Meet the Inaugural Class of Factory45: Part I

tina-thumbnailTINA HOFER MEDICO | THE SPARK BOARD

Atlanta, GA

Tina and I were connected through a mutual friend (hey, Amber Rae!) and she was the first person to sign on to Factory45 before I had even launched. Tina is an interior designer who wants to create products for artists, designers and entrepreneurs that ignite a creative spark. We’ll be working together to source sustainable materials for her first product, The Spark Board, as well as building a Kickstarter campaign for her to go to market.

 

jesse-thumbnailJESSE SYSWERDA | EENVOUD

Brooklyn, NY

Jesse will be our resident fashion expert, having studied at Parsons The New School for Design. Jesse and I realized we date back to my {r}evolution apparel days, having had a few email exchanges in 2012, as well as a mutual friend. Jesse is passionate about aesthetics, sustainability and inspiring others. She also works as a “fit model” in NYC, so she will be a great resource during the samplemaking and prototyping stage of Factory45. We will be working together to source sustainable fabrics while moving her brand forward into production.

 

angela-thumbnailANGELA TSAI | TOO COOL FOR DROOL

Nationwide

Angela is a mother of two who travels the country with her husband as a performer in the Lion King tour. Knowing firsthand the challenges of having children, Angela has designed an innovative piece of apparel that helps women transition into motherhood while still feeling confident and fashionable. Through Factory45, Angela will build her brand and online presence while creating a company that supports women in their new roles as mothers.

 

mikaela-thumbnailMIKAELA CLIFFORD | RUTH & RAGNAR

Encinitas, CA

Mikaela was introduced to Factory45 by Johanna Bjork, editor of Goodlifer and a mutual connection. Mikaela almost fell through the cracks when her application didn’t submit due to a technical glitch. Luckily, she followed up with me on the last day of F45 interviews and I was able to Skype with her in Singapore. Mikaela is creating sustainable childrenswear, with organic and recycled materials, inspired by Swedish design. We’ll be working together to explore sourcing options, grow Ruth & Ragnar’s brand identity, and create a go-to-market strategy.

 

emily-rose-thumbnailEMILY ROSE GUTMAN | INTERWOVEN MOSAIC PRODUCTIONS

New York, NY

Emily is a bond trader on Wall Street who ultimately wants to work for herself and create products with a greater social good. Her goal is to create cause-driven, limited-run apparel with a full lifecycle from beginning to end. Emily will spend the next six months “as a test to really see if businesses can be beautiful while also creating/changing consciousness.”

 

You’ll be introduced to the second half of the group next week!

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Call out: I’m looking for additional writers for the Factory45 blog. If you’re a designer, maker or entrepreneur who can write about your experiences, lessons and business advice, I’d love to talk to you about becoming a featured columnist. Please email my communications manager at audrey@shannonwhitehead.com with the subject line “Featured columnist” and include your bio, a link to your website/social media pages and a short writing sample.