It feels like a lifetime ago that we started our small handmade embroidery business, but here we are some 9 years later, we have amassed over 5000 likes on our facebook page, a whopping 2500+ Sales in our Etsy shop and our product lines continue to grow as we explore the various niches and specialties all the people have come to love from our products.
Originally our business was called Springbok Crafts and had a strong brand and reputation, which took us 8 years to grow into something we were happy with. But in all honesty there was always something at the back of our minds we weren't quite happy with. The back story into the name Springbok crafts and the colour scheme seen from our original website below had some meaning to us, not necessary the right meaning to everyone else!
As you can see, our original logo was a yellow horse on a green background named after one of our first ever horses 'Springbok' he was named this for obvious reasons, he sprung about like a springbok. Such a wonderful horse and why not name your business after such a fond memory? Little did we know that it would attract South Africans at every show or event we were attending with the conversation always starting...'So what part of South Africa are you from? followed by silence, or conversation ending awkwardness. For any of you who have met us you'll know we are friendly approachable and love a good chat, but this leading question always felt awkward which left the visitor generally moving on with no connection they thought they might have had. Cue reason 1 why a name change is a good idea.
Fast forward from 2014 a few years where our first rebrand came about and we dropped the horse logo in favour of something related, a needle and thread, our first logo looks a little dated now but carried a better visual representation of our products which drove far better feedback.
We were still finding our feet on the fantastic adventure of starting our own business, learning as we went along and putting things into practice. Learning from our mistakes and evolving in the process is always a good lesson, we started out doing baby blankets and dog blankets. Since then our quality has improved, the machines we use are slightly more commercial and our products now are a million miles away from the early days. It was around this time we started to receive calls from our displayed number on the website and people finding us in the yellow pages as a local business who 'does crafts' people would always ask. 'Do you do embroidery sets?' 'Can I buy scissors, and needles from you?' cue reason 2 for changing names, the name crafts at the end of Springbok Crafts was generating the wrong type of enquiry for us. Whilst we most certainly are not Google experts, or SEO whizz kids we also thought it might be affecting our Google rankings and how we appeared in search results etc.
I'll skip out Springbok Crafts version 3, which was probably by far the best, most cleanest logo of them all, and a website to match, in fact if you're interested in website history this website known as the wayback machine will let you look at websites previous versions over the years! I digress.
Now, here we find ourselves in 2022 nearing the end of the pandemic, and some sense of life returning to normal, we decided to do (we think) a final re-brand as mentioned in the title to a name we're happy with, It does not convey crafts, nor handmade and is indeed a little bit quirky. But we are happy as we want to attract retail customers who are genuinely looking for handmade personalised gifts for those special occasions. We've always found people love our Book cushions, and most recently our gingerbread people which is an ever growing library of various professions and hobbies which we plan on doing more of.
What's next? well as we've finally settled on a name we like, got ourselves a fancy new logo and are in the process of moving the website around a little, with many new categories which are more relevant to our audience. We've got some amazing ideas for new products in 2022 that will expand on our existing sweet spots and will have a focus on the various occasions in the calendar (Mothers day, Halloween etc...) and some new areas focusing on mythical, geeky and astronomy/star signs and many more. If there are other business owners out there considering re-branding, or not liking their initial decision from years ago, I'd like this blog to give you some reassurance that it is all good and positive to be changing things and nothing is set in stone.
We will be squirrelling away developing these ideas into reality as well as planning our appearances in 2022, we need to return the best in show cup to the Dorset Steam fair! We need to get out and about again at places like the Frome Cheese Show whilst finding new ones.
Separate to all of this we would really like your help in growing our online presence, and if it isn't to much to ask if you can like our posts, share and perhaps leave a google or trust pilot review we would be forever grateful!
So with all that said, as always, thanks for reading we hope you love the new look and feel of our website. The Nutty Squirrel is indeed here to stay. And we wish you all the best for 2022
Sarah - The true Nutty Squirrel