1. Tell us exactly what FanMail is.
FanMail is a bi-monthly (every other month) mystery subscription box for lady geeks! We curate each box around an overarching theme, and choose fun fandom items for the box based on the theme. We also source at least one item per box from a woman-owned small business or woman artist!
2. Where did the idea come from for FanMail?
Rose: I had subscribed to a few pop culture mystery boxes, and none was really capturing the fandoms I loved. I realized that a lot of that was because many of the featured fandoms were more likely to have a lot of fans who were men. My fandoms weren’t being represented, and so I asked Jenny if she wanted to help me create a box that not only concentrated on fandoms we (and other lady geeks) love, but also helped support other women who are out there making amazing things!
Jenny: I thought this was such a cool idea! Fandom is such a unique space and it is full of super creative fan creators and artists. We wanted to capture all of that in a box!
3. How did you two meet?
Rose: We actually met our first year in college at Brandeis University! My roommate, Sara, was good friends with Jenny, so we ended up in the same friend group and hung out throughout college!
Jenny: We had some of the same favorite TV shows – we both loved Smallville, Charmed and Merlin!
4. Why do you think FanMail is an important service?
5. How long has FanMail been in existence?
6. How do you pick your themes?
7. What are some of your favorite past theme(s)/ item(s)?
Rose: I think that my favorites were February’s “Cracking the Case” (we got to include detective/crime-procedural fandoms like Sherlock, Hannibal, X-Files and Veronica Mars) and May’s “Magical Mystery” (Miyazaki, Penny Dreadful, Charmed – we did a P3 shirt!, and Pushing Daisies) – they just hit on a lot of my favorites, and have a good balance of classic and new fandoms!
February 2016 – Cracking the Case
As for fave items…the nail wraps that we’ve done with Espionage Cosmetics (an amazing lady-run company out of the Pacific Northwest!) are probably my favorites. We did Orphan Black-inspired ones (They’re called “Sestrahood of the Traveling Genes”) as well as Harry Potter Hermione-inspired ones for San Diego Comic-Con this year (“‘Mione’s Magical Mani”). I also have a soft spot for the coloring book we created for “Wars Among the Stars” and the Lumberjanes variant comic book cover we did with IDW.
Jenny: One of my favorite themes so far has been April’s “This Means War”. This box contained some fun and unique items that I really loved curating and creating!
We worked with an artist to create an adorable Captain America: Civil War t-shirt and also designed a “Let’s Do The Time War Again” coaster, which was a mash up of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Doctor Who. We also partnered up with publishers to showcase upcoming science fiction and fantasy novels written by women by including a chapter sampler, a bookmark, and even a lip balm in the box!
April 2016 – This Means War
I love the “Galentines & Valentines” greeting card set that Christie Hartman designed for us! They had some of my absolute favorite quotes on them, including “I’m with you ‘til the end of the line” from Captain America: Winter Soldier and “You poetic, noble land mermaid” from Parks & Recreation. I also really enjoyed the incredibly cute “Super Sheroes” magnetic bookmarks Kat and Derek from BeedooTO made for us, featuring Storm, Lady Thor and Spider-Gwen!
8. Can you give us any hints on any future themes?
We can tell you our October theme is “Things That Go Bump” and that we’ll be bringing you a month of spooky stories with the help of the International Geek Girl Pen Pal Club! We’re also announcing our first guest-curated box! Our friend, and amazing fangirl, author Sam Maggs (The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy) has helped us create a limited-edition box themed around her upcoming book “Wonder Women: 25 Innovators, Inventors, and Trailblazers Who Changed History”!
9. Anything else you’d like to add?
We’re always looking for fangirls and lady geeks to connect with, so follow us on social media or join our Facebook group! And if you’re in the Massachusetts area, Jenny will be at the first ever LadiesCon on September 17th! Come say hello and experience our “Build Your Own FanMail Box” station!
AND we’ll both be at Geek Girl Brunch NYC’s “Girls Night Out at NYCC” this year!