lookielous in the year 2016

young enough

I never thought that lookielous would not be a big success. I had the idea a year before I actually went for it. I thought certainly someone had already done it. I mean glasses as a hairband is a no brainer. I could not believe that it had not been done and saw this a sure fire thing.

Really I can partially blame Seth Godin, as he is a very powerful motivator. I had read his books and his blog for several years, so I was excited when he was giving a talk in Atlanta and I got tickets.

At the time I had for 17 years, owned and operated a Home staging company. Homestaging is now a household word, but trust me, in 1995 it was not. Let me remind you that in 1995 few people even had email addresses. I had painstakingly started a business, and created a market. I knew little about real estate and staging but, learned as I went along. Year by year managed to increase sales, and my earnings to a more than decent living, working VERY VERY hard. In doing so, I created an business model, marketed said model, learned to price, package and execute the concept. Seth told me I was not an entrepreneur, but a consultant. I really fancied myself a entrepreneur, so this was ego deflating. Also, entrepreneurs wear bow ties and talk tech language. Now a business God had spoken, I was not an entrepreneur, I believed him. It was a bit shaming, but I had a lot of shame (for everything) so I took that as a cue to do something REALLY entrepreneurial.

My pal Kristie had met me in Atlanta and was going to drive back to Nashville for a visit. On the drive home we discussed business ideas and the hairband reading glasses idea won.

Within weeks we had a prototype, a business plan, and started raising money to do lookie lous.

I was super energized by the work and had no problem working my day job and doing lookielous at night. I eventually sold my home staging company to offset my mounting debt from a recession, and divorce.

I found a manufacturer, secured the deal, got the product patented and the name trademarked. Had wonderful photo shoots, worked on lovely graphics and packaging. Things were moving on!! I am an entrepreneur!! Sent Seth an email. Ego back!!!

I did trade shows, some were wildly successful and others were complete and utter duds. I opened 100 accounts that first year.
Advertising broke even, and online sales were trickling in.

I realized after that first year that lookielous were seen as a novelty item. Like a snugli, but not as good. Buyers were not committed to the product, buying only once for fun, but I would not be building a business. Also, the product is not obvious. Even though our display eventually spelled it out, the consumer has to be told “they are reading glasses” .

In the interim we had some complaints. The nose piece was a little sharp. I had the manufacture revise that mold ($$$) and remedied that problem.

Lori Weiss did a terrific piece in Huffington post on lookielous and me. What a great day for lookielous! Our website had over 150,000 hits and it was our best sales day to date. Proving that if people hear about lookielous, they will buy them. Many of those customers continue to order today.

Here is the deal, lookie lous are really, really convenient. I overestimated that people would adapt to a new way to having your readers when you need them. Everyday, and everywhere I go I see folks with their reading glasses on their heads, tucked in a shirt or in their hand. If you wear reading glasses you simply cannot read without them. It seems people would rather be inconvenienced than adapt to a new way. Or maybe they are just too weird looking a la Google glass.

Money ran out, fundraising could not continue. My staff on two moved away for other ventures and I never rehired. I defaulted back to home design work.

Today, I am going to try to start to reconcile what to do next. Thanking the universe for my pal, Ginger, who also happens to be a master life coach, http://gingermoran.com/ , for reaching across states to keep me from drowning in my post menopausal despair. Let’s see what happens. Ego out.

-k.

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Throw Out Your Reading Glasses and Start Dating!

Can’t read restaurant menus? Maybe you need reading glasses. Yes, it happens to the best of us.
In tales of vanity, reading glasses make you look 100yrs. old, so you hide them but are forever doomed to order the daily special!

It’s another beautiful day in Paradise, Las Vegas. I am an empty nester.
I mean the nest is empty, really. The husband is gone and even the dog died, RIP faithful friend.
I am living alone for the first time in ages, a newly single woman after many years lived as a married one. I am finding that life is sometimes weird in new ways.
Case in point: the whole dating scene. Here in Vegas it’s interesting because the city attracts so many transients. I go to meet ups that I organize through an online travel community, attend local business networking events, peruse dating websites and belt out a tune or two at the local karaoke bar. My social circle includes lots of interesting people from various backgrounds. I try to be as much of my true self around others as possible.

To ‘be’ your ‘self’ you must first ‘know’ your ‘self’, right? Well I think I’ve figured out a few things about my’self’ and one of them is that I HATE to be seen in public in reading glasses! (Too ‘self’ conscious!) And I hate, when on dates, to have to pull them out. But I’m all but blind to read anything without them, so what to do?

Well the most fun thing I’ve done recently was something I really never thought could even make me smile.
About the time I started needing to wear reading glasses, Lookie Lous reading glasses hairband was invented by Kelly Coty of Nashville and I started wearing them. Thank goodness I could toss out my old reading glasses and still see the fine print. All while looking sexy at the same time. Bring on the dinner dates!
Before I discovered Lookies, I used to struggle and squint or get young children to read for me. If I was going out to eat, I’d call the restaurant ahead of time to know the menu so I wouldn’t have to try to read it once I got there. Now, I proudly wear my Lookie Lous readers. They are so unique everybody wants to know where to buy them. What a cool uni-sexy ‘readerband’ alternative to traditional reading glasses.

So even if the weirdness of dating remains at least the challenge of old lady reading glasses is resolved, so it’s off I go.
Now throw away your reading glasses, get some Lookie Lous and go get yourself a date.

Have a beautiful day,
from Paradise, Las Vegas

Sexy reading glasses Finally!!! Sun readers so handy and sleek at the pool or beach!! Almost invisible in her gorgeous hair. Lightwieght and handy on the beach, at the pool or to hold your hair back off your pretty face![/caption]

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Clear Gift Guide!

We have our last lookie lous® inspired gift guide for you. This list is inspired by the lookie lous® that started it all–the clear readers! We hope everyone has a happy Christmas tomorrow! Enjoy!

 From top to bottom (left to right): 1. Clear lookie lous® 2. Great Lakes Prism Paperweight 3. Teckell Foosball Table (I admit this is for the person that’s been really good all year!) 4. Blown Glass Piggy Bank 5. Page 1 Business Card Box 6. Ben Amun Lucite Cuff

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Vegas Violet Gift Guide!

Just like fabulous Las Vegas, this gift guide is for the fabulous, violet lover on your list. All the items are inspired by the super stylish Vegas Violet lookie lous®.

From left to right (top to bottom): 1. Hadovka Lamp by Dechem 2. Vegas Violet lookie lous® 3. Art Glass Perfume Bottle by Michael Trimpol 4. Mango Foulard Sheer Scarf  in Purple 5. Ellusionist Artifice Purple Playing Card Deck 6. Alligator Credit Card Case by Maison Takuya

There’s just 4 more days on the Indiegogo campaign!

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Nashville Green Gift Guide!

Today’s gift guide is inspired by Nashville Green lookie lous ®. Each item is from a Nashville based small business. If you’re lucky enough to be in town, this gift guide is for you!

From top to bottom (left to right): Nashville Green lookie lous® , Custom Hats from hatWRKS, Earrings from KORE Nashville, Cushions from Simple Syrup Design House, Anne Koplik Earrings from Fabu Unique Gift Boutique,  Lovely Floral Arrangements by The Tulip Tree

Check back tomorrow for the gift guide inspired by Miami Blue lookie lous®.

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