Mojo of Signature Custom Wraps Talks Barbie Pink Teslas and More

Mojo of Signature Custom Wraps Talks Barbie Pink Teslas and More

EVANNEX has been around since the early days of Tesla, along with a few friends who have watched the automaker become what it is today. One such friend includes Michael "Mojo" Mogilewski who runs Signature Custom Wraps in Dania Beach, Florida. Recently, we hopped on the phone with Mojo to talk about he and his girlfriend's Barbie pink Teslas, the community as a whole, and how far the automaker has come in the last decade or so.

Above: Mojo and Erol's Barbie pink Teslas (Image: Used with express permission from Michael Mogilewski and Signature Custom Wraps).

Beyond being Barbie pink, Mojo's Model S and his girlfriend Erol Brenes's Model Y also include miniature Teslas on top, making them some of the most unique Tesla builds out there. What's more is that the two wrapped their Teslas in the bright pink color well before the Barbie movie came out. Still, however, enthusiastic onlookers are absolutely loving the vehicles, and their resemblance to the film's overwhelmingly pink aesthetic.

You can read our full interview with Michael "Mojo" Mogilewski of Signature Custom Wraps below, along with more pictures of his and girlfriend Erol Brenes's pink Teslas.

Above: Erol's Barbie pink Tesla Model Y and Mojo's Barbie pink Tesla Model S (Image: Used with express permission from Michael Mogilewski and Signature Custom Wraps).

EVANNEX: Can you tell me about how Signature Custom Wraps got its start along with how Erol and the Florida Tesla Club are involved?

Mojo: Yeah, it's kind of funny. I used to work for a national magazine, and I worked for my best friend Brad Bargmann. He had a magazine (me and him had one together), and he pulled up one day in a wrapped Mercedes-Benz and I was like, ‘What the hell is that?’ He's like, ‘It's a wrap.’ I'm like, ‘what is a wrap?’ And he explained it to me.

And I was kind of… not burned out with the magazine — graphic design work and all that — but I wanted something different. So I looked into it, and I put my two-week notice in, started working for another company, and was promised the world and didn't receive it. But I learned a lot. I learned the ins and outs of how to take care of your clients and all that stuff. And I kind of let myself go and I started Signature Customs with a good friend of mine at the time, Tate.

We just started doing jobs and then my best friend Brad, again, got a Tesla, and I worked on it. And Vossen, which is a wheel company down here, put wheels on it. We wrapped it, put wheels on it, and it was on the Colbert Report on Comedy Central.

I worked on his car in 2014, and we took a car to SEMA. At that time there was only two Teslas there, and one was from Unplugged Performance with Ben. He had one and I had one in the Arlon booth for vinyl wraps.

And then once we did Brad's car, it kind of just blew up. It was kind of weird. I was literally the only person in South Florida who would touch a Tesla, because it was electric. But I had a friend that had one, and I was working with Byron in the Dania Beach Service Center, which was the only service center in South Florida at the time, and he taught me everything I needed to know about working on a Tesla. And it just kind of snowballed after that.

It was a weird thing. It was just you know, it just happened to happen. And Brad was always like, don't put all your eggs in one basket. But look: I'm here now 12 years later. [Laughs] Still working on Teslas, I mean I work on a lot of other cars, but that's just like my bread and butter.

And meeting Erol was almost 11 years, probably 10 years ago, with Larry. Larry started the South Florida Tesla club, and Erol was big into doing all the events and everything. We were invited to the first grand opening of the first Supercharger in Port St. Lucie, and that's where we all kind of like finally met. There was a Facebook page that was built.

At the time, EVANNEX and the family, the Pressmans, they were right down the road from my shop, so we all got together and we're trying new things and testing new things. That was literally the whole start of the Tesla era, and aftermarket stuff, and connecting people with the Facebook page with Larry and Erol and events.

And we all have just been like a tight family. I mean the Tesla community — we were the original people. And it's interesting to watch EVANNEX grow, the club grow, I'm growing.

[We were] going to SEMA a couple of times, still in 2014, and taking the Tesla that was completely decked out. It was wrapped, wheel suspension, audio. We did a starlight roof in it and literally the only other Tesla that was there was Ben from Unplugged and it was pretty cool. And then [we started getting] clients from all over the place: Kentucky, New York, Texas.

Again, nobody was no one was touching these things. Everybody was scared. It was electric. ‘What's it going to do? How do you charge it? Where do you charge it?’

And my ace in my pocket was Byron and having a Tesla service center literally like miles from my shop. So, anytime I broke a part, because we all broke parts, you know, [they were there.] And watching these cars evolve was the fun part. The club grew, EVANNEX grew. Times had changed and then the Model 3 came out, and then I went from a 1,200-square-foot shop to a 5,000-, to a 6,500-square-foot shop.

Above: Mojo and Erol's Barbie pink Teslas (Image: Used with express permission from Michael Mogilewski and Signature Custom Wraps).

Again, there were maybe a couple of people who were teasing with Teslas, but I was getting them from Tesla, with the protection stuff on them, detailing, tinting them, chrome-deleting them, and then taking them back to the dealership to be delivered. It's cool to see how these things have evolved.

My first one was a Model S P85+, rear-wheel drive, and I did it all up. Because back in the day, you met people at the Supercharger. That was like a big meetup and people talked. It was still a family thing, but it's not like that anymore. And no one was doing anything, so I just went from Supercharger to Supercharger.

I mean, there was Port St. Lucie and Plantation was the second one down here in Florida. That's where I used to park my car every night after work and go eat dinner. And that's where I started meeting [people with Teslas], and literally, my P85+ was my biggest marketing billboard thing that I could have done for any advertising. The Facebook pages were cool, but at the time you weren't able to advertise your business. They didn't want any soliciting. So I had I literally just did up my car and just drove around.

EVANNEX: Speaking of doing up your car and driving around talking to people, can you tell me a little bit about these pink Barbie-looking Teslas and what people have been saying about them?

Mojo: So my Teslas have always been called “Obnoxious." My first one was “Obnoxious Tesla,” my second one was my “Obnoxious 2.0,” and then this one is “Obnoxious 3.0.” Those are all my Model S [vehicles], and I have a Model X and a Model Y, too.

So being in the wrap business, it sucks, because you obviously can see the new colors, and you always want to change. Being an owner of a shop, you’ve always got to be five steps ahead of everybody else. You're trying to do the new thing. You're trying to show off the things that people never thought they could do to their car.

I bought my first Plaid two years ago. Unfortunately, I totaled it, and then I got this one, and I just wanted something something stupid loud. And I did pink chrome a year ago, not even anything to do with the Barbie thing. It was just a loud color.

I'm an elite dealer for ceramic pro and ceramic pro color. There's our black, white and pink. So I was like ‘Perfect, it goes with my company and goes with ceramic pro,’ like this is the perfect marketing color and vehicle for it. And then it was just crazy, you know? Then I did Tesla Con with EVANNEX and Erol and the club.

And me and Erol have been in the passing for 10 years. We just did the event, the Tesla Con, and me and Erol went out one night, and we've been together since. It's been like 10 years in the making, it's kind of weird. We've always been doing events, she's been able to see my kids and then I supported her, she supported me. Her and Larry have always been great family.

And it was just cool to be finally able to sit down with her and and talk and get to know her more than just the club. I always was under the assumption she worked for Tesla. She was the youngest female in Florida to have a Tesla. She bought that, she was going to school, she was hustling, a single mom. When you meet certain people and you understand where they came from and what they're doing and what they did… that was really just a big motivator to get to know her more, and it's been, so far, a great 10 months.

Above: Tesla Model X STEALTH Paint Protection Film XPEL | Signature Custom Wraps (Video: Signature Custom Wraps via YouTube).

She had a 2012 Model S 60, and she just turned it in eight months ago for a Model Y. It had like 100,000 miles on it, and I got her into the Model Y and she's waiting on her Cybertruck just like all of us. I couldn't have her as my girlfriend and not have a wrapped car. So, of course you know I show her the book, I said ‘pick a color,’ and of course she picks the most expensive wrap there is [Laughs].

And it just kind of fell in place, not even knowing anything about the Barbie show. That was the funny thing about it. And then we started building her car, and then we did an event in Orlando. It was a pink car event. All pink vehicles car event in Orlando. And I had these little cars sitting around and everyone's like, ‘You guys should just wrap them the same color as your car and throw them on top of the car.’ And my best friend made some rails and everything.

I told her about it, and she's like, ‘I'm not doing that. I'm not doing that on my car.’ I said ‘Okay, well then I'm going to because we're gonna roll into a car show, all pink car show, with pink cars on top.’ And I took pictures of my car and she's like ‘Okay, I want one. Now I want one.’

So it's been going since, and then the Barbie movie came out, and everyone thinks that we did it for the Barbie movie, but this was already planned ahead of time. We did a preview of the Barbie movie, we did an event. It’s kind of funny because now we're trying to do stuff with the Barbie movie thing.

But it's interesting, this car gets more attention now, her car too, because she lives up in West Palm and I'm down in Fort Lauderdale. So people think there are kind of the same cars all over the place. But there's there's two of them now. My best friend has a pink Model S too, a kid that works with me has a pink-wrapped car also. I just did another really big client, her Model X, and I did it in my custom-designed pink stuff.

So I think pink is the color, and it's not because of the Barbie movie either.

EVANNEX: Any other notable jobs you’ve enjoyed working on over the years?

Mojo: I've never been about showing off or being part of like the big wrap community — you know, I say this as I drive a bright pink Tesla. But I really take pride in it, and when someone comes into my shop, they become family. I would say probably 80 percent of my clients I talk to or I do stuff with or we run into each other, I keep in touch with them, with their kids, whatever, their jobs, anything like that. I always invite them out to do stuff. They become family.

I haven't done really big stuff. My big thing is when you open up that door and they see their car, that means more than anything else because they took their idea, I built it for them, and they're just like mind blown. I really didn't care about the money or becoming filthy rich. I enjoy the reaction of people, when they get to see their car finally and they get to drive that around and they're proud of it, and every morning they look at their car and they're like, ‘That's my one-off car, no one else has it done like that.’ And I get to create that. They get to see my work every single day. So that's really my big thing.

I'm teaching my kids to work with me also. My daughter is 16 and my son's 13, and they know how to wrap, they know how to coat, they know how to polish, they know how to PPF. My daughter's doing the books and the front-end work with the marketing now. Obviously, she's in school, but when she's not. It's always been a family thing. I've been a single dad pretty much the whole entire time, unless I was with somebody, but yeah.

Doing this on my own with them and their support, that's bigger than anything else. We've done a lot of big shows, Electrified, you know the Electrified shows that are around the country. We've done some cars that have been to SEMA. One year we took four cars. There's other cars that we've taken that we just didn't go with, that were in SEMA.

Above: Mojo and Erol's Barbie pink Teslas (Image: Used with express permission from Michael Mogilewski and Signature Custom Wraps).

Those are kind of the cool things, but I'm not like, I've never been that guy that would be like flaunting my sh*t, you know? But then everyone's like ‘You drive a big chrome car,’ but that's like my business. I mean I'm very low-key: we go out, we have a good time, nothing crazy crazy. I was just always brought up to be as humble as possible, and be grateful for what you’ve got and what you can do.

And I love people, I love interacting with people, and that was a cool thing with Erol and Larry in the clubs, and the Pressmans, like that was the whole family thing of building this whole Tesla community up. It's just everyone is family.

EVANNEX: What would you say makes the Tesla community different from the rest of the automotive community?

Mojo: Now or then? [Laughs] Because I think now the Tesla community is very watered down. I think now people are recognizing Tesla, the car and the amazing features of it. I think in the last, I'd say two, three years, it's now [become] a household name. Everybody wants it. And I think those people are just normal car people. They just want that car.

In the beginning, it was all about the technology, supporting a new company, understanding the future with sustainable stuff. A lot of them are techies, a lot of them are geeky. Sorry, Tesla people. But you know, money people, they're on technology, they were always about what's next, looking into the future and seeing things.

Above: Mojo and Erol's Barbie pink Teslas (Image: Used with express permission from Michael Mogilewski and Signature Custom Wraps).

And back in the day, like the first five, six, seven years, man, you met some really intelligent people. Engineers. I mean, a lot of these guys in the beginning were engineers that bought into their first Tesla and prayed that it would work after the Roadster. And I think that was the cool thing with meeting Larry, who started the club, and Erol, was you would sit down at lunch after an event.

I would just sit there because my dad always said, ‘Keep your mouth shut and keep your ears open,’ just sit there and let people talk. And you’re just like man, you're sitting with a table of 12 very intelligent people knowing what they're doing with stocks and money and technology. Like how many people put up money for this car, after they just saw renderings, after he already took a dive with the Roadster? So again, taking chances but they knew what they were getting themselves into.

So I think that definitely changed because back in the day, they were a tight niche. They all talked they got along they did events, stuff like that. But now you know the younger kids are getting into it. The families are getting into it, and now it's just a car for them, where it was a community and a family for us back then. It's like when you move into a neighborhood and there’s only like 10 houses, and then five years later, there's complexes all over and you don't know anybody.

So there's definitely a change in the market, and you can see the difference in Florida to California. California’s got a crazy, crazy Tesla following with custom builds and all that stuff, where Florida is still the older crew. They don't do car shows. They're wealthy, like really wealthy CEOs, all these high-end people that literally just enjoy their car. They're not there to show it off.

Yeah, but there's definitely been a change. I mean used to go to chargers and hang out and talk, and now chargers are just full and packed and no one talks to anyone. No one gets out of their car and says ‘Hey, how you doing? Where are you from?’ So, weird change. But it was it was gonna happen.

EVANNEX: I mean, that sounds interesting to have watched if nothing else.

Mojo: Yeah, absolutely right. And the cool thing is, you know Larry, and Daryl and all those guys and me and EVANNEX, we were always seeing the cars, we were always about the cars, because I see 10-20 cars a week. So I see the growing of the cars, the changing of the cars, the changing of the clients. I see the people from 2012, 2013, 2014, getting into a newer car, handing it down to their kids now.

That's the cool thing, like the families are growing up with the cars and are handing the cars down. But you get to see the little kids. Even the little kids like younger than teenagers getting excited that their parents got a Tesla, and those kids know more about the Tesla than the parents do. That's the best part of this. Because I interact with so many people all day long. It's funny to watch a kid come in, that's like 10 years old, and they’re literally showing up their parents. That's the best feeling in the world because that's where my kids were and where they are now you know?

Above: Mojo and Erol's Barbie pink Teslas (Image: Used with express permission from Michael Mogilewski and Signature Custom Wraps).

You know you asked me about doing big builds — I find that more satisfying than showing off these big builds that you do two, three of them a year. That constant growth is literally what makes me get up every morning and do this with no problems still after 12 years.

EVANNEX: Is there anything else that you want to talk about or any questions you think I missed?

Mojo: Everything's just family, you know? It's cool. It's like a triangle with Larry and Erol doing the Facebook page that's recognized by Tesla, and having the club down here, and having EVANNEX and the Pressmans like, starting all the little things, what you could do with what the car didn't have, and they created it. I thought that was like the cool thing, and then we have me that just modifies the sh*t out of them. You know, ‘Hey, let's drop it. Let's change the interior and change the wheels. Let's change the color. Let's do this. Let's do that.’

It's funny how all three just literally meshed together so well over the years. And seeing the growth and all that, that goes with the companies, and seeing the people that work with Tesla. I still work with Byron and Ryan and Justin, and these guys are original people, eight, nine years into the company, which is very rare. Because usually they're not. Tesla doesn't like to keep around their employees long.

So when you get to see and talk to and still be best friends with guys that have been around now long with the company, I think that's another really cool thing. And you watch them grow and go up in the ranks in the company and stuff.


You can check out the Signature Custom Wraps website here, or check them out on Facebook here.