living the life fantastic:

  • sharp as a tack, or dumb as a doornail?

    Interview with Robin Delargy of LooLoo's Box and Fantasticality
    (dancing with myself)

    Q: Why on earth would someone change a business name that already has a following?

    A: Good question. I can state with great certainty that it isn't a decision that's made lightly. In my case, I've been knocking the idea around the back of my mind since shortly after LooLoo's Box was launched.

    Q: Really? Why's that?

    A: Well, when LooLoo's Box was conceived, back in 2009, I was partnered up with a longtime friend. In fact, she was the one who convinced me to make the leap and go pro. We came up with the name, the story and the logo together. However, the friendship didn't survive the startup, and she exited not only the business, but my life. I still don't really understand it, but I have had to learn to accept it. I hope she is well. Anyway, LooLoo's Box has never really felt 'mine', but it seemed to be working, so hey - no big deal.

    Q: You've been pondering a change since 2009?

    A: Yes, but I never could settle on a new name. I considered using my name, but 'Delargy' isn't the easiest name for people to pronounce, and my full name 'Robin Taylor Delargy' just seems too formal for my type of jewelry. I needed a name that made sense in terms of my style, and ideally one I didn't need to explain. I wanted a name that didn't elicit occasional snickers, either from people associating the name and logo with a kitty litter box, or from infantile men whose mind immediately conjured up another meaning for the word 'box'. Sigh... I needed a name that not only felt right, but that I could also secure the domain for. Everything I tried was taken. This went on for years.

    Fast forward to January 2015. I was showing my elderly mother some of the features of her new smartphone. I demonstrated voice searching by saying "LooLoo's Box"... and every single Google result started with 'LuLu' or 'Lou Lou'. LooLoo was nowhere to be found, at least not on the first page - and that's the only page that matters.

    Q: Wow, that must have been quite a shock!

    A: You bet it was! It also told me - in no uncertain terms - that I was missing business. The only people who were finding me were those who knew to spell LooLoo's box with double O's. I was missing word of mouth business, because who on earth is going to tell their friend "Yeah, I got this wicked cuff from LooLoo's Box, spelled L-O-O- L-O-O!"

    Q: I wouldn't think to do that, no.

    A: As I sat at my dining room table trying to work on my business goals for the year, I realized that I couldn't really move forward until I'd sorted out the name. I didn't want to invest more time and money into a name that wasn't working for me.

    And then it hit me! I use the slang term 'fantastical' quite often, so Fantasticality was a natural progression. I did a quick domain search - available, whew! - and bought it on the spot. The mental picure of the F as a dragon sprang up before my eyes almost fully realized, so I sketched it, scanned it, and finished it. In less than a week I came up with the new name, secured the .com, finished the logo and built the website. I'm on fire, baby!

    Q: You are rebranding! Are you concerned about losing your current LooLoo's Box customers and fans?

    A: Of course I am, but I am hoping that if I tell the world about the rebranding, have both cards available at my shows this summer and wait to change my name on Etsy until the end of the year, when Fantasticality isn't so new, I should be fine.

    Q: So, I guess the only question that remains is: sharp as a tack, or dumb as a doornail?

    A: Time will tell, my friend - but my money's on the tack.