I Am Decals is a new way to tell your unique story as either a Decal or a T-Shirt through a personalized collection of Icons that expresses your hobbies, profession, relationships and other interests.
We've been working on this project for over a year and it's close to complete. However, as we near launch, we need your help to buy materials and supplies.
By December of this year, backers will receive a voucher code per item that can be redeemed on the website to build your own personalized Decal or T-Shirt. These voucher codes can also be gifted to someone else, so they can build their own personalized Decals or T-Shirts. It's a perfect gift for the holidays. Put them in a card, stuff them in a stocking, or gift them at the office holiday party!
I Am Decals are designed to share your story on the back window of your vehicle through a clean and modern collection of Icons personalized by you.
- Made to order from your personalized collection.
- High-quality vinyl that is rated to last 6 years outdoors through sun and weather.
- The collection is cut as one Decal by a computer controlled cutting-plotter to ensure perfect spacing and alignment.
- Easy to apply with just a few steps using the convenient application tabs and guide to help you get it even and straight.
- Free replacements forever if you have any problems applying it (no worries, we all make mistakes!), get a new car, or accidentally damage the decal. See our Forever Guarantee below for more info.
- Can also be applied to things like laptops, tablets, office windows, doors, etc.
We understand that things happen, but you can rest easy knowing that when you purchase a Decal from us, you get it for life. If at any time you need a new one we'll send it to you for free, including shipping.
- If your Decal isn't straight, has a ripple, or any other defect that makes it less than perfect, we'll send you a new one for free.
- If you decide that you want to move the Decal to a different part of the window, especially if it turns out that it's blocking your vision, please remove it and we'll send you a new one for free.
- If you accidentally damage the Decal, for example with an ice scraper or the window gets broken, we'll send you a new one for free.
- If you get a new car and want to put your Decal on it, we'll send you a new one for free.
Our goal isn't to just sell you a decal and walk away. Our goal is to provide you with a personalized Decal on your car, right now, and forever. We know there are things outside of your control, or perhaps you just make a mistake when applying it. No worries, we're all human. Either way, we'll send you a new Decal, for free. Including shipping costs.
To be clear, this replacement policy will be for a Decal with the same icons, though we will be announcing after launch a discount plan if you want to change a couple icons as well. There will be restrictions that will not affect normal customers to prevent people from taking advantage of our trust.
In short, you can back us with confidence!
In the feedback from early testers, we got a lot of ideas for different products to display our collections. The most common suggestion was t-shirts, so we decided it was so popular we had to offer them as an option.
- You will be able to have up to 8 per T-Shirt. (Above is just a prototype)
- Men's and women's styles, multiple sizes and color options will be available.
- The collection is cut from flexible material using the same cutting-plotter as the Decals, then applied with a heated press.
- We're still comparing t-shirt brands. Our focus is on high quality material and fit.
The website is very close to finished. You can check it out right now to see the catalog of Icons and even build a Collection! It's an important part of the process, and so a lot of effort has gone into making it fun and easy to use. There are currently over 700 Icons available in the catalog to use in your personalized collections, and we're always taking ideas for more if you don't find something that quite fits.
These features are already complete:
- Icon Catalog
- Collection Builder
- Decal Editor/Preview
- Cart & Ordering System
- Admin / Fulfillment System
We're still working on the T-Shirt Editor/Preview, but it will be finished before the delivery date. We also have plans for the long-term life of the site, including building community features, such as a suggestion system, social media integration and many other features.
We care about the entire experience that you will have, including the application process. So instead of using (and possibly damaging) a credit card during the application process, we’ll include a free application squeegee in every order. The squeegee is very helpful in making sure your decal is firmly adhered to the glass and minimizes air bubbles. After you’re done, use it to give your pet a good back scratch.
We will also include the option of ordering Youth sized T-shirts in 5 sizes (Youth XS - Youth XL) for children aged 4 to 16. Great for outfitting the whole family with their own personalized T-Shirts or as gifts. (There may need to be a limit on the number of icons that can fit on the smaller sizes.)
More colors to choose from for your personalized Decals. Match or contrast your car’s color. Make your decal even that much more personalized.
Five more colors to choose from for each T-Shirt type (Men’s, Womens, Youth) and each size. What's your favorite color?
After looking for decals to put on my car, I found that when I put together the ones that I liked, they just didn't look that great as a whole. I wanted a set that was clean and looked like it was put together on purpose. I was inspired to develop my own decals with a fixed height, but variable widths. My first prototypes looked similar to this:
After iterating on the design, sizes, color, and covering my car with dozens of collections, I finally found the design I wanted. I drew inspiration from the icons that are so common in our daily lives. This gives it a much more modern look, but also conveys that this is a purposeful collection of icons that represents something about me.
This collection is sort of a stress-test of the style guide I developed when prototyping. It has a vertically tall symbol (the hiker), a wide symbol (the boat), a design that requires bleed off the bottom (the mountain biker), and a symbol of something of a larger scale (the plane). It also covers a few different types of symbols, as each Icon has its own unique challenges when trying to convey its meaning in as clear a style as possible. Each Icon needs to remain recognizable and legible from a few car lengths behind while still looking good. There are also certain challenges with the cutting process that that have led to a lot of development. Certain designs might be too detailed for the cutter or the material, but we still want some detail in the design for overall aesthetics. It's a delicate balance.
After getting great feedback on the prototypes, we decided to create the catalog of icons and the website, and that led us to Kickstarter! We're looking forward to engaging the Kickstarter community in the creation process and the launch of I Am Decals.
Nathan Shafer has been a Web Developer for over a decade, and has a lot of experience launching consumer products and scaling web sites. He has been working on all of the technical aspects of the project as well as product design for over a year in between consulting contracts. As we launch this project, Nathan is giving it his full attention, and is very excited to be continuing development of the project and the manufacturing of Decals and T-Shirts.
Laura Shafer, a teacher by day, has been instrumental in supporting the project with marketing and public relations outreach. She has led the way on customer feedback and prototyping, and will continue to help with manufacturing and quality assurance.
Any additional funds past our goal will go directly into adding more color options for Decals and T-Shirts. Any unforeseen costs that come up will be covered by us.
Vouchers will be delivered to all Kickstarter Backers starting in November which will be redeemable on the website where you will build your custom collection(s). After you build your collection, shipment of the final product is expected to happen within 5 business days. Depending on your location and the shipping carrier, you should expect your product(s) in December.
Risks and challenges
This project is just about ready to be launched, and most of it is already finished. We have suppliers ready to go to order the materials and supplies needed. The only things we don't have lined up is the exact brand, weight and material of T-Shirt and T-Shirt vinyl we are going to use. However, we have many samples and will be nailing this down after a little bit more testing.
We have prototypes of all of the products, and have been beta testing all aspects of Decal production with real people. We've used an outsourced T-Shirt manufacturer for prototyping the T-Shirts, and investigated several techniques before deciding on the heat-pressed vinyl method. This method produces the highest quality result. It also happens to be the most economical for us and allows us to reuse existing equipment and processes, with only one additional piece of equipment needed.
As a web developer with years of experience, I don't foresee any issues with finishing the development of the website. I have designed it with scaling in mind and should be able to handle thousands of users easily. That said, every website has it's own unique growing pains and there may be some hitches that I will certainly address as soon as possible.
The biggest challenge, which is nice to have, is this project being overwhelmingly popular, and having a lot of interest from backers. This could cause a delay, but we will be able to forecast this easily as the campaign runs. Our campaign goal assumes a certain number of backers, and we will be able to easily handle 4-5 times that many without needing any extra help. If it ends up being too much, we have resources we can pull in to help with manufacturing and fulfillment to hopefully minimize any delay. The final products are manufactured entirely in-house, so once we get the stock of vinyl and t-shirts, we're good to go, and won't be waiting on any third parties to fulfill orders.
THANK YOU for your support!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)