About this project
Introducing Poketti™ Plushies with a Pocket™
Designed by 13-year old Sydney Loew, Poketti are irresistibly cute, 7.5" square plush animal pillows made with the highest quality materials and care. Our Series1 collection includes Sydney the Penguin, Toni the Bunny, Roxi the Kitty and Baxter the Puppy — each with a sweet and useful pocket on the back in contrasting cotton fabric.
We are excited to launch our new company with Kickstarter to help us raise money for our first round of manufacturing. To make these a reality, we need lots of help, so please share our project with your friends!
A Family Affair. The true heart of Poketti comes from our daughters, Sydney (age 13) and Toni (age 11). Sydney designed the characters, and Toni helped bring their personalities to life.
My husband, Chris, and I have a background in industrial design and graphic design, but we've never created a product of our own. So, when Sydney was inspired by her entrepreneurial project at The Girls' Middle School, we decided to turn her simple and iconic designs into a real business. We're all learning new things through this venture, but the best part of Poketti is spending time together as a family working creatively toward a common goal.
Form + Function. Job one was to make our plush toys irresistibly cute. We've seen grown men go weak for the penguin (though they still wouldn't give us a business loan, ha!), but the true magic is the functional patch pocket on the back. It's made from carefully selected 100% cotton material with a plush lining to keep your little treasures safe and easy to find.
Our back pocket, with a signature Poketti tab, is 4x5 inches and can store your cell phone, eyeglasses, small TV remote, jewelry, special notes, EpiPen, tooth fairy offerings...and of course, a Poketti notebook to capture those late-night strokes of genius. Just keep one of these little guys near your bed and you'll never go hunting for something to write on again.
Because Poketti characters will always translate to graphical icons, we can explore accessories such as the companion notebook we are offering as a Kickstarter reward. We are excited by the prospect of further developing our characters and their distinct personalities, similar to the Japanese line Rilakkuma, or even Hello Kitty.
We need your help! We are seeking funds and early support for our first manufacturing order, including safety testing for our plush toys, which will be conducted by Bureau Veritas. Ordering in larger quantities makes sense from a manufacturing and shipping standpoint, specifically to keep our unit cost down and to have enough inventory while we build up our distribution channels.
Considering the sizable cost of our first order, we're hoping that you'll share our project with your friends so we can exceed our goal. Investing in us now is basically pre-ordering a Poketti Plushie —so there's definitely something special in it for you, too!
Giving Back. Along with teaching our daughters to be money-grubbing tycoons ;-), we are also committed to using Poketti in more important ways. We intend to share Poketti smiles and utility with children's hospitals, and a portion of our proceeds will benefit institutions such as the ASPCA who provide comfort to Poketti's real-life counterparts.
Thank you for your support of Poketti!
- Chris and Kris Loew
(along with Sydney and Toni, our Cuteness Control Officers)
Risks and challenges
We looked into making our product in America, but quickly learned that China is the only viable place for stuffed toy manufacturing. We selected an experienced Chicago-based partner to work with us: Dennis at RB Toy. He has been an invaluable mentor, teaching us about the stuffed toy business and acting as liaison with his trusted Chinese factory (which also produces products for Unicef). They have jumped through hoops to help develop these four prototypes to our very precise specifications. The challenge was marrying "plush" with "apparel" fabric, something that is not commonly done in large scale stuffed toy manufacturing.
Our risk lies mainly in inventory management and the cost of manufacturing on such a large scale. The 90-day manufacturing cycle means we need to order higher quantities, and while we welcome the lower unit cost, it requires a large outlay of cash. Which is why we are turning to Kickstarter. With this Kickstarter project, we can raise funds for the order and get early interest in our products...and when the Poketti Plushies arrive in 90 days, many of them will already have a home!
Beyond your investment, we would love your input on where our Poketti Plushes would best be sold. We are currently strategizing our distribution plan and looking for suitable retail outlets so if you have any ideas, please let us know!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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