Taking Calculated Risks


Taking calculated risks is part of life. Often as you move toward a looming decision, the classic real life drama (not to mention psychologically thrilling) Fight-or-Flight can occur.

This was certainly the case launching Smalltown Flats.

In general, I think I am a positive person and an upbeat thinker. However, I usually run through every worst-case-scenario in my head to prepare myself mentally.

Inasmuch as I loved my own idea, I am 99.5% practical and extremely risk-averse. This new venture would prove to be a total mental stretch for me – in runner’s terms, a sprint AND a marathon.

When I came up with the idea of Smalltown Flats, I tried to make a list of problems and solutions that this new product would address:

Problem #1: Doll furniture is bulky & it’s always on the floor & NEVER put away!

Solution: Make it collapsible & storage-friendly.


Problem #2: BORING furniture that “just sits there.”

Solution: Design it as puzzle and a craft – easy to put together & fun to decorate.


Problem #3: Ridiculously expensive – costs more than your own furniture!

Solution: Make no piece more than $30.

Problem #4: I personally dislike plastic toys.

Solution: Make it earth-friendly with mostly (70%) recycled materials.

Problem #5: Sometimes it is difficult for parents to engage in pretend play.

Solution: Make it fun for parents & children to decorate the furniture together.


Problem #6: Not everyone has the time or desire to get creative.

Solution: Include cute stickers for quick decorating.

When I felt like I had solved each one of these problems that bugged me as a parent, I made the decision to move forward and produce Smalltown Flats. I consider Smalltown Flats to be my baby in a growing family of products. I hope you love them as much as I do!

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