Artisan gifts from Georgia for all ages

  • Linda Jerkins
  • For the AJC
7:00 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 Living
cloverandbirch.com
Marietta-based Clover and Birch creates modern wooden toys, including its best-selling activity gym for babies.

When Georgia’s Taylor Melton couldn’t find stylish, sustainably made wood toys for her daughter, she created play pieces with a modern design — and heirloom quality.

The owner & founder: Taylor Melton grew up in Smyrna and graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in business management before launching her business.

The company: Marietta-based Clover & Birch started in 2012. Melton’s company makes children’s products, including activity gyms, teething and grasping toys.

The name: “Clover” is a creative nod to the green nature of the company’s business practices. “Birch” refers to the wood in the company’s products.

What’s popular: Wooden baby gym ($75) painted with eco-friendly paint that’s free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Other favorites: The balance board ($34) and the busy bags ($14) for imaginative play.

Big break: Selected to attend Etsy’s Open Call event in New York last August to pitch its toy line to major retailers, including Macy’s, Whole Foods and giggle.

What’s next: A new product line, including a sleek wooden play kitchen, new teether designs and a modern take on the classic stick horse.

Satchel, a Savannah-based leather goods boutique, likes to say its classic and timeless bags age as gracefully as the people who carry them.

Izzy Hudgins Photography
In Savannah, Satchel makes yummy leather bags and accessories.

The company: Satchel, based in downtown Savannah, started in 2006. The company, with a workshop in the back of its stylish shop, designs and makes quality leather goods, ranging from everyday bags and weekenders to clutches and shotgun cases. The company also offers shoppers the opportunity to design their own bags.

The owner & founder: Elizabeth Seeger, a native of Covington, La., graduated from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in 2005 with a degree in fashion design. The next year, she started Satchel.

What’s popular: Small Stewardess ($260 to $340). The design was inspired by a bag Seeger’s mother made when she was a flight attendant with TWA. The lightweight bag is designed to fold or roll up easily in your suitcase. Also popular: the Elizabeth clutch/wallet ($168 to $190), an all-in-one wallet, clutch and wristlet.

Other favorites: Alison messengers in small and large ($115 to $160).

Claim to fame: The company’s custom leather gun cases were finalists in Garden & Gun magazine’s 2015 “Made in the South Awards.”

Where to buy: For now, call or email the company to order until the website (shopsatchel.com) becomes shoppable in 2018. In Atlanta, find bags in several shops, including B.D. Jefferies, Huff Harrington and Sandpiper in Vinings Jubilee.

Some painters prefer to create big art. Atlanta’s Shana Bowes likes to go small.

The artist: Bowes grew up in metro Atlanta (in Alpharetta), lived in New York City for 18 years, and moved back to metro Atlanta in 2014. She studied art at Oglethorpe University and earned a master’s degree in arts administration from SCAD’s Atlanta campus. The lifelong artist began creating small, simple images that reminded her of her past and the South in her new series, “tiny paintings: BIG CITIES.”

ShanaBowes.com
After returning to Atlanta, artist Shana Bowes began painting small, simple images of Atlanta and Georgia landmarks in her new series, “tiny paintings: BIG CITIES.”

The goods: 8-by-10-inch matted prints ($25). Each print is an exact replica of one of the artist’s 1.5-inch paintings.

What’s popular: Krispy Kreme, the UGA Arch and the Georgia Tech Tower.

Big break: Having her originals for sale in the Swan Coach House Gallery show “Little Things Mean a Lot,” through Dec. 30.

What’s next: Savannah landmarks.

Where to buyshanabowes.com. In Atlanta, find the prints at various shops, including the new Upper Westside Connection; Tuxedo Pharmacy; The Collective; Kudzu & Company; and Piper Lillies in Johns Creek.

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