Weed or wildflower? Redefining dandelions from suburban nuisances into playful and unique works of art. Watch our video... Read more
This project was successfully funded on April 21, 2013.
About this project
Weed /wēd/ (Noun) - 1. A wild plant growing where it is not wanted and in competition with cultivated plants.
This Kickstarter's goal is to create something remarkable*, dandelion paperweights, from what most consider a weed and discard.
Rewards for Our Backers
All of the rewards in this project are hand-made dandelion paperweights. The base of the paperweight will measure almost 2 inches in diameter. All dandelions will be shipped FREE of charge in the United States and will be shipped internationally for $5 extra.
Our first batch of dandelion paperweights have been given for all types of occasions, such as:
- Unique Mother's Day Gifts - Dandelion Paperweights
- Unique Father's Day Gifts - Dandelion Paperweights
- Unique Graduation Gifts - Dandelion Paperweights
- Unusual Birthdays and Anniversary Gifts
- Thank-You Gifts - Dandelion Paperweights
We had moved from city life to suburbia during winter. When spring finally arrived, we decided to go out for a walk with our two young daughters. We passed neighbors starting to work on their already well-manicured green lawns, some with crocuses and daffodils starting to sprout.
When we arrived back to our yard, our toddler started picking our dandelion puffs and playfully blowing the seeds.
At first we stopped her, thinking about how the dandelion seeds would spread. Then we realized that somewhere between her age and buying a home, dandelions had gone from amazing wish-grantors to annoying lawn pests. We each picked one up and made a wish. This simple act of watching dandelion seeds float away into the wind was remarkable.
The transformation that the dandelion goes through, from flower to seed puff, is what makes it so amazing.
Some have asked us if the yellow flower and the dandelion puff are the same flower. Yes they are! Watch our video and see the dandelion transform.
The Dandelion Paperweight
We decided to try capturing the geometric beauty of a dandelion, ready to disperse, in a virtually indestructive resin casing.
Trial and Error and Then... Success!
Over the course of a few months, we experimented with various materials and techniques to encase the dandelion. After a number of misteps, we were able to do it. The process will be documented as part of this project.
So far, we have created a batch of 40 dandelion paperweight (pictured above), which we sold through Etsy. Our feedback on Etsy has been 100% positive, including comments for superior customer service and quality. We've heard from our customers that they have been given for birthdays, anniversaries, graduations and thank-you presents. The goal of this Kickstarter is to go from prototype to larger-scale production (1000+) of these dandelion paperweights.
Even with larger production, each one is unique. The following are images of some of the initial batch that we created:
We are making a conscious effort to keep them each carefully created and handmade in the USA. Each dandelion paperweight will be sold with eco-friendly packaging.
Tracking Where the Dandelions End Up
We thought it would be interesting to track where the dandelions are sent. We've set up a websites, WeedWalla.com & DandelionPaperweights.com to track the dandelions and to allow backers of this project add their own message (optional). Each dandelion paperweight will have a unique number for identification purposes.
We've identified suppliers for the raw materials needed such as resin and molds. We'll be collecting the dandelions once winter ends and spring begins. We're imagining we'll have room much like this:
For the packaging we've identified distributors from the recycled labels to the bubble-padded envelopes. The following are the specific materials being used:
- Freshly Picked Dandelion Seed Puff
- Casting Resin and Catalyst
- Casting Mold
- Buffing/Sanding Supplies
- Round Recycled Label
- Bubble-padded envelope
How you can help...
By backing this project you'll allow us to buy supplies in great enough quantity to make the materials and production cost-effective. This will enable us to move from prototype phase to larger batch production. The funding will also help complete the WeedWalla.com & DandelionPaperweights.com websites, where we'll track the dandelions' final destination.
And finally you will help transform dandelions from the discarded weed to something beautiful.
To Order Dandelion Paperweights once this Kickstarter is complete, use these sites:
As a thanks for reading about our project, feel free to download the first bonus reward, a free make your own grass box...
Notes: Creative Commons Attribution: The song used in the video is Gentle Marimba to Alastair Cameron. A sound effect used in the video was created by Themfish on freesound.org.
Risks and challenges
We've been able to create and sell 40+ of the dandelion paperweights through Etsy.com. Our feedback on Etsy has been 100% positive, including comments for superior customer service and quality. We've heard from our customers that the dandelion paperweights have been given for birthdays, anniversaries, graduations and thank-you presents. The recipients have enjoyed their unique gift. We're confident that we can produce more using the same method we used to produce the first set.
One risk includes being able to acquire the supplies to complete the project on time. We have reduced this risk by identifying multiple suppliers for each required material. We'll begn ordering the supplies as soon as the project is funded.
We know that actualizing the vision of this project won't be easy, but we're prepared to deliver. If there are any hiccups along the way, we'll be sure to let you know.
Thank-you for considering our project.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
We have been getting requests to order multiple rewards. Kickstarter only allows you to order one. So we recommend that you choose one reward, and then calculate the additional cost of the other rewards you would like and add that to your total pledge. Then click on the comments and let us know exactly which rewards you want.
The dandelion paperweight is almost 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter.
Pledge $19 or more
8 backers Limited (12 left of 20)
Reward #0 - The Imperfect Dandelion Paperweight – As a result of making dandelion paperweights by hand, we end up with some paperweights with imperfections. Imperfections may include an imperfect base, surface or a couple of dandelion seeds out of place. For a pledge of $20 you will be pre-ordering one of these paperweights. If we run out of the imperfect ones, we'll send you a regular one.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $25 or more
19 backers Limited (1 left of 20)
Reward #1 - EARLY BIRD SPECIAL - MAY RELEASE – For a pledge of $25 you will be pre-ordering a dandelion paperweight from our first batch of dandelion paperweights. This is a significant discount (Save 68%) on the expected retail price of $79. Includes shipping within the USA.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $29 or more
13 backers Limited (487 left of 500)
*** FINAL WEEK SPECIAL ***
For a pledge of $29 you will be pre-ordering a dandelion paperweight from our final batch of dandelion paperweights. This is a significant discount (Save $50) on the expected retail price of $79. Includes shipping within the USA.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $39 or more
44 backers Limited (6 left of 50)
Reward #2 - SECOND EARLY BIRD - MAY RELEASE - For a pledge of $39 you will be pre-ordering a dandelion paperweight from our second batch of dandelion paperweights. This is a significant discount (Save 51%) on the expected retail price of $79. Includes shipping within the USA. Pick some weeds for mom. The goal is to be shipping in time for Mother's Day.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
Pledge $69 or more
5 backers Limited (94 left of 99)
Reward #5 - THE PAIR - JUNE RELEASE - A pair of dandelion paperweights. The pair of dandelions will be symbolically picked from the same plant.Estimated delivery:Ships anywhere in the world
- (59 days)