We had the good fortune of connecting with Marshella Griffin and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Marshella, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
In 2017 I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Breast Cancer. I have always been an up beat person that loves Beauty, Fashion and making people laugh. I decided to tackle my cancer journey the way I lived my life daily, with Faith in God and finding joy in the middle of trials and tribulations. I lost my hair from chemotherapy and didn’t feel very attractive at first. I prayed and decided to change my attitude. I started researching to find stylish but comfortable clothes and beanies to wear. I started noticing that even throwing on my favorite shade of red lipstick boosted my moral! I knew others felt like I did so I decided to create something to help them too. Chemoswagg was created during a long 5 hour chemo session. I’ve been Cancer free for the last 2 years and I feel blessed to have gone through Cancer. Because of that journey, I was able to see a need and help others going through hard times as well. Our tag line is “Look good, even when you don’t feel good”. Chemoswagg is more then a business, it’s my Mission.
What should our readers know about your business?
Chemoswagg is a way of life more than it is a business. It’s all about embracing and owning the fact that you have Cancer or other ailments and you can still be Sexy, Chic, Stylish and Confident. Cancer does not define you or change who you are even though you may feel out of sorts. With our products, we encourage ultra comfort with style! We have only been around for a year but I am hopeful that the Chemoswagg mentality will continue to catch on and spread. We offer uplifting messages on much of our products and other products are runway ready with the comfort of your favorite PJ’s. It has not been easy starting a business from the ground up, but it’s been so rewarding because I am able to design products and also see the smile on my customers faces when they send me a picture of them wearing something that I created. We are not a brand that is about making money. I see it more as my ministry. God allowed me to go through my journey so that he could use me to be a light to others who are dealing with the same things. Even with all the hard work, I feel fulfilled and blessed to be a blessing to others.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love being anywhere there are a diverse group of people. When my friends or family visit, a fun week would be a trip to the beach Ofcourse, maybe Santa Monica Pier. We have to do a good Champagne brunch either downtown at Perch or in Burbank at The Castaway. The Broad museum, L.A. Live and Disney music hall are also great places to take visitors from out of town. We must also go check out live music events/concerts either outdoors or small intimate venues like The Roxy or The Troubadour. You also can’t go wrong with a movie at the Hollywood Cemetary. There are too many things to do. We would need more than a week.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are so many people that have been instrumental in shaping me into the human I am. My loving parents, Donald and Marlene Griffin instilled the foundation of Faith in my life and have always supported and encouraged any endeavor I have ever pursued. My siblings, Don Jr. and Mariesha Garner, along with their spouses have always loved me unconditionally and supported me as well. I have a family that truly loves, supports and prays for one another and it’s beautiful. My other rock who has pushed me to pursue all my dreams is my husband, Lance Larry. He makes me want to do more for others and be an all around better human. He was with me through the hard times and made me feel beautiful when I felt and looked my worst. I’m a better person because of him. My relationship with God and my tribe is what keeps me fighting to live another day full of joy, laughter and gratefulness. I pray that I am making a difference in people’s lives and making my family proud.