Sara and Dina Seewald are the co-founders of iKippah, a fashion company specializing in designer yarmulkas for boys.
What inspired you to start your business?
Dressing up boys can be a huge issue for Jewish mothers. We accessorize an entire outfit–with matching shirt, pants, sweater and shoes–and then, when it comes to the yarmulka, we end up dumping some crumpled piece of stitched velvet on their heads.
We decided to create a designer yarmulka line of our own.
Tell us a little bit about your business?
We started out very small: two basic yarmulke designs and a Facebook page. It was literally a matter of days before our Facebook page had over a thousand likes and our original stock was all sold out. It was really amazing! There was a clearly a need for it within the Jewish community, and people were just lapping up our products.
Our company has grown exponentially over the last two years. We have sold tens of thousands of iKippahs in more than ten different countries, and we now release five new designs each month.
How did CHYE help you?
Every successful business has its starting-out stage. You have a fun idea, it seems to be catching on, and you find yourself quickly growing. There comes a point, though, where your original model reaches its peaks and your growth begins to stagnate. If you want to take your business to the next level, you have to restructure the operation and learn to manage things more efficiently.
It was here that CHYE’s help was invaluable.
We first met with Mr Yehuda Berg, CHYE business counselor, who sat with us and got a full understanding of our company. Yehuda then set us up with CHYE business mentor—Shmuli Goldman. Shmuli guided us through every step of restructuring our business—from marketing and customer service, to design, manufacturing and internet sales. He helped us put systems in place to manage continued growth, while keeping operating costs down at the same time.
I can’t stress enough how helpful and caring Shmuli was. Our initial meeting was supposed to last only an hour, but Shmuli–despite his son getting engaged the day before!–sat with us for over three hours, giving expert insight into every aspect of our business.
My suggestion to any budding entrepreneur: Tap into this phenomenal resource! Anyone in the business world would kill to have such experienced advice at their disposal, and here you have it in your very own backyard. Make the most of it!
To find out more about CHYE programs visit CHYE.info