What’s your why? Quoin
“People don’t ‘buy’ what you do, they ‘buy’ why you do it.” – Simon Sinek
So, what is this Quoin thing? How do you pronounce it? What made you start this? When do you have time for this? How long have you been working on it? And lastly, why?
These are just a few of the many questions I’ve been answering over the past few months preparing for the launch of Quoin. And with each question, I’ve been eager to share this newfound “side hustle” of mine. It’s an honor to share it with you, too. Let’s jump right in!
We’ll back up to 2016, when my husband and I were making the move from Florida “back to the South” (because we all know that Florida is not the true South). We looked at Nashville and Atlanta and landed on the latter due to potential opportunities - particularly in retail. I got a job at Spanx and was so excited about joining a progressive company culture that has a strong tie to philanthropy. The Spanx by Sara Blakely Foundation has donated millions to charities around the world, focusing on organizations that empower under served women and girls. In 2013, Sara Blakely became the first self-made, female billionaire to sign the Giving Pledge, promising to give at least half her wealth to charity. I was ready to be part of a team whose mission was something bigger!
There are so many awesome things happening in the city of Atlanta, but we also have some pretty terrible stats, too. Atlanta ranks among the top cities for the highest rate of human trafficking, and just last year, Atlanta ranked the worst in income inequality in the entire United States! Knowing both of these facts, I knew I had to do more to help change those statistics. I first learned about human trafficking in college, and since then I have wanted to find ways to get involved in the fight against it.
Enter: Beloved Atlanta. They’re a nonprofit organization and the only two-year residential home and program for adult women surviving prostitution, trafficking, and addiction here in Atlanta. I love the small and close-knit factor that Beloved has and their mission to help restore their lives. Their program lasts for two full years before assisting women in finding affordable housing to be on their own again. Meeting some of the women in their program gave a whole new meaning to all the percentages and numbers I had read about. In front of me were living and breathing souls who had each faced a terrible set of circumstances. This could easily have been me, a friend or family member. Why her? And what could I do to make an impact to better her life?
Quoin came to life over a year later from one of my first volunteer experiences. I found Mattie Tiegreen through social media and knew if I was going to make this concept in my head come to life, she was my girl to help me make it happen. And, man, was I right about that decision. Her branding and aesthetic were a perfect match for me using minimal and thoughtful design while focusing on a genuine connection. I loved everything about working with her! And I won’t try to hide, she even came up with the name (credit where credit is due!). Mattie introduced me to Starr Miller who has also helped me create our beautiful coin necklaces! Starr is a badass jewelry designer who has a love to learn and is such a great teacher of her craft. Her goal for her business is for “empowered people to wear her fine jewelry that speaks to their identity as modern, empowered, modern, sexy and refined.” I would not be where I am without the talent and support of these two!
I realize the whole “it takes a village” thing is totally true, and couldn’t even begin to list all the help I received from friends & family members. These are the people in your life that challenge you to be the better version of yourself. I think of the women I’ve had to opportunity to meet and know they’re growing stronger every day because of the support of their Beloved community. Quoin is on a mission to pay it forward and embed ourselves into this community in all that we do and walk alongside these ladies to show them change is possible and now is time to see that change, for good.
(Otherwise known as the e-roge-jones, EJ, ERN, and now – the proud Founder of Quoin)