I wanted to write about being an entrepreneur of a boutique toy manufacturing company and tell you a little about my experience to date.
I started The Fiammetta Toy Company Inc. and Stork Babies in November 2012 and have been in business about 20 months. What I realized then and now realize even more, is that I knew nothing - really I knew nothing about starting a company!! I started a toy manufacturing company from just an idea. I truly believe if you see or envision something it will come true. I had the idea to make small dolls based on the passion I had when I was 6-7 years old, when I first discovered matchbox dolls. I tried it and it worked. Our beautiful little Stork Babies are in now in over 250 stores across North America and are competing against multi-million dollar companies.
One thing I did not realize is how hard it was going to be. I tell you... this is the funnest time in my life, but the biggest stress and struggle. To even be noticed as a small blip on the map of toy manufacturers has been difficult. I have had to learn how to market products, discover what SEO even is :), learn about packaging and prototype production and overall design.
The best part of this job is having my kids involved. They choose all of the designs and colors of the dolls. They also choose the names and sayings all the dolls come with. I hope one day, the world will be ready to accept Chinese, Indian and all colored dolls. What I have discovered is that the world is quite not ready to accept a huge range of multicultural dolls which is a shame. All of our skin colors and cultures are so beautiful. Toy reps even say - do we have to buy the brown ones??? It is really a sad state this world is still in.
One of the biggest struggles I have had is financial capital. We have built this company from the ground up - with no loans. To keep growing without millions of dollars of capital makes it a challenge and always interesting. Overall, I have to say this is the FUNNEST job I have ever had and everyday I feel guilty for going to "work". People say..isn't starting your own company difficult? Yes - but it is so much fun. Its just a bunch of easy steps you need ot put together...ok maybe 10,000 easy steps you need to put together. Just put all those little steps together and there you have a company!
My dream is to grow this company nice and slowly. So far, we have done well. We are now competing against Calico Critters in specialty stores....
Our newest collection is the "Around The World Collection", which I cannot wait to share with the world this coming January 2015.
Thanks and take care!