A hand-picked selection of things to do, seasoned with ideas, stories and people of interest.

Hello Etsy Interviews, Part 3: Tom Hodgkinson

Hello Etsy Tom Hodgkinson

Back in September, we interviewed five speakers at the Hello Etsy conference on small business and sustainability. In the third installment of our series, we present Tom Hodgkinson, editor of the philosophical journal The Idler, and headmaster of London’s Idler Academy. Tom tells us about the possibilities that are unlocked when you break the mold and start creating your own life, and what it’s like to be a Bohemian entrepreneur. 

photo: Tom Hodgkinson |

Tell us about the Idler Academy and its subtitles.
The full title is “The Idler Academy of Philosophy, Husbandry and Merriment: Bookseller, Coffeehouse, School.” So it’s three things. It’s a bookshop with a café attached to it, but we also run courses, events and lectures in old-fashioned subjects. It could be needlework, the study of Latin, grammar or rhetoric, or ancient philosophy. And that’s mixed in with a program of talks by well-known writers. 

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Hello Etsy Interviews, Part 2: Chad Dickerson

Hello Etsy Interview Series Chad Dickerson

At the Hello Etsy conference in September, we interviewed five inspiring people. The second in this series: Chad Dickerson. After studying Shakespeare at university, Chad became a software engineer. Since then, he’s masterminded projects at CNN, Yahoo! and finally at Etsy, where he is now CEO. We talked to Chad about his background, what makes Etsy tick and what hacks can be made to improve the contemporary workplace. 

photo: Chad Dickerson, taken by Stefan Wieland | http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6163/6191380097_9136a2250e_b.jpg

How do you find the startup culture in Berlin?
The startup culture in Berlin is really great. This is only my second trip here, but I’ve heard about Betahaus, and your company. Having lived in San Francisco and now Brooklyn, the creative spirit is very similar in Berlin. The intersection of art, culture and technology that you see in places like San Francisco and New York is completely present here also. It’s exciting. 

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Hello Etsy Interviews, Part 1: Judy Wicks

Hello Etsy Judy Wicks Interview

At the recent Hello Etsy conference on small business and sustainability, we interviewed five inspiring speakers. Among them, the energetic Judy Wicks. She founded Philadelphia’s White Dog Café in 1983, and over the last couple decades, the café has become a model for how to conduct a successful small business both ethically and sustainably.

photo: Judy Wicks |

What is a local living economy?
A local living economy is one in which both natural life and community life are supported. Basic needs - food, renewable energy, sustainable clothing, green building materials - are produced locally or regionally. What the community doesn’t need, or things unique to the community - art, fashion, cheese or wine - can be exported. So it’s not anti-globalization, it’s about having basic needs at home and having global trade that is fair and supports local economies elsewhere. 

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