Just Okay Things is More Than Okay

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Clever, funny, and industrious, Matt Verdier is the owner of Just Okay Co. and he designs and creates apparel, pins, hats, stickers, and more with his unique and touching style. It’s clear to see that he believes that it’s OK to be OK or not OK and that generally, well, everything will be OK.

Your motto?

Hmm I’ve never really thought about my concise motto. I guess “like attracts like” and “quality over quantity.”

Childhood memento?

I have an entire drawer full of trinkets and sentiments of a simpler time, but the most telling relic of my younger self is an Episode 1 era lightsaber toy I’ve kept

Recent acquisition for your home?

 i just got a bunch of cheap Ikea lamps, the kind that articulate and clamp onto anything, put those things everywhere in my shop and house with some 60-Watt daylight LED bulbs in em. It’s “lit” as they say

Current obsession? 

I just became really interested in the crazy science experiment of brewing coffee. I didn’t like black coffee for the longest time and I realized it was just never made right. I had an amazing pour over recently and was like “oh yeah I see why people are hooked on the go juice.” 

Favorite hobby? 

I wish it wasn’t only a hobby, but I like to write songs and play instruments when I can. My record will be out later this year if all goes smoothly. Also, the occasional video game is great; I still haven’t finished Breath of the Wild.

Always on you - watch, memento, etc? 

There’s this tiny pocket knife that was discontinued sometime in 2012 that I believe is T H E absolute best designed everyday knife ever. It would always be on me if someone hadn’t snatched it after it fell off my pocket in Stardust. (so if your friend got a new knife recently that looks like this please give it back to me, I miss it ☹)

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Favorite neighborhood restaurant?

I love some Briarpatch pancakes when I’m feeling expensive. And I think I’ve cashed in on like 4 free drinks from RoyalTea by now

Favorite museum? Locally, the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art. There’s some amazing stuff in there and I don’t hear it talked about much

Best gift recently received? The only gift I’ve recently received was one of those fancy glass bottles they serve you water from at restaurants, it’s pretty great. 

Most inspiring book you’ve read? Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke. Incredibly beautiful, uplifting, sympathetic prose.

At the top of your to-do list?

I need to finish building out my studio (garage) for better organization and efficiency. I’m also about to start trying to get products into retail locations. 

The thing you most love about your city? 

I really love the amount of small businesses and neighborhood spots in Orlando. There are so many areas where you can feel a real sense of a community supporting itself. Even just from buying a dang taco or loaf of bread. It feels great to have the option of not supporting any franchise or corporate entity and running into at least 1 person you know while doing it. 

Best thing about what you do?

I get to do a healthy balance of manual labor and also sitting at a computer thinking/ creating for hours. When I do pop-ups I get to see my art bring people some joy which is very nice and encouraging.

Favorite drink?

Oh gosh I love beverages, here’s a few current favs: any fruit smoothie from Shaka Shaka Teahouse, Martinelli’s sparkling apple juice, and Owls Brew Wicked Watermelon (it’s like a wheat beer mixed with white tea and watermelon??)

Always in your fridge? Water and berries!

On your nightstand? You gotta have an emergency idea notebook/dream journal. 

A film that holds a special place in your heart?

Spike Jonze’s Where the Wild Things Are will always be special to me. If you haven’t seen it, I would highly recommend the experience. 

A film that you think defines American culture? 

Though it hasn’t aged super well (or maybe too well thematically?) I can’t help but say Mike Judge’s Idiocracy.

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