We all love a deal. You know what I’m talking about. When you walk into a store, and you see something on sale, and you’re like “It’s only $4.50! Yes! What a deal!” Or if you’re in a thrift shop and you find a designer handbag, or a pair of designer shoes for like, $3.00, you think you won the lottery. We get a thrill out of a deal. It’s that hit of adrenaline. It’s exciting. But for others, maybe the idea of second-hand shopping is overwhelming and taxing. Maybe you just like the idea of it, but actually doing it? Not so much. My guest today took her passion for finding a deal, and made it into a sustainable business. Liz Funk is the co-founder of And We Evolve, a subscription box styling service for shopping high-quality, second-hand clothing.
ANSWERING A NEED WITH EXISTING RESOURCES: A FLASHBULB IDEA
Liz loves a phrase that her co-founder coined: “The world does not need another dress.” She was inspired by the book “Overdressed” and recognized that every woman has clothes in her closet that she doesn’t wear, but at the same time, also would like to freshen-up her wardrobe. It was then that she became what she calls a “want-trepreneur”–she found herself waiting to feel ready and waiting to have the idea for her business crystalized. Liz moved to Philadelphia from New York City and took a visual design class where she shared her idea. In this class, Liz met her co-founder and business partner, Alisha. She finally felt she had the support system she needed to launch their venture–And We Evolve.
THE SUBSCRIPTION BOX MODEL
Liz and Alisha recognized that there were plenty of second-hand clothing websites, and there were subscription boxes, but there were no existing second-hand clothing subscription boxes. They decided to close the gap. Liz asked her network to share their gently-used clothing and was overwhelmed by the response. Today, And We Evolve still operates on the donation model. This allows women to have an alternate option to dropping their clothes off at Goodwill–ultimately a pit stop on their clothing’s journey to a landfill. Liz and Alisha work to salvage and repair pieces that are in need of some love, and reuse them to their full potential.
A DREAM JOB, AN ARTFORM
If Liz had to choose one word to describe her job, it would be “FUN!” If she had to decide what to do with a free Saturday, this would be it. Her job allows her to help women to approach their wardrobe as a design challenge–not anonymous things bought, but a collection that is curated. She believes that there should be a relationship with every item in your wardrobe. As And We Evolve grows, the company strives to pour as much intimate attention into each box as they have since the very beginning, ensuring that those relationships happen.
About Liz Funk, Co-Founder of And We Evolve:
Liz Funk is the co-founder of And We Evolve, a style club and subscription box service for secondhand clothing in like-new condition. She lives in Philadelphia, PA– a city that is great for growing companies, with its low rents for big warehouse lofts and tight-knit startup scene. Before launching And We Evolve, she wrote about entrepreneurship, business, and women’s issues for publications like Fast Company, the Washington Post, USA Today, Newsday, and the Economist.
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