Philadelphia—The “Gypsy Traveler” is one of the key trends we’ve identified for fall, but it also goes a long way in describing Heather and Katie O’Neill, the sister team behind Mushmina, their social mission fashion company.
This week, the 2014 FedEx Small Business Grant Contest awarded them first place and earned them the chance to take their fashion mission on the road.
The Road from Morocco
To accomplish this goal, the sisters have chosen the perfect vehicle (pun intended) to spread their message and connect with new customers. They are transforming a 1974 VW Westfalia camper bus into a mobile Moroccan Caravan to serve as a traveling boutique and interactive communications site for their handmade products.
The 2014 FedEx Small Business Grant money will allow Heather and Katie to complete the restoration of the van and get it on the road by this summer
The sisters envision that the addition of the Mobile Caravan will increase their retail sales and exposure. A healthy bottom line will help educate the next generation of artisans through the Flying Camel Training Center in Morocco where both young and older students learn traditional crafts as well as literacy and technology.
“We’re thankful that FedEx recognizes the potential of the Mushmina business model and as an international company with a boutique, an online store, and a wholesale line. We rely on FedEx to reach our customers globally,” says co-founder Katie O’Neill. The more customers Mushmina reaches, the more artisans they can empower and guide to economic freedom.
“That’s a win-win for everyone involved,” adds co-founder Heather O’Neill.