I do not know about you, but I have a Love/Jealous relationship with all these adorable and successful little Pop up shops all over Instagram and other social medias. These inspiring stay at home or working moms are adding to the chaos of their already busy lives and starting creative and beautiful home businesses. I follow a few pop up shops on my social media sites and I swoon over their beautiful products. Everything from Headbands for my daughter, to pants and bow ties for my son, and even t-shirts and scrunchies for myself. They are adorable. They are also pricey for this thrifty bargain shopping mom.
I find myself either trying to justify the purchase because it is a home business and I would be one mom supporting another. Another argument I could make to convince myself that buying these cute accessories and clothing items is that I am buying local. I am investing in my community. The materials and products are organic and hand made in my own city. They are more expensive because more love, money and time has been spent on making them and getting them to my family.
I am also torn because it is my dream to be able to stay at home and take care of my children and family while doing something I love. I love crafting. My issue is I start 20 projects at once and I am not sure which of them I enjoy the most. I am also the type of person who sees something that some one has made and finds a way to make it myself. Especially if the cost of their item is more then the cost of the materials and within my sowing/creative ability. I am not too lazy or too cheap to just make it myself. Probably why I enjoy doing so many projects at one time.
Seeing these shops thrive and succeed only drives me to want to do my own. But what product do I have that people might even considering buying over all the others out there? What creative, original, hand made, yet professional looking, creation can I come up with? Do I have the time? Would people even want what I have to offer? These are all questions and concerns that roll around in my brain as I come up with my business model. I do not have to be the best at what I do. But I do want to offer the best that I can make.
So thank you Pop up shops. Thank you for providing local, hand made, products for us to either buy or be inspired by. I am all for supporting the “little guy”. I am also in love with the idea of supporting other Moms who are trudging through the same toddler trenches that I am, but doing it with more success. I am proud of you working moms who take on projects and live out your dreams. Its hard to do. Its intimidating.
So what is the purpose of this post. To be honest, I had no idea when I started writing is. I just had a bunch of ideas floating around my head all having to do with this topic and I thought i would use this blog as an outlet for it. Pop up shops are a inspiring and in some ways easy. You do not need a store front, you do not need to fork out a lot of money all in the beginning, you do not need to pay for advertising, You do not even really need a business plan. Now that all being said, I have never started a business selling products and I am not a “How To” master on this area. I am not even a “How To” beginner. I am an observer. I am on the sidelines hoping to make my break into a world that inspires me.
So maybe the purpose of this post is to tell you about the product I have been working on. Sure. Lets do that. Let me be a little vulnerable and throw my little Pop up Shop idea out there.
Magnetic Story boards
(This is an example of my “Down by the Bay” story board)
I am sure you all remember Felt Board stories. The ones that your teacher or Sunday school teacher would use to tell a nursery rhyme or bible story. The ones that if you were sitting really nicely and listening you might just get a chance to put on the flannel board. The ones that were too delicate for you play with. The ones that would get stretched and even torn if you were not gentle with them. Well I have combined my love of drawing with the need for sturdier story pieces. (totally sounds like an infomercial.)
Right now I am working on my inventory so people can order them at a low cost. The design I have used is a hand drawn character laminated with a piece of magnetic strip attached to the back. The advantage of this design is that after a teacher/parent has used them to tell a story they can then have peace of mind letting a child use the pieces, knowing that they are durable. Plus I am including a life time warranty for any pieces that get wrecked. Not lost. Wrecked.
I can do custom orders for a child’s favorite book, or song, or bible story. Here are a few of the stories I already have made.
- The three bears
- Paper bag Princess
- 3 little pigs and the big bad wolf
- There was an Old women who swallowed a fly
- Old Mac Donald
- The Three billy goats gruff
- 5 Little monkeys Jumping on the bed
- 5 Little monkeys swinging in a tree
- Down by the bay
- The Peaceable Kingdom
- 5 Red Apples
- 5 Little cookies
- Mushroom in the Rain
- Some matching games (match animal with their food)
- Some color games
- Some sorting games
- Dress the Weather Boy
- Dress up Weather Girl
- Stephanie’s Pony tail
- The Gift of the Inuksuk
- Adam and Eve
Those are just a few of the stories I have finished.
My main selling point for these is that they let children learn and use their imagination. They can retell the story they were just told or they can come up with their own story. It is a fun way for children to feel in charge and in control. My 2 year old son absolutely loves retelling me the story of the 3 little pigs. He does a really good job too. He keeps the attention of my 15 month old as he tells it.
I am totally in the beginning stages of starting up the business. I love doing it but I am having a hard time being motivated to work on the stories. So, I thought I would let all who read our blog know about it and see if there is any interest out there. I have been told they would make great gifts for children 6 and under. For birthdays or Christmas. You could include the story board with a book. or you could buy a cute little magnetic board and a few story boards along with it.
So this has turned into a “Let me know what you think” Blog entry.
I appreciate all support and encouragement for this topic. When I have “Paypal” all set up I will add the pictures of each completed story.
Thank you for reading all the way until the end of this rambling Blog entry. You are the best!