MissJ Design was started in 2012 by Anthony Taylor and Olga Jaszewska as a result of us being woefully unhappy with their current work arrangements within the corporate sector. Olga was busting her back at Ikea and I had no satisfaction in working for a small company doing nightclub design and interior design fitting. Initially Olga was the one who wanted to try her hand at a small range of very simple pendants that were laser cut, she had no idea how they would be sold and by whom.
Being the overly bearing brute that I am I took over and soon started to create a bigger more colourful version of her vision, we soon started to make my creations and within a few months MissJ had essentially become Bear’s domain. Olga was not that fussed as she still had input at senior levels and she had just started a far more enticing job at a bespoke bed makers company with much nicer people to work with.
It took us another 6 months before we realised that if we were going to make the business work we had to buy our own machines and not long after that I was importing a laser cutter for a quarter of the price as it would have been here in Europe and the UK. However there were certain downsides to this avenue, it took an entire month for it to arrive on British shores after tracking it from Jinan in China to San Francisco of all places on route through the South China sea and the ever present danger of the Andaman sea.
Let this be valuable information to anyone who is considering importing machinery from abroad, especially China, it is cheaper but the support is woeful. The manuals are in broken English and the support is around 8 hours behind hence many a late night will be spent on Skype if something may go wrong. The other thing is that when Chinese is translated by google we get the most absurd things, I once got a burnt duck in a car tyre as an explanation of my machine’s software malfunction, can anyone say buyers beware!
The upswing of this is that I had to teach myself how to fix laser cutters and now I am in a position to teach others how to successfully maintain their machines themselves, this would mean no more costly technicians taking a thousand quid for a 4 hour calibration from you.
I have actually started to look into the possibility of teaching people how to use the machines as well as the maintenance aspect of owning the machines, the same applies to our 3d printers although in all honesty they are very simple machines to run, the only complicated aspects to a 3d printer are its electronics, the other mechanics are simple enough to fix.
So in addition to offering 3d design and manufacturing services which include laser cutting, 3d printing and 3d scanning, we will soon be able to offer short courses in small business enterprise and laser cutting machine operation and maintenance as well 3d printing operation and maintenance.
We sell our work through Etsy as well as having a dedicated e-commerce website called missj.eu which has seen more changes than an IKEA showroom, however we seem to be getting to the finishing line with that one. We have also seen modest success and recognition in that we have been featured in ELLE décor magazine, Fabulous magazine in the Sunday edition of the SUN and INSIDEKent magazine alongside a few other blogs and so forth. We also did a 2 part interview on 3D printing today which is based out of Los Angeles and has a 7 figure subscribership which is no mean feat.
All in all we are happy with where the business is going but recognise that getting wholesalers and shops to carry our stock is the most important step MissJ can take at the moment, the business really is at that point where she has to grow exponentially to survive the tough times. As we all know, the world is in a really bad place and we are facing the largest financial crash the planet has ever experienced due to the fiat currency scam of a system coming to an end but the upshot of all of this is that small business and enterprise will thrive in the aftermath as people will have lost all faith in the system and the big corporate entities, I predict a great boom for the everyday people trying to sell their wares.
The future may be uncertain but we have faith in ourselves and our business and her products, all we need now is a bit of luck and some hard work to get us through.