A New West-based company specializing in products inspired by Indigenous culture and traditions is the big winner in this year’s Level-Up My Brand contest.
After receiving dozens of entries for this year’s contest, judges narrowed the selection down to 10 semi-finalists. The grand-prize winner and two runners up were announced during a Zoom meeting on June 29, with Sisters Sage coming out on top.
“It’s Indigenous People’s History month, and so winning for an Indigenous business is even more spectacular for us. A win for Sisters Sage is really a win for Indigenous business, so thank you,” said Melissa-Rae Angus of Sisters Sage. “Peace, love and smudge. And always remember to ‘sage against the machine’.”
Sisters Lynn-Marie and Melissa-Rae Angus, who co-founded Sisters Sage in September 2018, use traditional Indigenous ingredients like cedar, sage, sweetgrass, lavender and tobacco to create self-care and wellness products such as soaps, bath bombs and smudge sprays. The sisters’ heritage is Gitxaala, Nisga’a and Metis Nations.
A number of New West businesses worked together to host and sponsor the Level-Up My Brand contesst, with thousands of dollars in business support up for grabs. This included: a promotional product (swag) package from PattersonBrands ($2,500); print/digital advertising from the New West Record ($2,500); purpose discovery, design philosophy and brand voice from WestCoastBrand Management ($2,000); video production from CrowMotel ($2,000); New Westminster Chamber of Commerce membership for any size organization, with unlimited event access for one ($2,000); storybrand script consultation by JG Branding and Marketing Consulting ($2,000); a branding audit from WebbCreative ($1,000); website service from Kamikaze Consulting ($1,000); print and packaging services from Glenmore Printing ($750); an office party catering package from Amaranthus restaurant and Steel & Oak Brewing Company ($700); a vehicle wrap/vinyl signage from Canawrap ($500); an accounting consult with Seymour Gardner Accounting ($500); and lunch with Mayor Jonathan Cote.
The other semi-finalists in this year’s contest were: New West Hospice Society, New West Farmers Market, Barley’s Homebrewing Supplies, Sew Good, Florezca Designs, Laughter Zone 101, MOVE Studio, Mila + Paige clothing boutique and IMPACT Parkinson’s. MOVE Studio placed second and Mila + Page took third place.
“Congratulations Sister Sage. You earned it. You definitely deserved it,” said Stefania Butkovic, a judge in this year’s contest and the winner of the 2018 contest. “If we could have given first prizes to everyone, I’m sure we would have. Everyone did so amazing.”
Rich Patterson, one of the contest’s co-founders, agreed.
“It was very, very hard to judge. Everybody was great,” he said of the 10 semi-finalists and the 40-something other applicants. “It was a great event.”