Reflections on 2010 and looking forward to 2011..
Reflecting on our past year, 2010 and looking forward to 2011….
As the year 2010 winds to a close, there is so much to be grateful for, so much growth over the past year, and so much to come.
Reflections on the past year begin with nearly tripling our sales! Thanks to all our customers, our 100% positive feedback, our facebook family, and all the people on our manufacturing team for making this happen!
We started our year off by moving our manufacturing facility to our current location at 264-1 Marlowe Drive. It was a big move, and the space is serving us well. We have a demonstration yurt, a large sign that you can see from the road, and a large woodshop and sewing studio. People stop in and visit frequently, and our central location is convenient and closer to our home. We’re happy to say that with all the sales this year, we are ready to grow and expand our sewing studio into another part of the building. We are replacing our demonstration yurt with a new one that reflects our design changes (read on!)
In 2010 we did lots of work on our yurt design. We were determined to improve our product, and also our manufacturing efficiency. The result:
In the spring of 2010 we launched our new cover pattern for the roof. The new pattern has a better fit, a stream-lined sewing process, is easy to customize, and is visually more pleasing to the eye. Our window design is new and improved with removable velcro windows, making it easier to repair or replace the screen.
We are proud to offer natural fabric alternatives while also providing our customers with the safest fabrics available. We still offer our standard natural cotton canvas and Polaris, a poly-cotton blend with a vinyl coating, but we have expanded our fabric offerings to include a fabric upgrade that is a heavier poly-cotton blend with an acrylic coating. The ability to remove the screen also offers an unobstructed view through the clear windows.
This fabric is longer lasting and more resistant to tears and weathering, making it ideal for roofs. In 2010, we began using thermal micro-spheres suspended in paint, and began offering thermal coatings to the yurt covers. The coating offers the customer almost unlimited color choices, seals the seams, and adds life to the fabric. So far we have been very pleased with the results and our customers enjoy the increased insulating value as well as the attractive look of a painted canvas.
In January of 2010, we are launching our new ring design that we believe will add strength and simplify the manufacturing process. However, the real benefit is that it makes the ring and rafters easier to make for our Do It Yourself customers. Another benefit is our yurts will have larger rings, and thus larger skylights. The 12’, 15’, and 18’ yurts’ ring diameter will be 36” and our 20’, 24’, and 30’ yurts have a 48″ ring diameter. Now our yurts have more natural light from the dome and the opening mechanism is easier to install and more wind resistant.
With the new ring design, comes a design change in the rafters. We will now be using 2×4 and 2×6 rafters instead of 5/4 boards, thus no longer needing to special order boards. In addition, our dome-opening kit is simplified, so that our customers can choose to buy the dome directly from a dome manufacturing company and can install the dome kit themselves.
Our new designs have made our yurt stronger, more visually pleasing, and will help Do It Yourself builders . We are excited about receiving results from our engineers about our design and the overall improvements we made.
Of course, we can’t forget launching the Yurtle™. Our solution to a pop-up yurt, the Yurtle™ modernizes the idea of a nomadic lifestyle and helps people find a solution to zoning laws and regulations. We have been purchasing inexpensive trailers and beginning to modify them to accommodate yurts and yurt decks in anticipation of Yurtle sales this winter and spring. We are excited for our customers who are enjoying their Yurtles™, and look forward to building more!
We are continually asked about our workshops and when the Do It Yourself manual will be completed. The workshops and manual have been on hold while we worked out the details of the new designs. We will be hosting our first workshop of the year on Febuary 5th and 6th. We will be teaching all the new design improvements in these classes. We will be working to add all of the details of these improvements to the manual and have it available once it has been formatted and edited.With such a busy year behind us, we know we have a lot work ahead, and some important goals to realize. Our New Year’s Resolutions:
We want to finalize our Complete Yurt Building Manual and add our design changes. We are taking lots of pictures, have hired a designer to make it easier to read, to improve our diagrams, and to format it into a easy to use manual. Of course, our manual will include our design changes, and will provide information both on how to build your yurt frame and sew the cover.
We will continue our goal of receiving 100% positive feedback from our customers.
We hope to expand our sales to state parks and campgrounds.
We would like to offer more photos and testimonials, so as our gift holiday gift, we ask you to send us your pictures and testimonials!!!
And just for fun…
As we make more yurts we have more scrap wood and fabric. We’ve been trying to think of positive uses for our scrap and coming soon is a surprise new product we will be launching in January. It complements the yurt, and hint: “don’t lose sleep over it” because we’ll let you know about it soon!!!
Make sure to check our blog and facebook page for pictures and more information over the next few weeks! Much warmth and well wishes for a wonderful 2011!