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Meet Jacqueline Martinez of Inner Artist in San Fernando Valley

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jacqueline Martinez.

Jacqueline, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
My mother was diagnosed with cancer in 2016. During that time, I was looking for ways to vent, to relieve all the stress that the situation was bringing. I signed up to a local gym and in no time, I started forming healthier habits. I want to evolve into a better version on myself, seeing the beauty in all the madness. That is what sparked the idea of INNER ARTIST. I wanted to create a brand that helped women evolve, that allowed them to speak their truth. I soon realized that one way to actively pursue that is through fitness so INNER ARTIST evolved into that.

In 2017 I started looking for manufacturers. Without prevail, I instead started going alone to free seminars and workshops that seemed to guide me in that direction. Anything that helped me look for the resources such as how to get a sellers permit or how to launch a website. These things helped me get started when I had no money, no time, and no specific direction. During my time of searching, I came across a professional in November 2017, he took me to different local LA manufacturers. I didn’t work with any of them but he helped me set the foundation like register with the city, get your license, etc.

I soon came across a professional designer in 2017 who has helped me built a custom clothing line for women of different shapes, sizes, and styles of training. Since then till now, I keep looking for international manufacturers and businesses we can work with. It is a nonstop game trying to be better.

INNER ARTIST is registered in Mexico as well. We will soon have a warehouse and distribution center located internationally to ship those orders.

It took me a whole year to find the resources, start production, create a website, and launch. A year! This process is long, it requires patience. It has required for me to evolve into the next best version of myself. As of now, we have a range of resistance bands, water bottles, slides, etc. Our first clothing line collection is done, we are in production and ready to set up for our launch date.

However, I would like to point out that INNER ARTIST started with $350. You don’t need a lot to start. You just need a strong work ethic, and patience, lots of patience.

Has it been a smooth road?
It has been FAR from a smooth road. Where do I start? From figuring out the financial resources to producing samples for the clothing line to clearing out my personal environment.

One of the main struggles is finding a home team that supports you without calling you crazy. It’s been a hard journey evolving because you lose people along the way. People you care about that you call family and friends show that they don’t believe in you and thats hard. Knowing you’re in it alone.

Another struggle along the way has been hearing a lot of no’s in different directions. From trying to get manufacturer contacts to applying for a bank loan. In the very beginning, nobody wants to be apart your vision. That’s ok. Many want you to prove yourself before working with them. So you go out and work. You go out and do the things they said you couldn’t do.

A big challenge I try my hardest to be open about is financially. You don’t need a whole lot to start. However in the beginning you will sacrifice a whole lot of night outs with friends, no buying morning coffee everyday, wearing the same clothes, all to save your pennies and dimes. My background is in the legal field, and one thing that almost knocked me down was getting laid off January 2019. At that time, my income was funding INNER ARTIST. Once losing my job, I worried I wouldn’t have enough to keep running it or go into production with future projects. However, that started a fire in me. Once I saw I could lose INNER ARTIST, I hit the ground running. I looked for ways to expand, increase sales, get the community involved. I went through many long cold lonely nights in 2019. I’m just happy the present moment is blossoming all the seeds I planted when I had the entire world against me.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
INNER ARTIST is a women fitness gear & apparel line. We specialize in creating gear that is for the modern women on the go. From gear that is used to work out anywhere to our clothes supporting any style of training. At the moment, we are most known for our heavy cotton resistance bands. It helps busy women train at home or break a sweat on vacation with short amount of time.

As of now, what I am most proud of as a company is engaging in events and fundraisers that help battle cancer or support a healthy lifestyle. INNER ARTIST was born because my mother was diagnosed with cancer so when I had the chance to make it into a company, I knew I would never say no to an opportunity that would help support those in need. I’m proud of the ways we’ve done that already.

I think what has made us stand out is the fact that we don’t encourage a certain beauty standard. We do not only say but show through our products that it doesn’t matter what size and shape you are, or what your background is, you have the potential to evolve into the best you. You can create a life you are proud of. Your beauty starts with being you.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
I definitely think my city is where it’s at. San Fernando Valley is all about culture and community. If you look for those resources that you need to start, you will find it. No doubt. I have received an immense amount of support from my community here and local business owners. I can’t thank them enough! We are twenty minutes away from top manufacturers in DTLA. Top diverse talent is surrounding us. Of course, you can start right here. Right now. Today!

Contact Info:

  • Website: www.innerartistapparel.com
  • Email: support@innerartistapparel.com
  • Instagram: @_innerartist_
  • Facebook: @innerartistapparel

Image Credit:
Personal Photo: Mark Jaime; 1st photo: Denise Nicole, 2nd & 3rd: Beck Graben, 4th: Manuel Reyes, 5th-9th: Alex Cobian

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