Monday, August 5, 2013

Wendy transforms walls into wonderlands

With the arrival of her second child, Wendy Stead of Blandford Forum decided to lay down her sales career and start her own business. At the same time, she was having difficulty locating the accessories she wanted to transform her daughter’s new room into a special place.

These twin challenges led to the formation of Enchanted Interiors, a home-based business creating magical themes for the spaces where children live and play.

But as Wendy discovered, the fairytale dream of earning an income from home, doing something you love while having the time needed to raise a family, doesn’t come easily.

Finding the right product in the right place

When the business began in early 2012, Wendy started by selling products online on a drop shipping basis. That is, she did not carry any stock as her suppliers shipped directly to her customers.

She soon discovered this to be an ineffective business model, as the supplier took the majority of the income, leaving her with very little. The solution seemed to come in the form of an artist she met in the USA, who designed and sold giant wall stickers.

Unfortunately, this approach produced equally dissatisfying results, with every order taking far too long to deliver and proving too expensive to be viable.

However, Wendy loved the idea of the huge stickers. Unable to find suitable suppliers, the logical next step was to consider making them herself.

Solving the problem with home-based manufacturing

The raw materials for Wendy’s business are attractive, imaginative images and high quality fabrics. She sought out UK designers to create the attractive artwork which she then converted, with the aid of a newly purchased printing and cutting machine, into giant fabric pictures.

After months of hard work, Wendy had finally discovered a business model that delivered the results she was looking for. This has allowed her to concentrate on growing the business, by adding to her range of images and raising awareness of the stickers, largely by working with Mummy bloggers.

Producing the images at home also allows Wendy to offer custom designs, based on pictures submitted by customers. Mastering the image conversion process has led to her becoming an expert on Adobe Illustrator, an application she hadn’t heard of six months ago.

This is just one of the many skills Wendy has learned on her journey to achieving her ambition of owning a small but successful business, with plenty of potential for growth.

To find out more about the high quality fabric wall art available from Enchanted Interiors, visit their website.

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