About this project
missed the Kickstarter deadline?
purchase via our facebook page. be sure to like us for special deals and to see how others are using top charms.
see what people are saying about top charms:
Snappy Idea!" - Mashable
"The charms can go anywhere you want to fit them." - CNET
"cool form of social permanence" - AllFacebook
"A nice and quirky way of bringing a section of our virtual world into reality." - Redmond Pie
"Awesome Project. We support it :)" - The Gadget Flow
what are top charms?
our photo charm kit and accompanying Facebook application let you wear your favorite Facebook, Instagram and other photos.
how does it work?
first, choose an image to wear using our Facebook app. select from Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, Picasa or your desktop:
next, resize and crop it:
then, print and punch your image with the photo paper and photo punch included in the top charms kit:
insert and enclose the image in one of your charms:
lastly, pick a fun way to wear your charms:
you can also share which image you are wearing and why using the top charms Facebook app:
how do you wear them?
top charms' patent-pending design lets you wear them many different ways. the only limit is your imagination. check out the creativity of our prototype users!
like our facebook page to get inspired by how others wear top charms.
the top charms story:
hey Kickstarter! i'm peter, a product designer from menlo park, california which is also the home of Facebook.
ever since joining Facebook, i've been fascinated with how and why people use it. i figured, if i could design a consumer product that incorporated the popular features of Facebook, people would want to use my product too!
after a late night brainstorming session filled with coffee and pie, I decided my product should include photos, be updatable like a status message and keep you close to the people and things you care about.
so, in went time and effort and caffeine and sugar, and out came...top charms.
why wear top charms?
for generations, people have worn totems, badges, lockets and buttons as a way of keeping things close to them, well...close to them! top charms are a fun, modern version of this age-old tradition.
- if your cousin is going through a rough time, wear her image to let her know you're thinking about her.
- wear your pets!
- proudly display your favorite team's logo. if they don't make the playoffs, less-proudly display your second favorite team.
- wear your grandparents. wear your grandkids!
- reveal a personal goal to friends and keep a daily reminder of the goal with you at all times.
- wear any image you want, any way you want!
top charms let you share little pieces of your life, online and offline.
in addition, they're just plain fun! i mean, who doesn't like magnets? they'll make a great holiday gift for your Facebook-obsessed friend or family member.
do I need to use Facebook to use top charms?
nope! top charms can be used solely as a physical product, similar to lockets. some of your photos may not need to be resized to fit in the charms. simply punch them with the included photo punch and insert them in your charms.
for photos that do need to be resized, our Facebook app is still not a requirement. feel free to use photoshop or one of many other free, online photo resizing tools.
what is included in the top charms kit?
- four magnetic photo charms (either purple, pink and black or all black)
- two short straps for wearing an individual charm
- one long strap for wearing up to three charms
- one circular photo punch
- three pieces of 4x6" photo paper
what is the manufacturing plan?
top charms were designed and prototyped in the bay area with plans to manufacture in shanghai.
we are excited to partner with a respected manufacturer who makes products for two household name brands. i have visited the manufacturing facilities and conducted a small test run to ensure quality standards will be met.
immediately if/when the kickstarter goal is reached, I will place an initial order with our manufacturer. subsequent orders will be placed as needed if/when the kickstarter goal is exceeded. that rhymed. the kits will be air shipped from shanghai to my home and I, along with my family (I'm looking at you Mikey), will individually package the kits and send them to you.
the accompanying Facebook application was built with guidance from one of facebook's original Preferred Developers, a distinction given to only 15 web development agencies who met strict criteria set forth by Facebook.
the app has undergone a series of revisions and is ready to launch. it will go live on or before the end of the campaign.
how are they made?
each charm consists of two symmetrical, abs plastic halves housing strong, neodymium magnets. each half consists of four parts: a lens cap and lens which are ultrasonically welded together, magnets and magnet housings.
together, the two charm halves magnetically enclose your photo. in addition to the magnetic hold, we have applied a pinch-fit for a more secure enclosure. just pinch the charm tight after the magnets have done their thing.
numerous design iterations and months of real world testing have resulted in a quality product that will withstand the rigors of daily use.
the Facebook application is built in PHP, MySQL, and the facebook API. It uses the Codeigniter framework, which is an MVC (Model-View-Controller) system built in PHP.
The application also utilizes ImageMagick, a powerful image processor for linux to crop, format, and handle image uploading. It lives on a canvased iframe application.
we recently integrated Chute's Media Chooser (thx Greg!) into our Facebook app which will allow you to resize, print and wear Instagram, Facebook, Picasa and Flickr photos.
simplicity and ease of use were emphasized when building the app, asking ourselves, "could grandma use this?"
our biggest goal with Kickstarter is to get top charms out into the world so they can be enjoyed by the public. thus, every reward (except for reward #1) includes at least a top charms kit.
every reward level includes a note of thanks and a top charms sticker.
some award levels also include a pair of silver-tone, metal cufflink backs designed to be worn with your top charms. insert one cufflink back into each half of a charm to create custom cufflinks for any occasion!
additionally some awards include a t-shirt (white american apparel jersey) that can be customized with one of your charms. wear half the charm under the shirt and the other half atop the shirt to complete the logo. if you select a reward that includes a shirt, we will ask for your size/gender at the end of the campaign.
manufacturing is expensive! your pledge will be earmarked toward manufacturing, packaging and shipping costs.
a heart-felt thank you to everyone whom has helped us get this far, including but not limited to:
adam d, alan w, ale z, amy v, audrey c, aurora t, barbara r, ben l, brian c, chris g, cody r, cormac e, cynthia s, dan b, dan s, dave l, deborah r, ed h, eli y, elin b, emily g, emily p, eric j, erik s, greg l, greg n, jackson p, jeff p, joe g, john b, juan m, lindy p, james z, justin k, klari r, marc f, mark and sally j, mateo g, matt v, michael c, michael i, michael d, nate d, owen p, sean f, tim r, marcelo c, reshna s, rich s, ro c, rob s, roger r, ron r, stuart a, susan b, and ted j.
we are humbled by the support.
top charms is not endorsed by Facebook or Instagram (but we love them). top charms are not suitable for pets or children.
Risks and challenges
manufacturing brings a number of inherent risks, including quality control. several components make up the top charms kit which provides several opportunities for error, in not only the manufacturing process, but in packaging the components as well.
in addition, getting the finished product from overseas to your doorstep requires a complex, multi-step procedure. finished kits must be transported from the factory to the airport by a third party company before being air-freighted to the US and cleared through customs. then, I have to get the kits from SFO back to my home, and not gonna lie, my engine light is on.
the Facebook application shoulders additional risks as well. building on a third party platform means being at the mercy of another company's road map. portions of the top charms app have already been rebuilt to accommodate authentication changes implemented by Facebook. should they make additional changes further accommodations will need to be made.
we have sought advice from the creators of hit products such as Slap Bracelets and Jibbitz™ as well as successful Kickstarter project owners. we are confident that teaming up with the right people coupled with the loyal support of family and friends will help mitigate risks.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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