This is part of uOpen’s ‘Meet The Maker’ interview series - your exclusive opportunity to get to know the real people and personalities behind the subscription boxes you know and love, and the ones you will soon come to!
Discover the fascinating stories behind how your favourite subscriptions originally came to be, the marvellous people involved in lovingly creating and curating each box, plus a few ‘behind the scenes’ snaps.
What sparked your decision to start up your box and how did you get started?
I was introduced to a craft subscription box and loved the idea. It was a bit young for my children, but I loved the concept. I felt I could take a different approach and create a kit that was less disposable, with creations and products to keep or re-use, and a focus on a broader range of subjects and activities. Like all families, our week is packed; school, clubs, work, children's parties. As a result, one-to-one time with children or as a family without distractions is often tough to fit in. I loved the idea of receiving a box regularly that would mark out some non-screen time and one-to-one time with the children.
I was definitely sparked by seeing my children’s reactions to discovering something new or that 'lightbulb moment' look when something just clicked into place. I wanted the I DID IT! activities to do just that for other children. Plus, I have a lifelong love of learning, so I knew I would love designing and creating new box ideas. I started to research the subscription box market to understand what was out there and validate the demand. I then took the leap to focus on setting up the business full time.
Describe your box in three words?
Fun, educational, inspiring.
Where did your box name come from?
Hearing my children say "I did it!", and seeing the smile of satisfaction when achieving or completing something, especially when they didn't think they could do it.
Are you a creator or curator?
What was your most popular box?
It's early days, ask me again in 6 months time. But there are lots of oohs and aahs when I talk about creating electrical circuits using dough.
How many people are involved with producing your subscription box?
There's me, Louise, I'm the founder. I research, design, create, source, market and fulfil the boxes. Clare is the education specialist (and also my sister) with over 25 years in education. Clare gives the boxes the educational stamp of approval. Amy (my niece), supports product development. Amy has just graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University, in 3D Product Design.
Of course, there are lots of other helpers and supporters in the background. It's a significant family effort. My two children who give the thumbs up or thumbs down to my ideas. My parents help with fulfilment and various elements of production and marketing. My husband, general validator and reality checker.
Which subscription boxes do you subscribe to?
My last subscription boxes were Kiwico and Letterbox Lab.
Name a celebrity subscriber you’d love to have as a customer?
I'd love David Walliams and his son to be a customer of an I DID IT! Double the Fun Box. If I had a pet subscription box, I would send it to his dog Bert.
If you could put anything in your box, with money or scarcity no object, what would it be?
A ticket on a Virgin Galactic tourist flight into space.
What do you love about uOpen?
Its presentation of each subscription box makes you want to sign up to them all!
I DID IT! | Meet The Maker
Today we had the pleasure of catching up with Louise Hartle, the founder of children's activity subscription box - I DID IT! A themed monthly subscription for kids aged between 5-11 years of age, the I DID IT! Activity Box helps parents with their children's learning as they explore subjects such as science, art, maths, technology and engineering each month - willing on those delightful 'light-bulb moments'.
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