Tuesday June 27, 2017

Go For Your Dreams

Written by David Marler
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doona coversDoona Covers From Duckprint By Joey Thomas

Doona Covers From New Australian Designer, Joey Thomas

EVER had a unique idea for a business but were too scared to try it?  I think many of us do.  Sometimes it just takes a leap of faith and a push from those around you to get things rolling.  Young entrepreneur Joey Thomas knows this too well.  During her school days she noticed a gaping hole in the bedding designs available on the market.

“I was fed up of visiting the bed linen stores and not being able to find anything that I liked.  Being the arty person I was I told Dad that I would design my own.   Dad came right back with, well maybe you should”.

It wasn’t until she finished her university marketing and psychology degree that she started to explore her idea more seriously. However, within a few months she’d put the idea aside, taken up the conservative route and begun working for a wage.

"Initially I wanted to go into advertising but the more I learnt about the industry the more I realised it wasn't for me. I started exploring my business idea while I was still at university. I landed myself a job soon after with an online furniture company. This gave me the confidence I needed to take the leap and give my idea a real crack."

A chance encounter with a family friend put her back on track.  He offered the email of a Chinese local named Connie who he thought might be of assistance.  From there things began to take shape.

As you do these days, the two girls got to know one another over Skype.  After researching several suppliers online they met at a hotel lobby in Shenzhen, China.  From there they traipsed around the factories trying to find a supplier who was happy to work with two crazy young girls.

"We barely knew what thread count meant.  It was a big learning curve for us both.”

The next year involved some serious research on production techniques and fabric quality, some samples that were not only appalling quality but delivered several months late, the closing of the factory they were doing business with, several doubts on whether things would ever work out, and a meeting with the general manager of one of the largest textile companies in China. 

Finally they had something tangible to show for their efforts.

“I look back on the journey that we’ve been through and it’s been truly amazing.  I flew into China with no idea about the country, language or people.  All I had was an idea and the passion to explore it.   I was lucky to find someone like Connie who was crazy enough to go along with it all."

Joey's company has a great name; Duckprint. Where did that come from?

"I wanted something that could be depicted clearly by a logo. Footprint had already been done so we thought Duckprint would be a fun alternative.  We looked up the domain name and it was still available so we had a winner."

Joey's top three hot tips to others starting out on their own dream:

1. "Find someone that your accountable to, whether that be a parent, friend, relative or business mentor. It's important that you have someone to bounce ideas off and can help encourage you to keep going when your passion starts to wane.  It can sometimes be lonely going out on your own and it's really important that you have someone that shares you passion so that they can help you achieve your goals."

. "Start small. Don't overwhelm yourself with possibilities. Keep things simple in the beginning and make that work before you start getting carried away."

3. "Track your hours spent on different tasks. Even though I'm not paying myself for my time spent on the business I've found that recording my hours makes me more productive while also keeping me motivated.  Sometimes it can feel like its taking forever to achieve the success in your business. Keeping a record of what you've done reminds you of the things you HAVE accomplished."

Joey’s journey continues to unfold and you can follow her progress by visiting her blog at www.duckprint.com.au, it's also on display below. Follow Joey on twitter at @clairejoey and at facebook www.facebook.com/duckprint.

Her bold, colourful range of doona cover designs are available to purchase online so if you’re room needs some extra spark make sure you check it out.


Joey Thomas - Doona Covers

Designing Her Own - Joey Thomas

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