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Total loan: $4,000
Vicki & Athina
Astoria, NY, United States / Clothing
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Vicki & Athina's loan finished fundraising,
but these similar borrowers just need a little more help to reach their goals!
A loan helped provides working capital to our woman-owned business to overcome the challenges posed by COVID-19.
Vicki & Athina's story
Co-founder Vicki is a lifelong New Yorker, but she was born in Greece. Her Dad was a craftsman – and she’s always been fascinated with artisans and handmade things because she believes that they possess the soul of the creator. She majored in Journalism at NYU, but she had always loved fashion and design. During one summer, she studied fashion merchandising in Paris, a truly formative experience: she fondly remembers admiring the world-class artisans at the Hermes atelier doing their intricate work. A spark ignited in her, and it built to a burning desire to tell the stories of creative individuals who make the world a more beautiful place! Vicki spent 12 years as a fashion editor covering the designer collections in the U.S. and in Europe. A feature article she wrote about Italian artisans inspired her to produce and direct her acclaimed documentary, MEN OF THE CLOTH, a heartfelt portrait of three Italian master tailors with a lifelong passion and devotion for their disappearing craft. Vicki aspired to use both her extensive fashion experience and storytelling skills to launch a socially conscious business where she could reconnect with her Greek roots. Co-founder Athina was born and raised in Athens, Greece, where she studied advertising and marketing at University. Her 15-year professional career in the banking and marketing sector gave her valuable experience, but something was always missing. Possessing a curious mind, and feeling deeply drawn to the arts, she took University courses in Art History, earning a diploma in photography as a way to express her artistic inspiration. Athina’s life changed dramatically in her mid 30’s. She took her experience in strategic planning, marketing and advertising, and directed her career to an entirely different path. For the last 16 years, as a passionate filmmaker and entrepreneur, she has traveled all over Greece and abroad, discovering mostly unknown places and hidden gems of Greek culture. Athina met talented young designers, many of whom left the urban environment and returned to their hometowns. Driven by their Greek passion and creativity, these designers opened small production houses for clothing, jewelry, bags, and accessories -- all handmade and inspired by Greek culture, history and nature! Vicki knew that there were limited offerings of artisan-quality Greek designs in the U.S. And after she and Athina connected through a mutual friend in New York, they saw an opportunity to appeal to discerning American customers who seek exceptional handcrafted clothing and accessories created ethically and sustainably.