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Pumpkin and Beau

Pumpkin and Beau is a surface pattern design company specializing in “bold, colorful, organic happiness”. Shapes are odd; yet make a statement just like the complentory color choices. The direction I want to start out in this journey is through licensing my designs. Target, Pier One, and other mid to high-end retailers and iconic boutiques with an amazing eye for design are just a few places where I envision my product to be. There are places here locally where I imagine my work being showcased and sold. Ultimately I would love the opportunity to manufacture my own product, however, I don’t have the capital for that right now.

 My big goal for 2016 is to exhibit at Surtex in New York. This is a huge goal that takes focus, as everything that needs to be done must be planned out well in advance. The plan that will get me there, roughly five and half months from now is as follows. I plan to have 10 strong collections, each having 5-7 different swatches with 7 computer mockups for each collection done by May. That allows 2 solid weeks for the completion of two collections. 10 strong collections are the goal; I am sure more will be generated but for now 10 serious, well thought out, eye catching designs that work well together and tell a story. Within each of the two weeks I will be sharpening my Illustrator and Photoshop skills. I also will be completing mockups so that I won’t be pressed and stressed toward the end trying to design visual aides, and look books.

This first month is foundational. During this time I will be on line scouring businesses offerings for small business help/resources such as investment opportunities. This part of the journey I have actually started on. I have a few dates circled on my calendar to ensure I get the necessary paperwork in on time. Deadlines are approaching faster than I would like but if I can win a contest where a company is willing to invest in me, then its worth the stress. Again, this first initial month is really about laying some foundational groundwork. By writing the dates and deadlines on my calendar holds myself accountable and is key in getting started and maintaining my momentum.

Other foundational work includes designing a logo, honing on my unique selling proposition, as well as coming up with unique graphic elements that help me tell the story representative of Pumpkin and Beau. Although my marketing collateral isn’t the main focus for this initial month, I always keep pen and paper around for when inspiration hits. The generation of ideas for other marketing collateral like postcards, ribbons, buttons, stickers, and business cards will only help solidify my brand to potential manufacturers and retailers. Once I have all of these elements in place, then I will be able to launch the website.

I currently work as a graphic designer, so on my hour-long lunch breaks I sketch ideas and concepts that I think are interesting and best fit my style. Half the fun for me is doing the research, so I look to fashion, home décor and travel magazines for inspiration. Also during down time at work, I will be researching suppliers and pricing to get a strong grasp on how and what amount it will take to get some product pieces made. I created an account on Spoonflower as well as purchased some stock photos from Adobe Stock (although the one pictured above is not my stock photo yet but I placed my design on it to see how it would look) and other royalty free sites to get my vision out for others especially manufacturers to see. 

Lastly, as the months’ progress, I should have enough patterns and mockups to share my vision on social media. March and April are the months that I will get some of my most impressive pieces made since the market is in May. I have already created both Twitter and Instagram accounts with the handle of @pumpkinandbeau to get the ball rolling. Hopefully, my designs are different, interesting and eye catching enough to get the attention of my target audience as well as the intended retailers. Although my funds are low currently, its the creativity that counts. I always remind myself that it just takes one person willing to invest in my vision and so that is what I stay focused on.

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