The 411 on 313

A few weeks ago our family went to church and Heather decided to leave Lucy in the nursery for the first time. Each child is assigned a number when they check in, so that if the nursery worker needs to notify a parent that their child needs attention, they can display that number on a small screen at the front of the church. Lucy’s randomly computer generated number was… (drum-roll please…. ) 313. Cool eh?

Wait… it gets better…

A couple of days ago I got my pants back from the dry cleaners, and this was the tag that was attached to them. No joke.


I thought the tag would make for some good blog fodder, and reminded me that I’ve been meaning to write a post about the name “31Three” for a long time.

When I was starting the business 5+ years ago, my wife and I were wrestling with what to name it. After a couple days of thumbing through dictionaries and thesauruses looking for the perfect name, Heather stumbled on an obscure text in the book of Exodus (31:3) that talks about God placing his Spirit on a guy named Bezalel to be creative, and to make stuff.

Not only have I filled him with my Spirit, but I have given him wisdom and made him a skilled craftsman who can create objects of art with gold, silver, bronze, stone, and wood.

These words really resonated with me. Stepping out into business on my own was a real step of faith, and by naming my business after these words, it was kind of my way of tipping my hat to the Creator. Every time I have to explain to someone what the name means, it reminds me of my beginnings, and where I believe creativity comes from… and there’s something about thoughts like those that help me stay grounded.

I’ll admit that I’ve been a bit hesitant to share the story behind the name in fear that it might come across sounding like I’m saying “I’m God’s gift to web design” or something stupid like that… so please don’t read into it that way. I just wanted to share the meaning because I get quite a few emails asking, so I figured others out there might want to know as well.

In all practicality… it’s not a very good name. Trying to tell someone my email address over the phone is next to impossible, and it doesn’t really mean much to others besides myself. I’ve debated on changing it to just “Jesse Bennett-Chamberlain” a few times, but it seems that every time I do, something like the above dry cleaners tag will cross my path and change my mind.