Building The Brand with Endswell

MSS_building the brand_endswell

We are starting off the New Year with a new speaker series entitled Building the Brand. It will encompass the fields of design and production exploring where the physical meets digital. It is a bimonthly event series where you can gain advice from creative professionals (designers, photographers and architects) who have created a physical product line with a Q&A style panel with them following the talk.

First up are Rachel Gant and Andrew Deming, the designers behind Endswell and Yield Design Co. Endswell is best described as the modern day heirloom. At Endswell they cast solid gold rings from 3-dimensional prints and hand-finishing them to perfection. They believe in creating pieces of value, imbued with meaning, that stand the test of time. They create rings that embody their own beliefs in the importance of good design and responsible sustainable production while respecting the past, yielding to the present and looking forward to the future.

Endswell is the creatives sister company to Yield Design Co. Yield is a San Francisco based design house creating products that pair progressive design with traditional craft. Yield goods are designed to encourage a vibrant lifestyle and to facilitate the better parts of life. Founded by Rachel and Andrew in late 2012, they have crafted numerous collections with a wide material vocabulary, all unified by a distinctive and refined sense of play.


As for Endswell, Rachel Gant and Andrew Deming found their inspiration for their new venture after designing the ‘Infinity’ pair of wedding bands for their close friends. In 2013 they began creating the line of rings that would become Endswell, consisting of rings designed for everyday as well as a “Commitment” collection of non-traditional wedding bands. Each design is a physical translation of a concept or feeling; the Infinity series reveals continuous surfaces and mobius strips to represent the concept of endlessness and the Align series shows a motion in which two pieces meet to become one. Each piece is a delicate balance of rich meaning and minimalist form.

With starting any company, there are unforeseeable challenges, especially when creating a physical product and manufacturing it. With our Building the Brand series, we look to bring you an inside peak of how brands break through the barriers they encounter and creative problem solving they tackle along the way. As a preview of what they will be discussing, we asked Andrew and Rachel what they found to be the most challenging thing about creating their own physical products:

“What we’ve found to be the most challenging is everything outside of the design of the products themselves–designing them has been the fun and easy part. It’s the operational challenges, figuring out the infrastructure that supports the ordering, manufacturing and fulfillment of our goods where we’ve encountered the most difficulty. It’s something we’ve had to learn on the fly, just by making mistakes and correcting. When we created Endswell, we tried to put a lot of what we learned from Yield into practice. We greatly simplified our supply chain and created a model where we didn’t need to go out of pocket to stock a large inventory before we could sell to customers.”

Join us for our founding Building the Brand talk this month at the clubhouse on January 27th to hear more on Endswell, Yield, and this dynamic duo!


Rachel Gant

Rachel earned her Bachelors in Industrial Design following a period of Architecture studies at Cal Poly. Her experience has ranged from a brief stint at the firm of architect Cass Calder Smith, to designing custom products for the playful photo store Photojojo. Rachel’s way of thinking is a bit unexpected, leading to unique pairings of ideas.

Andrew Deming

Andrew is a designer and strategist with a degree in graphic design and an MBA in Design Strategy from CCA. He is also cofounder of the city based experience sharing service Mosey. Prior to starting Yield, Andrew worked Yves Béhar at fuseproject where he took part in designing award-winning projects for clients such as Herman Miller, GE, and Sodastream Source.

Meet our 1st quarter residents

it’s a new year, a new quarter even, and we are pleased to introduce our new residents!

our part time resident is David Anderson


“Hi, I’m David.

I can be loud, but mostly I live a quietly reflective existence. I share more (resources, thoughts) than I probably should. I love digging to the heart of any issue, eschewing binary characterizations, & inserting myself into difficult situations of any kind. Ultimate frisbee is both my primary social fun & exercise. My nickname on (& off) the field is Pug, so feel free to call me that.

For work, I do tech entrepreneurship, as applied to positive change, first in the blogging world, and now in the crowdfunding world. I started & kinda sold, re-acquired, re-sold GreenOptions (2006-2009), started & sold Important Media (2010-2013), am an alumnus of Virgance (2008-09) & early operations at One Block Off The Grid (2009-10). In 2012, I fundraised on Kickstarter for a short, interview-based documentary about the hot springs my family has tried to protect, and shipped it. I helped make multiple prototypes for a crowdfunding platform focused on socially-valuable, long-term projects, called openfire, with its first successful public test runs at SXSW2013. Starting at StartupWeekend Vegas #6, I helped turn that code into a crowdfunding platform for touring musicians, which ended up as TourAlong. Although I consulted for a while on crowdfunding campaigns and related initiatives, I’m currently entirely focused on inspiring people to think of money differently, via my new startup, Trust Labs.



our full time resident is Holley Murchison

Holley M. Bio Photo

Holley Murchison is a social entrepreneur and rhetoric coach using education, food and music as conduits for change. Since 2011, she’s managed operations as founding partner of The Hall Pass Tour; a nationwide concert and events company designed to get underserved youth excited about leveraging higher learning to pursue their dreams.

A native of NYC, her work is centered around creating innovative, sustainable solutions to advance education, help the world communicate better and take (big and small) leaps toward championing and executing their ideas.


Thank you David & Holley! We look forward to seeing the process and collaborations that result from your residency!

Makeshift Brooklyn Meet-and-Greet


It is 2014 which means that Makeshift BK now is looming closer on the horizon!

We are so looking forward to meeting all of you! Because we can not wait until we open our doors in a few months, we will be hosting a meet-and-greet on Thursday, January 30th from 3pm-8pm in NYC. You will have an opportunity to meet the Makeshift crew, fellow friends, and future members. We will be setting up shop for those 5 hours across the street from Makeshift BK’s future location at 66 Hope Cafe in Brooklyn.

We will be ready to answer any questions you may have, lead tours on the hour of the clubhouse that is currently under construction, as well as be accepting sign ups for membership. A membership deposit will guarantee your spot, plus there are no monthly dues until the space is open. Let’s hang!

For more information on the  clubhouse progress follow along with our behind-the-scenes series detailing the entire build-out of Makeshift BK.

Class preview: Surviving Career Change


 Image from Flickr, courtesy of avrene 

Do what you love.

If you’re consistently unhappy at a job that isn’t making good use of your talents and strengths, it’s time to make a change. Life is short.

As Howard Thurman said, “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

Perhaps only a small change is needed to make you come alive. If switching to a different role at your current company does the trick, you’re lucky. But sometimes, a larger leap is called for.

If you’re contemplating changing companies or careers, or if you want to become your own boss, be prepared.

It’s always more challenging than you would expect.

When you’ve been at a job for a while, you know how things operate. It’s predictable. You can often take care of your responsibilities relatively easily while having the security of a steady paycheck.

But when you leap into a career change, either by necessity or because you decide to give up “good enough” for your dream, predictability goes out the window.

As Murphy’s law so optimistically states, “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.”

Nothing goes as planned. Your brilliant career move or business plan doesn’t map to reality. You keep getting rejected. And you’re feeling more and more frustrated, lost, fearful, and out of control.

Overnight success is a myth.

Many of us have absorbed the cultural myth that switching careers should be fast and easy.

We hear stories of billionaire rappers who have reinvented themselves and think that change actually works that way.

It doesn’t. For anyone. If you look closely at any example of “overnight success,” you’ll discover chapter upon chapter of unglamorous effort leading up to the finale of glory and fame.

The problem is, we know what the final destination looks like, but we have very little knowledge about the journey itself.

We need a better understanding of the process of change.

While nobody can predict the exact sequence of events that will happen when you change careers, the process of change is actually quite predictable.

My favorite model of change, developed by Martha Beck, maps out four stages or “squares” of change, and what to do and not to do in the particular stage we’re in.

The final square, called “The Promised Land,” is where you want to end up. Once you’ve reached Square Four, your new career or business is running smoothly, you’re doing creative work that you love, making plenty of money, and have time left over for travel, hobbies, long trips to Italy with your sweetheart, or whatever your heart desires.

But to get there, you have to travel through squares one, two, and three, which are far less sexy.

Square One is called “Death and Rebirth.” It consists of a lot of grieving, confusion, and turmoil. We’re thrown into Square One whenever we initiate a major life change, such as getting laid off or quitting a job.

Square One, uncomfortable as it sounds, is a useful and necessary step in the change process.

If you don’t realize this and think that being in Square One is a big mistake, you’ll be tempted to jump right back into the frying pan of the job you hated, or try to skip ahead to a more fun square. But that would only cause more difficulty.

Come learn more and get some support!

I’ve just given you a taste of this model. Would you like to learn more about this model of change and how it can help you navigate your career change?

Then join me on the evening of January 16th at Makeshift Society for a workshop on Surviving Career Change. Learn more and RSVP here.


Online Store

Cats as coworkers

Cats as coworkers. Photo by Kate Koeppel.

By popular demand, we are making available some of the rewards created for last year’s Kickstarter campaign. We’ve set up an online store over at Square Market. You can purchase a Makeshift-themed kerchief, replete with donuts, by Stewart Scott-Curran, or a silkscreened poster of tools to make shift happen by Kate Bingaman-Burt, or a sturdy silkscreened tote illustrated by Lisa Congdon. Get ’em while they last!

Posted by on January 4, 2014 and tagged with: Retail