Thursday, May 22nd 2014
At Everything Summer, we love stories that inspire. Imagine our excitement when we saw not one, but two stories in the New York Times recently about savvy, hard-working teens who decided what they wanted and went for it.
As a high school junior, Megan Grassell was shopping for a first bra for her 13-year old sister, and she didn’t like what she saw. The choices for young girls and teenagers were “dominated by push-up styles with padding and underwire… ‘There shouldn’t be so much of a hurry to grow up so fast,’ she said.”
Ms. Grassell had come across a gap in the market, and rather than settle for less, she founded her own company, Yellowberry. Yellowberry designs simple, colorful, age-appropriate bras for young girls.
With no experience in sewing or prototype design, Grassell plunged ahead, researching fabrics and designs and using savings earned from summer jobs (yes!) to order materials and even hire a local seamstress. She was proactive; sought advice from local business leaders and received feedback on prototypes by creating informal focus groups among her younger sister’s friends.
Her hard work has been paying off. Her first batch of orders sold out within two months, and her recent crowdfunding campaign brought in almost $42,000. Click here to read her story!
Adam Faze, a junior at Loyola High School in Los Angeles, is making moves as well. Passionate about the film-making industry, Faze was disappointed in the lack of opportunities available at school. “I want to go to film school and work in the industry, but Loyola has nothing like that, which is weird because we’re right here in L.A….so instead of sitting around and sulking, I decided to do something.”
Faze decided to organize a film festival. And despite an unenthusiastic response from the school, he remained steadfast and worked hard to make it happen. He made cold calls and sent letters, even networked with previous school alumni and donors. The tipping point was when he landed a festival speaker: Producer Michael De Luca, of “The Social Network” fame.
The Loyola Film Festival took place on May 17th and featured 72 student films in four categories. Faze secured sponsors and donors such as Sony Creative Software, the Los Angeles County Museum, and Sag-AFTRA. Click here to read his story!
So our message: challenge yourself, and don’t be afraid to take chances. It’s a great way to learn and grow. And you can start this summer!