect mid-afternoon Sunday spot.

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