Meet Felton Edward Kizer, a creative director, publisher, and co-founder of Monday Coffee Company. If you're at all involved in the Chicago creative community, then you've met or know of Felton. His creative energy is infectious and his taste is top-notch, propelling him to work on many projects and outlets, all of which are beloved by his community.
As someone of so many talents, we're excited for you to learn a little bit more about his story and values that drive all of his work.
Hi Felton! Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hi there, I’m Felton Edward Kizer, or Kizer is just fine. I’m the Creative Director & Publisher of Off-Kilter and the CCO of Monday Coffee. By trade and first love, I’m a portrait photographer. I’m a Taurus Sun, Leo Rising, and Libra Moon.
What did you love as a child? How do you nurture your inner child?
I loved musicals, magic, romance, and the supernatural as a child. I often daydream about these things; they help keep me inspired and curious.
Felton, you’re a true multi-hyphenate! What draws you to working on so many businesses and projects in a variety of mediums?
I’m always asking myself, how can I help, and what do people need? Being of service–working in service has always been something I’ve been passionate about. I truly believe the world would be better if everyone asked those questions and sought to answer them.
Could you share with us the beginnings of Off-Kilter? How has it evolved, and what are the different outlets that have grown from the publication?
Off-Kilter started as a solo print publication with a simple mission–inclusion. Back in 2014, I started to notice how the creative industry was starting to monetize and capitalize on “diversity.” It was only about tokenism and not about eradicating racist, homophobic, and misogynist systems. Since then, Off-Kilter has transitioned into a media company with five other titles under our brand.
Do you feel like all of your creative pursuits converge at a center point? Or do they all offer something different to your life?
They all offer something different–they complete my interest. However, aloof, they answer the questions: how can I help, and what do people need?
Where do you find inspiration? Or do you make your own?
Music is my main source of inspiration. I love words. Always have and always will. Songwriters are some of my favorite types of people. Sometimes, I challenge myself with restrictions or being very specific on a POV. I’m always trying new ways to see the world and make things from what’s around me.
When did you start dreaming up Monday Coffee? How has it grown since your 2020 launch?
The idea of working in coffee started in 2018, but early 2020 was when we started bringing the idea to life. Since our launch in October 2020, we’ve completed three residencies around Chicago. We have an outpost where folks can get the Monday cafe experience, and most recently I became a coffee roaster. Back in 2018, I did not see this when I thought about working in coffee, but this is much better than what I thought.
What is your favorite part of the coffee roasting process? Could you walk us through a roasting day for you?
My favorite part of the roasting process is before the coffee is roasted. The roasting process is relatively easy–in physical terms. After I drop the coffee, I’m waiting for popcorn. However, the testing and dreaming of the profile is where the real roasting happens–in my opinion. It’s where the creativity lives. Creativity is a part of who I am. So, I daydream about what experience I want people to have with the roast. I think about how other roasters would roast it. I just started asking alot of questions to ensure I knew my destination. The “average” roasting time is about 7-10 minutes, depending on your destination for that bean. Because, not all beans respond the same way to heat.
How do you take your coffee?
Cold Brew, Black.
If you’re hanging out in Chicago, where can people find you?
They can’t. 🙂But I may or may not be in these spaces around town:
- COE–sitting in the corner drinking cold brew and thinking of romcom ideas.
- Myopic Books– Looking at books and thinking about how many books are too many.
- Marz–eating tacos from Sublime Cociana and drinking a few too many Flower Powers :)
What are you currently loving at Martha Mae?
Wilson Keyring - Enameled
Midori A5 Frame Notebook
Epoca Ballpen Salmon
849 Red Ballpoint Pen
Tiny White Fluted Candlestick Holder