We're delighted she has joined us for an interview!
Q. Maria, please tell us about your goals for Qoileez!
A. My goal is to illuminate the beauty of taking chances and having fun with fashion to build positive self-esteem and stimulate creativity. I wanted to create fun fashion with a multi-purpose and give one a opportunity to have a new Qoileez design for everyday of the week.
Qoileez is creative and offers fashion forward styles for the young fashionisita!
Q. Maria, you're a mother, nurse, businesswoman, inventor, AND entrepreneur. How do you get it all done?
A. "Being a mother, nurse, businesswoman, inventor, entrepreneur you have to multi-task. And sleep? What's that?"
Q. Tell us where you get your inspiration?
A. Qoileez! came from being inspired by so many successful inventors/entrepreneurs' stories that I have read and heard about. And the drive to invent and create something overpowered me. I said to myself: "I want to create something. Something fun and fashionable. Something with a multi-purpose."
My motivation to become an inventor started in 2007 when on maternity leave and pregnant with my second child who is now 5 years old. I was rocking in my rocking chair watching the "Big Idea with Donny Deutsch" and I am not sure if it was the hormones and everything with being pregnant but when watching the show I was so empowered. I started to think different. I started to look at the world different. I felt that if they can do it, I can can do it too. I started to think of the shows popular phase "Why didn't I think of that?" Again I am not sure if that show was just so motivating or empowering or it was my pregnancy. It was probably both.
From that point I started thinking of ideas and reading and doing so much research about inventors, bringing ideas to market and everything in between.
There were several inventors that I had read about that really inspired me, but to name a few who I really admired and wanted to be like were Inventor Lisa Lloyd (inventor of The French Twister), Barbara Carey (inventor of Hairagami), Tomima Edmark (inventor of Topsy Tail), and Kelley Fitzpatrick (inventor of Bumpits).
Now you probably see a pattern here. Women, Mothers, Fashion, Fun, Hair, Beauty Product. So no wonder I created Qoileez! Qoileez! is fun, fashion used in your cutest hair styles, pencils, knitting needles and so much more!
Q. Once you knew you wanted your own business, how did Qoileez! actually get started?
A. Well, one day I was at the store and I was thinking of the inventor who invented the Topsy Tail and I said to myself "I am going to look in the knitting, crochet area and see if there is something like the Topsy Tail that I can use in my hair." So I did and found these tiny stretchy plastic things that were used to hold knitting needles together and I said to myself those would look cute in my hair. So I bought them. They were $5.99 for a pack of 5 solid colors (purple, green and white). I experimented with them. They held my hair together and helped me create some cute hair styles but didn't have that, "Wow factor"!
So I thought to myself what can I do to make them look better? They became my prototypes. Now I know what prototypes are because I have done a lot of research and have been educating myself on inventing and bringing products to market. I researched the material manufactures, colors, design and so much more. I thought to myself "these" coils would look so cute if they were different designs and colors and would make such a cute fashion accessory for my hair. My kids and I started to come up with all these ideas of how these coiled plastic objects could be used for. So I bought some nail art stickers cut them and put them over the coils and moulded them to fit the coils. They looked so cute!
Nail art has limitless designs so I made all theses cute"prototypes". After creating my prototypes I took them to my sons' school on the days I volunteered and started asking the kids all ages (from 5-14 yrs) what they thought of my prototype. I had so much feedback and after weeks of asking about 60 + kids and parents what they thought of this idea ... every single girl and parent (usually the mom or grandma) would say "Those are so cute! I want some!" Even my two boys were excited. And we came up with the idea of decorating our pencils, knitting needles and so much more! Oh, did I mention I have two boys, ages 5 and 9 years old? No girls! I invented this for girls based on what I like and what feedback I got from all the kids at my sons' school.
After my product evaluation and testing. I set out to do a lot of research on what material would work, how it would incorporate my different designs. Could this product even be manufactured and with all the different designs I want? So after months and months of research and contacting different manufacturers and a lot of barriers. I finally found a manufacturer that was a right fit.
Q. What's your favorite thing about Qoileez!?
A. The best thing about creating Qoileez! is my children go around singing the jingle for Qoileez! And help with coming up with creative ways to use Qoileez! and fun colors and designs. My children and all their friends say, "I can't wait to see them in the stores." My kids always say, "That would be so cool mom."
Yes, seeing them in stores would be "cool," but not as cool as sharing this amazing adventure with my kids.
Being a role model to my kids and showing them, "You can do anything if you work hard, smart and follow through with it." I tell them, "You won't know, if you don't try!" And if you don't succeed, try, try and try again!!!
Qoileez! is a successful product in so many ways. I look forward to online and retail sales worldwide. It has all the components of a dream product.
Qoileez! adds the cutest fashion to your favourite hairstyle, pencils, knitting needles and more!
disclaimer: i did recieve a sample product to try out. i wasnt compensated in any other way for this review. these are all my own opinions.