Hello and thank you very much for your interest in our Kickstarter Project. What we plan to briefly show you here is who we are, clearly explain our project goals, timeline as well as the budget we have set out for our project. And our project will solve one of today's biggest issues with furniture purchasing - customization. 99% of all furniture today is pre-manufactured and offered with absolutely no customization forcing people on endless hunts for that piece or pieces that will complete a room, a hallway, etc. Below we lay out how we plan on solving this problem offering several designs of furniture, which any aspect can be customized, at a competitive price and quality to what is currently mass produced.
Furniture production now has the opportunity to come full circle from the time when every human being cut down his own tree to make his own furniture. Today society might function differently, but we still desire customized furniture. We have been making compromises for many decades, by being forced to buy what is affordable in stores, rather than making what we want. Our process for customized ordering will soon allow people to connect with the past and take furniture making into the future.
Who we are -
I am Matt Davis and along with partner Kevin Belton we make up HSMFurniture.com. We have been in business in one form or another for the past 11 years dealing with almost exclusively internet furniture sales of mostly discounted, damage repaired and closeout furniture. In dealing with this type of furnitures, most of the product we have access to comes in the form of one piece purchases(like 30 of the same discontinued sofa tables at a heavily discounted price but no matching items) - no complete sets. Because of the low price the sales have been very good to us with close to 20 million dollars in sales total over those 11 years. But we also noticed a trend of folks who would almost purchase products but there was one small issue which prevented them from doing so. It could be the size, the color, the wrong fabric the list goes on and on. For every sale we’ve had in the past at least one other person was close to purchasing outside of one small detail. We have tried to offset this loss in sales in the past by offering repair to go in and customize furniture but often this is too pricey an option even with the deep discounts offered. So there is a real need for customizable furniture and with all furniture being mass produced and/or imported there is absolutely no options out there unless you are in the top 1% of wage earners in America(extremely expensive).
Project Goals -
What we plan to do with our project funding is purchase a large scaled 3d Printer, the Gigabot by Re:3D, develop and produce from start to finish 5-10 easily replicated furniture accent pieces and utilize local craftsmen to complete each keeping total production costs of each individual piece to between $85-$150. This will enable us to offer our chosen designs at a very competitive price to what is available currently with the added benefit of complete customization. That will be the key selling point of this new line of furniture. The size, whether it has drawers or not(or more), the finish, upholstery - just about every discernable detail that defines furniture will be available to customize - at no extra charge! Adjusting the size, design, etc. is as simple as changing the specs in the computer before printing. And these 5-10 pieces will be our foray into offering 3d printed furniture marketed through our existing website as well as additional online sales forums along with our local warehouse/showroom.
Project Background Information -
Our research has shown that not only can we print a piece of furniture using technology available off the shelf but can print Wood Furniture. 3DPrintedSolids.com offers a wood resin filament which can be purchased for use with the Gigabot. This specialized filament looks, smells and acts like wood - it can be sanded, stained, veneered, etc. For a more accurate description please check out the youtube video here, http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=3d+printer+wood
Once the designs are drawn up and we start to print we will then engage the help of local Finishers/Builders and Upholsterers to complete each piece to perfection. This is one of our key advantages in succeeding with this venture where someone in a different part of the country would not be able to duplicate. Being in High Point, NC we still have access to some of the best finishers, builders and upholsterers in the world. You’ll notice I said still above and the reason being is because these craftsmen are rapidly going the way of the dinosaur. With 97% of all furniture being manufactured overseas now there really is no current need for a replacement generation of craftsmen. But currently there are still some of these artisan’s here today with most being underutilized and/or switching to other work. Please watch our video carefully to see a couple in action. The gentleman doing the finishing in our video builds for Baker and Swaim Furniture on a contract basis. For those of you not familiar with either of those I think it is best explained in analogy. Baker and Swaim are the Bentley, Aston Martin and Ferrari of furniture - there is nothing better. And because of the current trend of manufacturing moving overseas we have access to the best of the best Furniture Artisans to complete our pieces out to a quality level anyone would be proud of.
We plan on launching our campaign in late June 2014 with completion of funding due in around the end of August. From this point we purchase the Gigabot 3D Printer along with all supporting materials and start to upload potential designs. We plan on working with two local designers as well as using influences from some of the top furniture names such as Ralph Lauren Home, Baker and Thomasville. We will be emailing potential designs to all backers looking for feedback on your favorites with a goal of picking no less than 5 and no more than 10 as our starting lineup so to speak. Once we have the finalists we start production printing, which should be mid September, and will then product test for durability before sending the pieces off for finishing, veneering, upholstery etc. This will enable us to tweak any designs and reprint should it be necessary with an end goal of offering furniture that will compete with existing furniture in look, overall quality and most of all price all the while with the added benefit of complete customization. We have planned for two weeks of product testing, tweaking and completion of final production. At this point we will send all pieces off to our local craftsmen to be completed which should only take a couple days but we will budget another 2 weeks. Once each piece is completed we will photograph professionally as well as produce a video demonstrating the process, durability, etc of each for help with online sales. Once this is complete we will start with the reward process as promised.
Below is our planned budget for the project:
$12,000 Kickstarter Goal
- 20% for fees of using Crowdfunding Forum
-$5995 - Gigabot Printer
-$1000 - Wood Resin Filament
-$1000 - Design Consultation
-$1500 - Finishing/Veneering/Upholstery Fees
$105 = Variable/Overflow
As you can see above we haven’t left much room for error but there are a couple reasons for that. First, $12000 is the goal but not the limit. Many projects on kickstarter earn well past their initial goal and we think ours is one that could do the same. This idea is one that we have not seen out there yet on the internet anywhere, certainly no one in our area has any notions of utilizing this technology(The Furniture Manufacturing industry is one of the more conservative and resistant to change industries I have ever seen), and its just a plain good idea. But, should we only just meet our goal at $12000 we will have the flexibility of scaling back production somewhat. This is why above we reference 5-10 furniture designs. So we will be able to adjust accordingly and still complete our goals successfully.
First of all we would like to say thank you once again for taking the time to review our project and we also encourage you to contribute. We have a great rewards program set up so any monies invested will compensated in return and what an opportunity to get in on the future of how we live. Technology is driving just about every aspect of our daily lives - why should our furniture be any different. Once we start to produce furniture and people see what is possible I think most folks will feel like “why didn’t I think of that” because it will seem so obvious. So thank you one more time and please feel free to contact us anytime with questions or comments.