For the past seven years, my mom and I have been working hard to see our dream become a reality. We are so excited to finally say it is ready and it is time to launch the millybutton! October 1st we will launch our Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign and the millybutton will be available for pre-orders.
It is not easy to go from a sketch to a physical prototype. Anyone can dream but it takes a lot of creativity, hard work, time, money, patience, passion, and guts to make it a reality.
But when it finally starts coming together, it’s nothing short of magic.
And needless to say, we have learned a lot along the way.
In addition to getting a variety of opinions and ideas from other moms, Millybutton’s concept was honed thanks to us getting lots of hands-on experience. We have studied magnets, plastics, manufacturing styles, production ability, and safety…We’ve melted plastic beads in the oven, experimented with glue; the list goes on!
We experienced numerous problems with the first prototypes. From its size posing a possible choking hazard, to discovering that our magnets were so strong one erased the hard drive on a mother’s laptop—it’s been quite a journey.
As if that wasn’t enough, it took us four years to secure our US Utility Patent. FOUR years! Many people would have thrown in the towel, and for good reason. But my mom and I never gave up.
We kept at it! Slowly, things started to turn around. We learned about silicone. We began to make new prototypes—but this time, we prototyped with the manufacturer.
Our first foray into silicone was literally sticky. Hair kept getting stuck to it. It was gross. Also, the straps were too thin. Then, for the second prototype, the texture went from being too sticky to too rough, AND the straps were now somehow too short. In addition, the Millybutton was colorless and looked like a jellyfish. Why? Because we could not decide on a color.
But, after six months of prototyping it turned out to be a success.
I have to say that our Pittsburgh manufacturer was key to our success. They are a women-owned business, which is the icing on the cake for us, as we love the idea of a product made by moms, for moms. Thanks to them, the Millybutton won’t just be made in the USA, but in our hometown of Pittsburgh! Not having to wait for the product to ship from overseas also benefits our customers, and we will be able to keep up with our anticipated Amazon Launchpad orders.
The development team of product designers and engineers were successful in their material selection. They made millybutton safe & affordable. It’s nontoxic, medical grade, can be sterilized in a medical facility—or you can just throw it in the dishwasher if you need to.
In short: We did it!
Thank you all for believing in us. Your encouragement, enthusiasm and support will never, ever be forgotten.
Hey mom—I am so proud of us! What a journey it has been. I can’t believe we actually did it!
Now it’s just a countdown to launch!