WELCOME TO EPISODE #62 OF BUSINESS OF CRAFT
My guest today, Louis Boria, is the founder and owner of Brooklyn Boy Knits, a company that produces custom knitwear. In addition to building a thriving business, Louis is on a mission to combine his love of fiber arts with his passion to combat bullying and to champion inclusion and diversity in the fiber arts community. He has been featured in the media like New York 1, CBS News, Reuters and Telemundo. In this show I want to explore with Louis the idea of how unique differences in your personal and business brand can help you to grow your craft business.
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#1 You seem like you’ve emerged in such a big way on the fiber scene in just the past years and I heard that even though you already had your business up and running, you were “discovered” on a NYC subway in 2017 when a celebrity tweeted about you and that tweet went viral. Is that true? [2:31]
#2 Being a man and also a person of color and also a gay man in a mostly white female dominated gives you a really unique brand story. I read that at first, you really didn’t want to emphasize those characteristics as part of the Brooklyn Boy Knits Brand. Walk us through how that changed for you. What happened in that evolution? [7:02]
#3 Sometimes it can be really hard to find a way to stand out when you’re crafting a personal brand story. What advice would you give someone to stand out? [13:23]
#4 You were elected to the Diversity Advisory Board for Soho Publishing. Can you tell us more about your role and this new project? [22:57]
#5 We’re in a really interesting moment in time in the industry where diversity and inclusion issues are front and center and there are so many people who feel a sense of NOT belonging. I’ve heard you share some really eloquent, intelligent thoughts on this issue and I’d love for you to give us your opinion on what you see as the path forward. [31:29]
#6 What are you seeing on Instagram? Is it bullying? [38:35]
#7 And you’re also involved with the Hat not Hate program sponsored by Lion Brand? How does that initiative help address bullying? [40:00]
#8 I always ask a quirky question of guests and since we’re talking about people who perceived you as being strange on the train, I wonder what is the most unusual thing you’ve ever seen on the train? [45:30]