Kickstarter update: Two Weeks and Counting

posted in: News, Updates | 0

Greetings, everyone! I have an update on the status of our Kickstarter rewards. We know you are eagerly anticipating getting your Frank N. Foode™ and Lanakila Ā. Papaya plushies, and a few of you have been checking in wondering what the status is. We had a couple more steps to finish, and a production delay which I will tell you about. But the good news is the plushies are being produced right now, and I have been told that there is less than two weeks left until they are finished!

Frankmas tree
A traditional Frankmas Tree

A lot goes into turning our mascots into cuddly plushies that we can send to everyone. After several rounds of design, feedback, and redesign, we got the final designs for both plushies finalized and the order was placed in September. Custom fabric, custom parts, and a new look for Frank that is going to last through the ages. We went through a round of designing and approving the placement of the tags on each plushie. Then, as it happened, the factory that was going to produce the custom fabric we designed – had closed. This meant that the factory producing the plushies had to find a new source, and check with us to make sure that the look of the fabric matched what we wanted. The first fabric test looked too drab to me, and I sent it back, emphatic that the colors should be vivid. You have to understand that each time we go through a round of communication and redesign or reprint – it adds a week to the process.

Still, it has been interesting going through this learning process. It gives me respect to the people who do this for a living, and seeing something I created and envisioned years ago become a reality is really cool. It won’t be long until hundreds of physical manifestations of that initial idea will be sitting my living room. I have been informed that the factory expects to finish all 1,250 Frank and Lanakila plushies on November 26. It will be my task to get them out the door as soon as they come in. The first ~250 of them will be packed into waiting boxes and shipped off to get to all of you as fast as they can! I’m dreaming of a Merry Frankmas for all!

If you’ve been itching to get one but haven’t yet, between now and when they arrive in Madison is a good time to place an order (the sooner the better). That way I can get the boxes all ready and waiting. The largest variable remaining is the time it will take to ship them to the U.S., so at this time I cannot guarantee that they will arrive at domestic addresses before the holidays. But it is looking to be a close shave, and exciting either way!

Lanakila Embroidered
Lanakila embroidered

With the impending arrival of the Frank N. Foode™ army, work on some of the more special and unique Kickstarter gifts has been proceeding. Thanks to a donation of some really creative character work from my sister, we now have special customizable embroidery designs of both Frank and Lanakila. Those of you who got the special canvas tote bags as part of your gifts, you’re in for something really special!

On the left is a sneak peek of Lanakila in embroidery form. The gold and silver franks are being assembled, T-shirts prepared for printing, and the books are in-hand and ready to go. Lots of gifts will be coming your way!Thank you for your support, and for your patience. There’s going to be a lot of people unboxing their Plant Plushies for the first time this holiday season, and if you are half as excited as I was, I guarantee it will be worth it!

Follow Karl Haro von Mogel:

Karl earned his Ph.D. in Plant Breeding and Plant Genetics at UW-Madison, with a minor in Life Science Communication. His dissertation was on both the genetics of sweet corn and plant genetics outreach. He recently moved back to his home state of California. His favorite produce might just be squash.