I've been very busy this year, and it's time to share a little of what I've been doing.
At the end of 2017, Amazon invited me to design t-shirts for a new platform they were rolling out. It seems that the company sells A LOT of tees, and they decided that they wanted to get into the t-shirt business on the production end of things, rather than simply selling the shirts that other companies sell on their platform.
In any case, when they first approached me, it was August and I was in the middle of following up on leads from the National Stationery Show and preparing for the Christmas holiday rush. I didn't think much of Amazon's offer, other than to send a handful of designs to them, more out of curiosity than anything else.
Well, it turned out that people liked my designs. And that I enjoyed creating them. Long story short, I eventually realized that I liked it so much that I wanted to open my own t-shirt company apart from Amazon.
That didn't mean I wanted to stop designing for them, however. Currently, they sell more than 500 of my designs. No, what it meant was that I wanted to create my own brand of tees that I would sell under my own label.
At the time, I had three beautiful golden retrievers. Daisy, the oldest, was ill and not doing very well. Millie and Murphy, the puppy, made up our pack, a pack that is with me pretty much 24/7. What that meant was that when I was thinking up names for my new brand, I didn't have to look far. Actually, I only had to look as far as my feet, as the girls generally lounge around my desk when I'm working.
Eight months into 2018, just a year after Amazon first approached me, Island Dog T-Shirt Company is doing well. I've figured out which t-shirt styles I prefer, what kinds of designs people like, and what complementary products my customers want (can you say "coffee mugs"?). In late July, I also opened a second Island Dog shop, this one on Etsy, named Island Dog Tees, where I offer t-shirts, mugs and other gift items.
Going forward, I'll be adding to the collections I already offer, including Military Family tees, food & drink shirts, and my favorite, the Still Groovy collection. I hope you'll stop by and let me know what you think.
Proud Army Mom is just one of our Military Family Tees
I Eat Hole Foods is part of the Food & Drink collection of shirts
Still a Hippie (my favorite tee) is in the Retro Vintage Hipster collection
Best Sister Ever is part of my coffee mug collection - with 7 great accent colors to choose from
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