It was a cold Rhode Island winter in 2010 that led Courtney Church to start scanning the Periodic Table of Elements. She wasn’t looking to bone up on her chem savvy; she just had the sudden urge to try to create words and phrases using the one and two-letter abbreviations of the elements’ names. Little did she know, this fun pastime would soon become the basis for a nerd-chic apparel and servingware brand she calls Periodically Inspired.
By combining Ba (Barium), B (Boron), Y (Yttrium), Ge (Germanium), Ni (Nickel), U (Uranium), and S (Sulfur), the first phrase Courtney came up with was BaBY GeNiUS. She told WYSK, “My only intention at the time was to print that phrase on onesies as a hobby while maintaining my full-time job at Turbine/WB Games.” But living up to her brand’s name, over the next 4 years, she discovered 14 other elemental words/phrases and Periodically Inspired became her full-time work.
Her inspiration for coming up with a new perfect word or clever phrase to include in her collection can occur anywhere, so ideas pop into her head all the time, hence the brand name Periodically Inspired.
Based on Courtney’s subject matter, it’s easy to assume that she has an education/background in the sciences or chemistry, specifically. But other than studying the elements in high school, and developing a more recent admiration for Dmitri Mendeleev, she doesn’t. “The extent to which I am so immersed in the Periodic Table today still surprises me. It’s simply an idea run wild!”
Courtney does, however, have a BA in Communications (General Marketing) with a Business Administration minor, and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. The compounding of her creativity and business acumen have proven to be the perfect formula for success.
In a WYSK exclusive, the Periodically Inspired founder gave us a sneak peek of what’s to come for her brand. She said, “I have a couple of surprises for Spring, but I’m really excited about our newest design that we’re printing right now. It will be available for order on my site and in my Etsy Shop next week, on November 1st.”
The story behind this new Breast Cancer Awareness themed design is as inspiring as its message. Courtney shared with WYSK, “I am working with my friend of 20 years, DeDee Peterson, who lives with her family and works as a nurse in Oregon. She herself is a breast cancer survivor after undergoing a double mastectomy and chemotherapy.” She added, “We’re going to be donating a percentage of sales to a foundation of DeDee’s choice. It will be a means to provide financial help to women who choose to undergo BRCA1 and BRCA2 testing.”
So far, they’ve gotten lots of great and amusing feedback on the new BOOBS design, namely from DeDee’s breast cancer surgeon who declared, “As both a dude and a breast cancer surgeon, I think it’s classy.”
This group of WYSKy GeNiUSEs and BRaInY CHICKS will sure toast to that!