Faces in the crowd: WNC crowdfunding initiatives

ENTERPRISING ANIMALS: Although a feline, Dora is listed as a co-owner of Climb-It Cat, an eco-friendly company selling a new line of organic cotton cat perch covers. Photo from Climb-It Cat's campaign page

Crowdfunding platforms make it possible for individuals and organizations of any size to harness social networks and raise start-up capital for projects that might otherwise fail due to lack of funding. Each week, Xpress highlights notable Western North Carolina crowdsourcing initiatives that may inspire readers to become new faces in the crowd.

Climb-It Cat’s perch covers

Founded by Candler-based cat lover Kristi King, Climb-It Cat’s new product is “the easiest, most eco-friendly way to keep your cat perches clean and protected,” according to a company release. This reversible cat perch cover is made of washable organic cotton, elastic and padding and has the added benefit of protecting felines from chemicals that may be in perches’ carpet top. To reduce waste, King saves material scraps, later transforming them into toy cushions with a secret pocket for stashing catnip. Her work was recently featured in the Martha Stewart American Made 2015 competition. Now the entrepreneur aims to raise $10,000 by Sunday, Dec. 13, to place her first order with SewLink of Asheville, another woman-led company. Eventually, King hopes to give a portion of proceeds to animal shelters and foundations nationwide.

Buchanan Boys’ new album

Captured at Echo Mountain Recording and Western Carolina University’s Center for Applied Technology, the Buchanan Boys’ new album aims to foster connectivity through Appalachian rock. The band writes, “When you sit down on your front porch to relax after a long day, we want you to hear us singing about the simple life. When you recollect your past and see where you could’ve made better choices, but nevertheless learned from your mistakes, we want you to hear our harmonies recounting how we tested the water ourselves. When you think about lost love, we want you hear us sing about that last chance to feel the closeness. When you want to cut loose, we want to help you get out of control.” Although previous projects were completed under DIY conditions, the Southern group recently called upon producer Rogers Masson (Chris Daughtry, Marilyn Manson) for his creative and discerning ear. The Sylva-based band has already exceeded its $1,500 goal, funds from which will be used on distribution, publicity, merchandise and reimbursing expenses incurred during the album’s already-completed recording process. The campaign ends Sunday, Dec. 20.

Send your crowdsourcing campaign news to kmcreynolds@mountainx.com. A limited number of campaigns will be highlighted each week, at Xpress’ discretion. Campaigns must be locally based and should represent a current project with an achievable goal. Conditions are subject to change. Read about more Western North Carolina projects here.

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About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

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