How I grow business – recession to pandemic 7 – India calling


David Seyfried at Chelsea Harbour

After Decorex 2012, I was approached by an interior supply company in India.  They offered to take up all the collections except for furniture and screens, however, I was not prepared for it.  There were no beautiful sample books which interiors showrooms would have.  I was and still am, using a portfolio case to show large pieces of wallpaper in presentations in order to carry the maximum number of samples most efficiently.  Besides, because each product is handmade and expensive, I had a bare minimum of samples in my office most of which were returnable.  I have to manage samples strictly and samples go out on loan with a form.  I learnt from how Fromental deal with their expensive samples, though my request for a deposit is not as much as theirs.  I had to purchase a large amount of samples for this project while I explored how to have sample books made.  They must look luxurious and expensive to reflect the prices of my products despite being on a restricted budget.        


My first proper sample books


I also decided to take up an offer to open a show space within David Seyfried at Chelsea Harbour Design Centre as I recognised a need for permanent display of my products.  I had exhibited at Decorex for five consecutive years.  It was time to move on and reach out for associations in the interiors world with the world-famous address.  I needed to order display samples as well as display fixtures on top of all the samples books for India.  I could feel the business was growing and I was going with the flow, however, it was pretty scary.   Our show space eventually opened within David Seyfried on 11th of February 2013.  Homes and Gardens kindly wrote an article about the opening.

Luxury high-end market was definitely the right place to focus.  I presented samples and answered queries mainly from top designers’ studios.  I was thrilled to be involved in projects of superyachts.  Billionaires want to have something very unique and rare that none of their billionaire friends have ever seen.  Our wide range of bespoke services were absolutely the right fit.  What I did not know is the length of the lead time.  It takes four to five years to have a large superyacht built. I would normally receive queries at a design concept stage even before building permit is granted or a boat is built.  My suppliers in Japan were not at all happy or understanding because the lead time for both commercial and residential projects there is much shorter.


Shows space within David Seyfried at Chelsea Harbour
Shows space within David Seyfried at Chelsea Harbour
Kuniko Thompson

Kuniko Thompson

Founder of Biden Designs established in 2008. She is passionate about creating beautiful interiors working with designers, architects and Japanese craftsmen.

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