13 Mar FabriStick® – The Journey #3
Karen Griffin of www.fabristick.co.uk gives us the second instalment in the creation and lauch of a new product.
Back to the ‘not-quite-spare’ room. I decided to treat him-indoors with a wall papered in old maps to provide a backdrop to his war-gaming adventures – they photograph the different games a lot – which is why this most engrossing and popular of sports (predominantly amongst men) is known in our house as Weirdy Bollux.
The infuriatingly addictive Pinterest turned up this new wall fabric product from the States. Printed to the design of your choice, it was targeted at the rental market. When you move, you simply peel it off and roll it up on its backing. And then unroll and stick on the new wall. The flaw of course is that few walls are the same size – although in the US, where it is patented, they may have uniform house build, who knows!
And this was my lightbulb moment. What if I could cut this fabric into wall stickers? What if, indeed.
So Lissie started designing for Nurseries – having decided our Avatar initially would be the Under-5’s. My job was to get some of the material.
Having found a manufacturer in the US willing to ship a minimum of 100 metres, and waiting the requisite 4 weeks for it to arrive by slow boat, you will understand that there was great excitement when the courier finally pulled up to deliver a very unpromising roll of grey-ish material with a linen-like texture.
The novelty wore off really quickly as we hit obstacle after obstacle. Printing onto the fabric was easy – the colours were vibrant and clear, – but cutting a substrate where the USP is ‘no tear’ turned out to be nearly a challenge too far. I had failed to ask the manufacturer the basic question. Does it cut? An evening phone call just provoked hilarity on their part, a mid-week wine and chocolate binge on mine.
Fortified with coffee the following morning, and surrounded by 96 metres of potentially redundant material, I determined to find a solution. The internet yielded so many different ways of configuring the cutting machines and alternative blades that I soon worked up a chart of 27 possible combinations and set to work with the help of a local retired engineer who eagerly volunteered to help (although he did admit that, with hindsight, he may have been foolish).
December 2013 – and we managed the first sheet of stickers. A little ragged around the edges, but they were stickers and ready for market testing.
To peruse Karen’s stickers go to www.fabristick.co.uk