Every now and then, someone comes into your life and you're instantly inspired by their kindness and generosity, their positive spirit and beautiful soul. It's magnetic and you immediately want to be around this person. Emily Kate Warren was this person for me.
We met while I was working on P&G Beauty and always in need of a makeup artist or hair stylist for events. Emily or EKW as we called her, had a reputation for wrangling the best of the best in beauty. She, herself, was a talented makeup artist, but it was her ability to connect the beauty PR world with other amazing women that made her special.
This ability to be a connector and a positive force to uplift women has manifested over the years and I'm excited to share more about her start-up, boxcar+muse.
This video below really says it all, but keep reading to find out how you can help boxcar+muse win a $100K grant to shape their future and vision - "a culture where flexing our creative muscles, innovating, and engaging in self-discovery is as accepted, vital, and popular a practice as going to a gym."
CMJ: So tell us about boxcar+muse. How did it all start?
EKW: boxcar+muse was a pipe dream I've been musing over since about 2007. I wanted to start an artist co-op that would include seven or so amazing hair and makeup artists who I am still close with. I wanted to have an agency without an agent.
CMJ: That sounds amazing!
EKW: It does, but the more I thought about it and built it out in my head, the more I was building more of a community, and my group was all women. When I moved to San Francisco suddenly, I was very depressed about leaving my solid career, friends and clients back in NYC. I found it hard to make new friends at my age even though I'm very outgoing. I didn't have kids, a dog or any classes that I was taking or even a regular 9 to 5 where I would have the opportunity to make new connections. I started fantasizing about my idea again and realized it was more about the cooperative vibe being therapeutic than wanting to actually do any agency tasks. I found the support of my group of artists in NYC to be fulfilling, therapeutic and inspiring. So, I started to hash out a plan. I started thinking about how that would translate into everyday life, not just being about a specific career.
CMJ: I'm literally at this place in my life right now. Tell me more!
EKW: Well, when I moved from SF to LA, I had a baby and my life turned upside down again --in the best most wonderful way! I realized that my career wasn't everything -- and couldn't be or I wouldn't be a good mom, friend, spouse, daughter. I started to host regular women's dinner parties, gatherings, events and happenings. I started mapping out my plans; started bouncing ideas off friends. And then I got wind of a grant opportunity last year by la2050.org and went into overdrive. I spoke to a startup attorney friend who got me on track with an old plan and here we go!
During that time I also reconnected with my now business partner Ariel Nazryan who, all the while, had a very similar idea to build a creative gym and self-discovery center inspired by visiting a loved one in an upscale rehab.
CMJ: In one sentence, how would you describe boxcar+muse?
EKW: boxcar+muse is an indulgent and imaginative play and work space, a connector of diverse women, and a platform for fun and meaningful experiences.
CMJ: If you win the grant, what could this mean for boxcar+muse?
EKW: Our permanent space will have a library, a meditation and inspiration room, a community kitchen and garden...actual tools that you can use to work on any project you wish (kiln! letterpress! tortilla press! roller skates?!) because we want to inspire your next idea! We want to support you in any way you need! Along with our one-of-a-kind creative journeys, we will have weekly volunteering efforts and activism clubs. We will have dedicated and shared working space for women. We will collaborate with many local organizations to nurture plans for a better and brighter future for all women.
CMJ: Can you just open in Pittsburgh already?
EKW: YES! That is our hope. We plan to expand in at least six cities in the future but for now, we begin in LA.
CMJ: So, how do we VOTE?
EKW: Click here: http://bit.ly/2e06GNi
Scroll down to the GREEN VOTE NOW button and BAM! It will take you less than seven seconds if you log in using Facebook or another social platform. Help us win $100K for boxcar+muse and watch women take the world by storm!
CMJ: Done and Done!