Saturday, 30 June 2012

Testing: Round 1

With my new felt arriving this morning (great service, considering I only ordered yesterday at 3pm) I was able to finish up the rest of the fruit set, so I am now ready to carry out the testing, what do you think?

Some of the items I shouldnt have to set fire to as they are small enough but I think the pear and banana are definately going up in flames (not too many I hope!)

I should also be able to sew up the entire sandwich set tonight, as there is no stuffing involved and then I can concentrate on the vegetable set.

Testing results to follow....

Friday, 29 June 2012

What a week!

So it's been almost a week since ive wrote a new post, how time flies!

I brought a brilliant pack from a place called 'Conformance' which lays out everything I need to include in my technical file. It has a great checklist, to make sure each toy is safe and some great pictures on how to do the testing.

I am quite close to being able to do all my safety tests on the fruit set,  they are looking so good, Amara even tries to eat them! I have also put in a new order today for different coloured felt ready to sew up the fruit set and the sandwich set, so they should be with me early next week.

So I've been in contact with a lovely lady on Facebook. She messaged me out of the blue and said she would love to help me create a logo. I cannot believe the kindness of people sometimes. What we have been working on looks amazing and 1000x better then what I cam up with, so watch this space for a new logo!

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Getting artsy

So it's 2.36am and I am still not in bed. I have too many ideas running around in my head, some which have lead to me feeling very satisfied and hopefully mean I can settle down to sleep, ready for the 6am wake up call from Amara!
Tonight has been an artsy night as I have sat down and drawn the first designs of 18 products. These will comprise of my first three sets, so once the felt arrives I can really crack on with trialing the 'Fruit Bowl Set'

Now this is the thing I am really happy about from tonight, I have had a go at creating a logo (You might think I am getting ahead of myself, but I actually need it sorted in order to create a section in my tech file, as I dont intend on having labels sewn onto my products. Instead opting for a card label which will accompany the product brought) and I really feel it captures what Amara's Market is about. What do you think? 

I am going to add it to my personal Facebook account so I can gauge people's opinions of it and whether they think it needs tweaking at all. Feel free to leave a comment here on your views of it too!

Friday, 22 June 2012

The good and the bad

It's always the way... something good happens, then something equally as bad follows...

The good
So I have been fortunate in finding two lovely people to be my testers for my first product the 'Fruit bowl set'. As my products are nowhere near being CE marked I am offering these products as 'gifts' in return for a small review and maybe some pics to use here. I am hoping that I can use it as a good bit of market research. The 'Fruit bowl set' contains a whole banana, 2x apple slices, orange slices, banana slices, a watermelon slice, 2-3 half strawberries and kiwi slices. Quite a good range I think, and should allow the children to understand some different shapes, as well as the different fruits available. Kiwi's had to make an appearance seeing as these are Amara's favourite fruit!

The Bad
I am stumbled across a hurdle, which I am hoping is just a small one *crosses fingers*. The food imitations regulation. I have searched so much online, but everything seems to be linked with soaps that look like bits of food, mainly slices of cakes and I cannot find anything linked with felt food. So I am just waiting for Trading standards to get in contact with me and I can quiz them over this.

But back to a more happier note: I have made my first order with the felt supplier that I will be using. I have never used their felt before, but it looks lovely. I have ordered a colour chart, so I can hopfully match things accurately; I want the foods to be a realistic as possible. This felt will go towards Amara's set as well as my two testers, and give me a good indicator on how well it will work with my products.

So watch this space... I should be able to add lovely pics of my 1st potential product in Amara's Market!

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Ideas, ideas, ideas...

I've been very lucky today in that both suppliers I am hoping to use have provided me with the documentation that proves their products comply with EN.71 This is one of the first steps needed to get the ball rolling. The other is communication with Trading Standards.  I have sent them an email, so it's all just a waiting game.

So in the mean time I have been thinking of product ranges I can start off making and selling. I have decided on 3-4 sets of foods as my base. I have so many more ideas in the pipe line, but dont want to get ahead of myself, there is always room for expansion at a later date. So my first pack will be fruit, things such as banana, apple, grapes, kiwi etc. Second pack will be vegtables like mushrooms, carrots, cabbage. My third potential set is meat/fish based, and the final set would be a pizza making set, where you are able to select up to 3 toppings, in addtion to the usual cheese and tomato base. I think Amara would enjoy creating a pizza and popping it in her little oven to cook, and serving up a fruit salad so I hope your children would too!

Setting the foundations

Welcome all.

You have stumbled across my new adventure, the world of felt food.

It all came about rather nicely really. With the help of my brother, I wanted to make my daughter, Amara, a play kitchen for her 2nd birthday and thought some felt food would accompany it nicely. I have always loved crafts and sewing from a young age, but up until recently it had been on the back burner. So with a new sewing machine and a few supplies the first foods were created. This of course set the mind wondering to where this could lead me. Many people had commented on how much they loved the foods, and that their children would love something like it. Hense the begginings of  'Amara's Market'

I am aiming to make and sell my felt food products, but it is in the very early stages of development yet, what with obtaining vital parts like CE marks and conforming to all the regulations. Once I am passed that *daunting* hurdle I know it will be a huge success.

This blog is a way to keep track of my thoughts over the next few months in trying to become self employed and the proud owner of 'Amara's Market'