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Start Your Business Success Stories

Small Business Snapshot: Seedling

Small Business Snapshot: Seedling Credit: Seedling

Our Small Business Snapshot series features photos that represent, in just one image, what the small businesses we feature are all about. Phoebe Hayman, co-founder and CEO of Seedling, a business founded in 2007 that creates and sells unique activity kits, toys and party supplies for kids, explains how this image represents her business.

Hayman explains...

At Seedling, we are passionate about the importance of celebrating the freedom of play. We believe the magic is in the making. It's why we get excited about exploring the process rather than following a paint-by-numbers kit. This photo shows a girl playing with the mask she created using our Design Your Own Superhero Mask, which is one of our bestselling kits. With her customized superhero mask on, she is imagining a world where she is the hero, ready to take on the world — or maybe just first grade.

I studied Fine Arts in Auckland, and it helped me understand what an important role creative thought plays in our lives. Once I became a parent, I realized how hard it was to find quality, creative experiences for children. Children are naturally excited and curious about exploring what they can do with their own two hands, so it made me start thinking that there must be a way to create a simpler and more positive experience. After settling on the idea that I wanted something that fully supported that spirit, I created Seedling.

As today’s digitally savvy kids seamlessly shift between real world and digital play, we had to determine a way to fit into this newly created space. Since we value imaginative play in all forms, we are constantly working to create new ways to combine cutting-edge technology with our imaginative physical product line, thus creating an entirely new category of play. For example, we just announced a virtual reality offering that consists of a physical maze, an app that converts the maze into VR, and a customizable headset.

An interesting thing about our business is that, although our head office is now here in LA, we started our business in New Zealand, so New Zealand culture plays a role in the ethos of our company. New Zealand is an island where creativity is cultivated and valued. Its focus is on getting active outside and appreciating the world. We are proud of being a company that has a varied cultural heritage and we love having a truly global team. There are never any complaints when someone from our LA team has to go to the New Zealand office!