by Wendy Carter
I have been making fun unique hooded towels for kids for 12 years and now we are developing matching slippers for our best sellers.
About this project
I currently own Yikes Twins, a sucessful children’s hooded towel company that I started 12 years ago. We sell to over 400 stores in the US, and a few in Canada, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Dubai. I sell to high end boutiques, and department stores including Barneys NY, and Bloomingdales.
I wanted to create something that would go along with our hooded towels, to compliment the style, and also be just as fun for kids and useful for parents. I came up the the idea for a slipper, since every Christmas, my kids ask for slippers as a gift. We all love the idea of curling up in the winter with some cute jammies, and a fun soft pair of slippers. The reason I want to do a Kickstarter campaign is to see if everyone else is just as crazy about the adorable designs I’ve come up with, and if your family would want to have these as gifts for Christmas like my family does. I am already in the process of making an order for my hooded towels for the holiday delivery time, so to add these designs of slippers on to the order would be easy. I have already received samples of most of the designs, and we have done some tweaking on them (ie. adding a backstrap to the size 2-4 slipper, so they stay on the little one’s feet).
I currently house my inventory in our home (2 car garage and basement are taken over with boxes of towels!) and my family helps me out when needed for shipping, and unloading my overseas orders from a 20ft. container. I love to show my kids how much work it is, but how rewarding it also is to own and operate your own business. I can’t thank my friends enough for showing up to the “Truck unloading party” that we have 2-3 times a year when stock arrives. It’s a great workout and bonding time! I couldn’t do any of this without their support.
Risks and challenges
There are always risks and challenges that come with developing new items for my line. I have been designing hooded towels for 12 years, but I’m new to the slipper business! The manufacturer that I work with for my towel production has been outstanding on customer service, communication, and product development. I expect the highest quality from them, and they have produced it for me. We have only been late on delivery once, because the towels were randomly selected (delivery arrived in port near 9/11 date) and were stuck in a customs check, which cost additional money to get them once they held them and searched them for 3 weeks! That was stressful, but I learned that as long as I kept the communication with my stores open, and updated them on the progress that I got from US Customs, they were very understanding and patient. I have also dealt with any damaged or problems with any of our towels purchased very swiftly, and with understanding. No one wants to be blamed for a product that is not up to par in quality, and I make sure my customers know I stand behind my products and will do whatever I can to keep them satisfied. You can see my current product reviews and customer service comments here.
If I do meet my goal, and need to add additional slippers to the order, I am prepared to do that and have them delivered still on time at the end of September 2015.