Frankie Baby's Obsession For Printed Ephemera
Women Supporting Women
HERstory Month Interview Series
This month in honor of Women's HERstory Month we are asking a few makers that have supported us from the beginning to share their stories. When women encourage each other incredible things happen!
Lizzie is wearing our Strawberry Smock Top and Red Linen Pants
Lizzie of Frankie Baby has been a big part of Jenny Lemons growth, and we are thrilled to be able to work with such a talented artist. She started this creative business with the help of her husband and cats, Frankie (companies namesake) and Charlie.
She prints her ink, brush lettering and illustrations on recycled paper with a Risograph printer at her studio in the Mission and finishes everything by hand.
Tell us about a woman/women who mentored you or who influenced your business
"I continue to be inspired by all the women-owned businesses around me here in the Bay Area and the ones I follow on social media.
Build your business around something you love; something that is inherently and endlessly interesting to you-Martha Stewart
As an 80s/90s kid, Martha Stewart and all her TV shows inspired me in a lot of ways. I wrote down a quote of hers when I started Frankie Baby that's been on my desk since then: “Build your business around something you love; something that is inherently and endlessly interesting to you.” The idea of maintaining and encouraging curiosity stays with me. Sometimes it’s easy to get in a rut in the daily tasks of running a business and in those moments, it's good to remind yourself WHY you’re doing it, to be interested in it, and know that there’s always more to learn.
I also grew up with a wonderful mom who made all kinds of things: quilts, bread, halloween costumes, gardens, etc. and that influenced me in a major way. She instilled a love for the joy of making and figuring out how to make things. Since then, I’ve also learned that mistakes are part of the process and you definitely aren’t going to get it right all the time."
What advice would you give other women who are interested in starting their own business?
"I often compare business ownership to a roller coaster. Sometimes you’re at the peak and it’s exciting and wonderful and other times you’re at the bottom wondering why you’re doing it at all. It helps me to remind myself that either way, things change. Soak up all the little victories (because they matter!) and remember that when it gets tough, it won’t be that way forever."
What are your favorite writing supplies and why?
"I feel like the number of writing utensils on my desk directly correlates to how much is going on in my brain that day.
I seem to pull a pen or pencil out with every new idea until they’re everywhere!
For lettering and calligraphy, I love Pentel Colorbrush pens. They come in different weights and either pigment or water-based inks, are
Your Tiniest Year project is so amazing and soooo tiny! Can you tell us more about it
"I’m super inspired by Jennie’s embroidery stitch project and, last year, was thinking about starting a daily project in 2020. I’ve always loved miniatures, which I’ve found out is a very common thing since starting The Tiniest Year! There’s something so fascinating and delightful about objects we see or use everyday made miniature.
Initially, I was making and posting them daily on instagram, but I’ve stepped back from social media lately. I’m a total introvert and a fairly private person, so sometimes social media can be overwhelming and unhelpful for me. I’m trying to find a way to use it that it works for me, but for now I’m making tiny things without posting all of them because it’s a fun creative exercise.
Here are some tiny watercolor pencils. I’ve been using actual size watercolor pencils to illustrate a visual journal since we've all been staying home. My inspiration comes from things around me or that I generally think would be really cute made smaller. On Wednesdays, I'd been taking requests from a student at the school where I volunteer. I brought them to her in a little envelope and her reaction was a major weekly highlight. I'm looking forward to those kind of connections again soon!"
Lizzie Knutson Cloward
Lizzie started Frankie Baby in 2016 with the help of her husband Corbin. Named for one of their two super fluffy cats, Frankie Baby is based on a love for the craft of printing and inspiration from the everyday things that make life fun. Though Lizzie took a meandering path (with extended stays/childhood in the Midwest and on the East Coast) to find her way back to her native San Francisco and a career based in graphic design, she’s always had a passion for printed ephemera. She went from collecting stickers as a kid to building a sometimes overflowing collection of paper goods as an adult. Fun fact: she has every greeting card she’s ever been given since the age of 9.
Strawberry Smock Top paired with Red Linen Pants
Grey Eyes Boxy Tee
Written by: Sarah Ogden
Sarah is the Brand and Store Manager of Jenny Lemons. She is a lover of all things cute and is the maker of SMO Ceramics