Bodega Ltd. - MN Original Feature
This past year, TPT's Emmy Award winning series MN Original interviewed us about our design philosophies, business and renovation. 

"Inspired by the concept of a neighborhood bodega, the creative team of Liz Gardner and Josef Harris aim to be a one-stop shop for their clients. Working under the name Bodega Ltd., Liz and Josef bring years of experience in the advertising and magazine worlds to each of their projects. Collaboration is a cornerstone of their work with clients, whether they are tasked with branding, social media, styling or product development work."




Because we can’t give up on an underdog, we decided to employ the Kintusgi technique which originated in Japan. It started as a way of repair cups, pots and plates that were broken. By using gold mortar, the vessel became more valuable after it was repaired than when it was pristine.



2018 / in review


There’s an incredible interview floating around the internet with David Bowie titled “How To Be Authentic”. While the word maybe be overused, Bowie’s advice to the artist is timeless:

“Never play to the gallery” he says and “Always go a little further into the water than you feel you’re capable of being in, go a little bit out of your depth and when you don’t feel that your feet are quite touching the bottom, you’re just about in the right place to do something exciting”.

This has always resonated with Bodega Ltd., but this year we really lived it. By taking on a gargantuan renovation of our workspace, hiring new staff and expanding the scale of our projects, there were definitely moments that our feet were not touching. We are grateful to have had the opportunity to expand beyond our comfort zones (yes, plural ><) and even more grateful for the partners + clients we’ve had the pleasure of working with in the past 365 days.

Here are some of our favorite projects + collaborations of the year:


ARCHITECTURAL DIGEST / Our building renovation was featured on Architectural Digest + Clever. From demo to scraping tar paper from original wood floors, to creating a vision with our architect Toby Rapson, this story showed the depth and breadth of the love we have for this place. It’s crazy to look back on all the progress we have made on the space over the year! More here.


NIKE ACG x ERROLSON HUGH / We had the incredible chance to work with Nike on concepting + strategy for the final ACG collection with Errolson Hugh of ACRONYM. More here.


BEYOND HOTDISH at The Walker Art Center / We helped concept, curate and design a panel discussion on the future of food in “The North” with Steve Hoffman, who moderated the conversation. Bringing amazing voices of Hmong Chef Yia Vang, The Wall Street Journal’s Beth Kracklauer, Splendid Table’s Lynn Rosetto Casper; JBF award winners and finalists Beth Dooley and Alex Roberts and Ann Kim of Young Joni, Pizzeria Lola and Hello Pizza to the table to talk about how our region is much more than hotdish. More here.


FAR NORTH SPIRITS + HALLOCK, MN / We worked on two projects in tandem: the branding of the city of Hallock + photos and a website for Far North Spirts. These projects tapped into our love and connection to rural towns and our research reiterated that they are more important than ever to the economic and cultural landscape. The work was featured in Travel + Leisure, The Star Tribune and The Growler.


STYLIST’S GUIDE TO MPLS + ST.PAUL / The Super Bowl was hosted in Minneapolis this year and we wanted to contribute a unique and stylish perspective of our Cities’ for guests who were looking for a little contrast to the standard fare. A collection of peculiarities like an an art deco stairway in the skyway system to old caves that housed gangsters and french cheese — a church built by Saarinen and the legend behind the haunting of Cuzzy’s Bar. This project couldn’t have happened without our dear friend the Hoffmans, The Foundry Home Goods and Franklin Printing.

TINY DEATHS ‘ALWAYS’ / When director Catherine Orchard reached out about working together on a music video for Tiny Deaths ‘Always", we were ecstatic. The concept was modeled around an under construction space and funnily enough, we knew where to find one of those…. shot at and styled by Bodega Ltd with an incredible cast and crew — you can watch it above.


YIA VANG of UNION KITCHEN / Despite being positioned as a Scandinavian outpost, Minnesota has large Somali and Hmong populations that play a significant role in our cultural and gastronomic landscape. That’s why we are so excited to be working with Yia Vang and Union Kitchen to help amplify their story and food.


HOFFMAN HOUSE + BETTER HOMES & GARDENS / We were given the immense privilege to help our friends Steve + Mary Jo Hoffman refine their incredible home for a Better Homes & Gardens photoshoot. It’s was a dream to design to their mindful way of living and also to be able to style it for the shoot with an incredible team. More here.


ALIVE MAGAZINE features BODEGA LTD. / This feature was a surprise and a delight. Their team captured our essence in a way we couldn’t have articulated. More here.


SOBREMESA by SUNDAY SUPPERS / When Karen Mordechai of Sunday Suppers + ila announced that she was hosting a global dinner series, we jumped at the chance to host at Maison Bodega. We love her mission and it was an amazing excuse to host 25 guests for dinner.

Norse_electric_bizcards .jpg

NORSE ELECTRIC / Our electrician is better than your electrician. Ha! But seriously, we lucked out on connecting with Matthew of Norse Electric while working on Maison Bodega. We’ve seen his work first hand (it’s art!) and we had the chance to create a brand and imagery for his precise and artful approach to trade.


OTABO / We have the incredible pleasure of working with international manufacturing company Otabo on visual direction, strategy + public relations. We have amazing things rolling out in 2019 and we can’t wait to see them out in the world.


BORDERLAND / We’re creating a thoughtful and discerning home brand inspired by a collection of antique furniture from pre-communist China. Stay tuned for more development and product updates throughout the 2019.





It took us a few days to process the significance of #sobremesabysundaysuppers. The maiden voyage of our #maisonbodega — this time together was warm, wonderful and human, all the things we hoped to create when we started on our journey of restoring the neglected but extremely special space.

Thanks to @sundaysuppers for allowing us the chance to share your beautiful vision for Sobremesa* and to our amazing friends @maryjohoffman @fancyjanssey @vgirasol @norse_electric @thefoundryhomegoods @retrowanderlust @dustandform @farnorthspirits and Jim + Billie Nelson who made it magical. ✨✨✨.

ABOUT THE MEAL | Designed by Sunday Suppers, our Summer menu is inspired by the season’s bounty. Markets bloom with vibrant greens, berries, tomatoes and stone fruits and warmth surrounds us. In the kitchen, we reach for flavorful ingredients that mimic the intensity of summer — but also for cooling elements to cleanse the palette and refresh. This meal is inspired by the vibrant colors of the season, heat, balance, beauty, taste and our favorite foods to share.

*Sobremesa (n.)

— the time after a meal when the food is gone, but the conversation around the table continues.





“Imperfection takes longer than perfection,” says Milano architect Vincenzo De Cotiis, referring to the process of building renovation. The quote appears Halloween night on the blog of Bodega Ltd., the multidisciplinary lovechild of creatives Liz Gardner and Josef Harris.

While the credo directly refers to the mammoth restoration project that the Minneapolis duo dub “Maison Bodega”— a 100-year-old building purchased last May to transform into a live/work space—it could just as well apply to their ethos at large. In a world airbrushed within an inch of its pixel-ridden life, design can often err toward the slick and pretty; a case of surface over substance, a pantomime of actual style.

Read more here.