First 10 Orders in our Shop

YAY, we got our first 10 orders in our new online kawaii shop! It took a while since we opened on 23.3.2008 but we have to be patient with our new baby. The shipment went to Marseille in France. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for the future. Let’s see when we can pronounce the first 30 orders.

Cute kawaii fans samples

Today I finally received the samples I ordered from the factory I found on the trade fair in April. I got some really cute fans and the quality is really good. Not the usual bad quality I am used to get as samples. The only problem is the MOQ (Minimum Order Quantity) for these items. I would need to order at least 3,000 sets. So I am not sure yet if I am going to order them. That’s a lot of fans to sell.

Cute kawaii Fans

Gifts & Premium Fair

I went to the Gifts & Premium Fair the first time today. We were just curious what they are offering there and hoped that we are lucky and find something interesting for our shop. The fair was huge; so many halls. Every time I go to a trade fair I come back home with burning feet and legs. It is SO exhausting. You don’t realize it while you are there because there are so many things to see so you are totally distracted. But after leaving the premises you suddenly realize how many kilometres you must have walked. High Heels are a No-NO, you just wouldn’t make it through countless aisles of booths.

I was really lucky this time as I met a Japanese guy who is the official distributor of San-X. If you don’t know San-X, here is the official website. They have lots of cute kawaii-style characters like Rilakkuma (a cute bear) and Mamegoma (a baby seal). San-X didn’t have a booth there but the factory who is producing their products gave me the contact details. I will definitely contact them. Their items would fit perfectly into our shop.

Rilakkuma Bear
Rilakkuma, the cute Relax Bear

Mamegoma Seal
Mamegoma, a baby seal

We also found a contact for a printing shop here in Hong Kong who could make low quantity of t-shirts for us. The printing quality is really good so that could be a useful contact in the future. We plan to make our own t-shirts soon. And low quantities are always welcomed. There was also a company who could make our prints on stickers, so our customers could iron the designs themselves onto their t-shirts. But I personally think the printing shop is more interesting because the quality is just better.

Trade Fair visits

We are constantly on the lookout for new products. This year I decided to go to all trade fairs in Hong Kong that sound interesting. You never know what you will find. As I live in Hong Kong and there are so many international trade fairs here, I should take this chance and check them out.

Today, Alan and I went to the Gifts & Houseware Fair to look for some new ideas. And we really found some interesting things. Alan is really into ceramic knives and we found 2 factories who could manufacture them for us. I also found some factories for badges, cute fans, plastic accessories (mobile phone straps, bracelets etc.) and factories who produce blankets and doormats for one of my customers. Alan also found a company who makes iPhone skinz but unfortunately, their quality isn’t good enough for his expectations. He is doing a local chinese blog related to iPhone news, software etc. and always looking for new products that could be interesting to blog about.

For my my company modeS4u, the cute, kawaii-style fans and the badges could be interesting to add to our current collection. Here are some pictures of the fans, aren’t they cute?

cute fans
cute fans
cute fans

Finding the right product, part 3 “finally the right product”

So how did I finally find THE right product?

In summer 2006 I met a german, Philipp, who moved into the block next to us. He also has his own business on eBay, selling electronics like mobile batteries, USB cardreader, MP3 player etc. So we sat together quite often and discussed our ideas. I told him my ideas about selling fashion to Europe and he convinced me to check out Thailand. So we flew together to Bangkok and went for hours and days around Bangkok to find interesting suppliers. I found a few different manufacturers, all selling totally different fashion, so I bought some samples and put them online. Ebay is great for testing new products and see the response if a product could be sold or not. At the end, the products from one manufacturer were successful and we now order from him frequently. He has a huge range of products related to Japan, kawaii style and other cute items. It is a lot of work to find a new product or supplier, running around from company to company, negotiating, buying samples, putting them online and testing them. But in the end, I was successful and found one good supplier for me.

Tenshi Neko
Tenshi Neko bag from Thailand

But that wasn’t enough. I need more suppliers with different products. I wanted to have a bigger collection and variety. So I kept searching in Hong Kong and China for interesting looking fashion. It drove me almost nuts, every time when I went shopping, I just kept looking for suitable products. I couldn’t stop thinking about it anymore. I went to many wholesale markets, trade fairs, wholesale malls, companies my friends recommended etc. Finally, in the beginning of 2007 I found another supplier, a manufacturer from China who is manufacturing garment and accessories with styles like rockabilly, emo, gothic, rock etc. So I ordered some samples, tested them and found out that they sell really well. Now, we order from them very often and our wholesale customers love the items as well.

Stars bag
cool bag with stars from China

But I cannot stop searching for new products. I have to keep searching for the next hot item that could fit into our collection. When I find the next one, you will definitely find it in our shop. 🙂

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