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Lolo Coffeeshop Expansion!

Lolo (formerly Lolo and Friends) is moving and adding a coffeeshop! Help us build a place for the community to shop, drink, chat, and hang!

$2,735
pledged of$25,000 goal
27
51Days Left
Fund it
Campaign Ends on October 1, 2020

Project Description

Thank you so much for visiting my funding campaign! My previous retail location is now closed and I am opening a new space just a few blocks away! In this new space I will be adding a coffeeshop, as well as some vintage and sustainable clothing. I am planning to open September 2020 (pending COVID-19) and am raising funds to help with this endeavor! This is where I’ve always imagined taking Lolo, but it was a matter of time and… well… money ;)

 

About Lolo

HelloOoo there everyone! My name is Lauren Williams and I opened Lolo in March 2019. Lolo is a small but impactful (like me!) retail shop located on the border of Carroll Gardens and Gowanus, Brooklyn that sells thoughtfully designed home goods, accessories, jewelry, body products and various gifts by emerging artists and designers. I aim to choose products that are one of a kind and that you probably wouldn't be able to find many other places (especially not on Amazon). Nearly all of these products are designed by female identifying makers and/or majority women-owned businesses. I started this shop for many reasons, but an important, driving reason (one that I bring myself back to every time I doubt myself) was to support and give a platform to the blossoming creative community around me. This is a community, as a RISD alum and as a career fashion designer, that I’ve been a part of for most of my life. 

The decline of brick and mortar has been one of the things making it harder for creatives to make a living off of their passions, or in most cases, to pursue their passions at all. My goal has been that this store would become both a creative outlet for me and a creative outlet for my community to sell their work in a physical place. I’ve been so pleasantly surprised this past year at how many people have traveled outside of their neighborhood, state, or country (!!!) to shop at the store in real life, despite having the option of purchasing online. Photos don’t do justice to half the pieces in the shop - they deserve to be seen IRL. I truly believe that their value is felt a trillion times more when seen in person and when displayed amongst other talented work.

 

 

So why move to a larger space and add a coffeeshop to the store?

 

1.) LONGEVITY! My perseverance isn’t enough to win over the fact that retail is in a decline. A coffee shop will help keep traffic flowing through the space - which leads to more eyes on the products in the store - which will inevitably lead to more purchases. When someone comes in for a coffee, they may end up leaving with a gift for someone, and vice versa. Plus, wouldn’t you love to browse a store with a cup of coffee or tea just an arm’s length away? Stay all day, why don’t ya! The more products that are purchased in the shop means more products that I can purchase from designers to restock the shop -- it's a really lovely cycle for all parties involved! 

  • I will be partnering with City of Saints Coffee Roasters who roast just a few miles away in Bushwick, Brooklyn. They pride themselves in partnerships and celebrating the communities they inhabit. I’ve been feeling this sentiment TREMENDOUSLY from them. They have been incredibly helpful in determining what type of equipment I should buy, how to hook it up, and where to put it. I’m honored to serve their coffee and can’t wait for you all to try it!
  • Something that’s missing from this particular nook of Carroll Gardens/Gowanus is specialty and wellness latte options! I plan to focus a lot on this niche so that I may set Lolo apart from the neighboring coffee shops. Look out for some yummy turmeric, lavender, or rose lattes and be prepared to add some collagen or adaptogens to it ;)
  • I’ll also be serving the lovely Masha herbal teas! Masha Tea was founded in Brooklyn by naturopath Dr. Maria Geyman ND and is assembled by hand in small batches. The tea brings the healing and regenerative powers of natural teas to discerning drinkers and is designed with flavor, sustainability and beauty in mind. 
  • Pastries are still TBD, but there WILL BE PASTRIES! Yummy treats to provide some sustenance should you decide to park yourself at one of our tables for awhile.

 

2.) COMMUNITY! With all this extra space, I will be focusing more on community engagement. There will be a bi-weekly events calendar in place where we'll be hosting fun and informative things like floral workshops, comedy nights, entrepreneurial panels, anything! I want Lolo to be a space where everyone in the neighborhood feels at home, welcome, and joyous. A pleasant place where you can sit and not talk to anyone, or where you can go and possibly make a new friend. No judgements and no expectations other than kindness. Events have also proven to be fairly profitable the last few times Lolo has hosted them (which definitely doesn't hurt!).

 

3.) EMPLOYMENT! For any type of person that is trying to pursue their passion, it sometimes means that they need a part-time, flexible work option to provide extra income. I would love to be another source of income for people that allows them the time and freedom to work on what matters most to them when they are not at Lolo. While they are working at Lolo, they will be surrounded by the work of artists, possibly their peers, which I hope would be inspiring and a lot less mundane than working elsewhere. Extra points if they also have work for sale in the shop! 

 

 


And where exactly will this money be going????

 

My first location was funded solely on personal savings and an extremely generous loan from my parents. I had the privilege to work a full-time fashion design job (remotely) while simultaneously working at and managing the store. I am funding this next space with savings from this past years’ sales, with some small business loans, and by taking advantage of credit card promos. Your contributions will help me pay off these loans and credit card balances faster and will provide additional cash on hand - which will allow the business to run more smoothly from day one.

 

Here’s specifically where I’ll be focusing these funds:

 

1.) EQUIPMENT! Did you know that those fancy Italian espresso machines you see in all your favorite coffee shops cost at least $10,000? Well, now you do! And that’s an enormous chunk of my budget, but arguably the most important! In addition to the espresso machine, I also need things like coffee grinders (another high ticket item), coffee brewers, a refrigerator, sinks, ice machine and a commercial dishwasher. Are you sweating? I’m sweating.


2.) BUILDOUT! The owners of this new space are dealing with much of the cosmetic work, such as a gorgeous exterior GLOW-UP. The old bodega storefront is getting removed and they are installing a custom wood exterior that they developed with NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission. It will look very similar to how it did back in 1920. The owners are also installing the flooring, a bathroom, and a HVAC system. However, I do need to pay for the 1000sqft of flooring upgrade (hardwood) and the specific plumbing that needs to be put in place for all those aforementioned fancy appliances. I’ll be building the coffee bar and benches myself! SOS!


3.) JUMP START ON PAYROLL! A coffeeshop is a whole new animal and I cannot do it as independently as I did with just the retail shop. I want to be positive that I have enough cash on hand on day one to pay employees before sales start rolling through. I will make sure of this no matter what, but it would give me peace of mind having extra cushion here.  

 

 

I have procrastinated this campaign    for   so   long    because I truly hate asking for help. I cannot thank you enough for even clicking this link and considering contributing any amount to help me fund this new endeavor. Extra kudos if you’ve made it through this whole essay, written by someone who hasn’t written more than a paragraph on a single topic since 12th grade! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Supporting local businesses is so important to the health and prosperity of a neighborhood. Your support means literally everything to me! Regardless of whether you contribute or not, please come by and chat this Fall when we open, and maybe grab a cup of coffee ;)

xo
Lauren

If you have any questions, please drop me a line any time at friends@lolo.nyc
 

Updates

The Campaign FAQs

Please email me with any and all questions and I promise to respond within 24 hours :)  friends@lolo.nyc

 

Kate
08/09/2020
Monetary Contribution
$25
06/25/2020
Two Custom Handmade Porcelain Mugs
$200
Annie Collopy
05/17/2020
The Whole Lolo Goodie Bag
$50
Amber Kraus
04/17/2020
The Whole Lolo Goodie Bag
$50
Kara Weinstein
03/17/2020
Lolo Reusable Tote & Enamel Pin
$25
BelioCrochet
03/09/2020
Custom Handmade Ceramic Bud Vase
$100
Freida hirsch
03/05/2020
Custom Handmade Ceramic Bud Vase
$100
03/02/2020
Custom Handmade Ceramic Bud Vase
$100
Travis
03/01/2020
Lolo Reusable Tote & Enamel Pin
$25
Amy Palmer
03/01/2020
Host Your Own Event at Lolo!
$1,000
Monetary Contribution

- Donate any amount... just because!

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

 

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!

3 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
Lolo Reusable Tote & Enamel Pin

- A tote! An enamel pin! Just a little reminder of your favorite shop

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

6 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
The Whole Lolo Goodie Bag

- Our best selling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag and an enamel pin

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

9 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
Custom Handmade Ceramic Bud Vase

- Tell me about the bud vase of your dreams (approx 4" tall) and I'll try to create it!

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

6 Supporters
Select this reward
200.00 USD
Two Custom Handmade Porcelain Mugs

- So you've never found that perfect mug, huh? Tell me about it and I'll make you TWO!

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

2 Supporters
Select this reward
500.00 USD
Large Custom Handmade Porcelain Vase

- Describe a vase that's missing from your life (approx 9" tall) and I'll try my best to put it in your life!

- You'll also get the whole Lolo goodie bag: our best selling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag, and an enamel pin

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

0 Supporters
Select this reward
1,000.00 USD
Host Your Own Event at Lolo!

- Need a place to host your birthday? Or a "just because" event? Mi Lolo es su Lolo

- You'll also get a large custom handmade ceramic vase (approx 9" tall). Give me an idea and I'll make it!

- Plus the whole Lolo goodie bag:  our best selling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag, and an enamel pin

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

1 Supporter
Select this reward
5,000.00 USD
OH MY GOODNESS

Well my gawd, you are an absolute dream. Aside from my everlasting gratitude, you'll get the below:

- The whole Lolo goodie bag: our bestselling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag, and an enamel pin

- 2 custom handmade porcelain mugs. Tell me what you want and I'll try to create it!

- A large custom handmade porcelain vase (approx 9" tall). Tell me about the vase of your dreams and I'll do it upppp.

- A custom handmade bud vase (approx 4" tall). Same deal - give me an idea of what you want and I'll make it!

- Host an event at Lolo, maximum 40 people.

- Your name on the donor list with like 5 million gold stars around it

- A video of me FREEEEEAKING OUT

- Free hot drip coffee for life

 

0 Supporters
Select this reward

About the Entrepreneur

Rewards

Monetary Contribution

- Donate any amount... just because!

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

 

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!

3 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
Lolo Reusable Tote & Enamel Pin

- A tote! An enamel pin! Just a little reminder of your favorite shop

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

6 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
The Whole Lolo Goodie Bag

- Our best selling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag and an enamel pin

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

9 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
Custom Handmade Ceramic Bud Vase

- Tell me about the bud vase of your dreams (approx 4" tall) and I'll try to create it!

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

6 Supporters
Select this reward
200.00 USD
Two Custom Handmade Porcelain Mugs

- So you've never found that perfect mug, huh? Tell me about it and I'll make you TWO!

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

2 Supporters
Select this reward
500.00 USD
Large Custom Handmade Porcelain Vase

- Describe a vase that's missing from your life (approx 9" tall) and I'll try my best to put it in your life!

- You'll also get the whole Lolo goodie bag: our best selling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag, and an enamel pin

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

0 Supporters
Select this reward
1,000.00 USD
Host Your Own Event at Lolo!

- Need a place to host your birthday? Or a "just because" event? Mi Lolo es su Lolo

- You'll also get a large custom handmade ceramic vase (approx 9" tall). Give me an idea and I'll make it!

- Plus the whole Lolo goodie bag:  our best selling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag, and an enamel pin

- Unless you'd rather remain anonymous, you'll get a social media shoutout and your name on the donor list displayed in the shop! 

1 Supporter
Select this reward
5,000.00 USD
OH MY GOODNESS

Well my gawd, you are an absolute dream. Aside from my everlasting gratitude, you'll get the below:

- The whole Lolo goodie bag: our bestselling "keep it on the LOLO" hat, a reusable tote bag, and an enamel pin

- 2 custom handmade porcelain mugs. Tell me what you want and I'll try to create it!

- A large custom handmade porcelain vase (approx 9" tall). Tell me about the vase of your dreams and I'll do it upppp.

- A custom handmade bud vase (approx 4" tall). Same deal - give me an idea of what you want and I'll make it!

- Host an event at Lolo, maximum 40 people.

- Your name on the donor list with like 5 million gold stars around it

- A video of me FREEEEEAKING OUT

- Free hot drip coffee for life

 

0 Supporters
Select this reward