We started Project Cape Made in 2016 in order to provide micro grants to local makers who make Cape Cod so special and unique; to help them grow or enhance their businesses by gifting them $500 to pay for things like marketing materials, legal fees or materials or infrastructure they might need to make their products. Thanks to the Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod we have been able to double the support we are able to give to local makers, so instead of giving two grants a year, we are able to give four. We invite the public to nominate a local business for the award, telling us what they will use the money for and how it will help them advance their business goals. Our most recent grant cycle winners are Stephanie Pina of Fussy Goose Studios and Amy Kelly of Moon Compass Studio.
Stephanie grew up in a military family that landed in Falmouth when she was five years old. After spending some time off Cape for college and post-college life she moved to Dennis Port in 2016. Shortly after moving back to the Cape she went to one of Love Live Local’s festivals and it sparked an inspiration to “find purpose and create things she loved.” Stephanie had always loved candles and decided to create a line of her own called Fussy Goose (named after her dog Goose), and now she says she “continues to love pouring candles and how it keeps me anchored and present in the moment.”
The Fussy Goose line is made with 100% soy wax derived from American grown soy beans. The candles are preservative and petroleum free and 100% vegan. Stephanie chooses her scents based on things you find in nature or moments in time. “I want my scents to spark nostalgia and bring people back to their treasured memories,” she says and “the way I style my products is simply based off of my love for all things retro and mid century modern!” She prides herself on her attention to detail, and designs all of her own packaging adding her artistic flair whenever possible and plans to use the Project Cape Made funds on new labels for her soon-to-be launched Everyday Collection. And she says the candle names “give me a chance to show off my silly side, and I enjoy when people finally get my ‘dad joke’ and start laughing” (our favorite is Citrus Got Real).
A sentiment Stephanie shares with a lot of the other local makers is that she is amazed by the continuous support she gets from other local makers and business owners – “I truly feel a sense of belonging here and look forward to what the future brings!”
A native of Texas, Amy was brought to Cape Cod in 2016 by her husband who grew up in Sandwich. After receiving a painting degree from Mass Art, she brought together her creativity and love for sculpture and the foundry process (and for anything that sparkles) together to found her own jewelry line Moon Compass Studio in 2017.
Amy has always wanted to
create art since she was young. “I’ve always had a wish to show people how I see the
world. Since I was a little kid, I’ve
always been this way. I want people to
stop and appreciate the small things, find beauty in everyday objects or in
things that you’re used to seeing.” To that end, her jewelry line is about
finding the beauty in the ordinary or overlooked. She finds inspiration in the
natural world of Cape Cod, and tries to capture the stories of sea life in precious metals. Amy believes “it serves as a direct
connection to the awe-inspiring experience of being oceanside,” and goes on to
say, “I want my work to remind people of the importance of conserving what we
Because of her passion for conserving and her dedication to sustainability Amy buys all of her metals from a company in Japan that reclaims metals from industrial processes, so it’s 100% re-used. And anything she doesn’t maker herself she makes sure it is recycled and responsibly sourced. She looks forward to exploring partnerships with local environmental and wildlife organizations, and plans to donate a percentage of her profits to them in the future.
Like Stephanie, Amy has found the community of local makers to be supportive rather than competitive, and loves that Cape Codders really care about conscious shopping, supporting the local economy and the arts.
She plans on using the Project Cape Made funds to purchase a dust collection unit, so she can continue to create in a healthy way for a long time to come!