By Jill Armstrong | Posted: Thursday April 15, 2021
After a successful working bee on Saturday, the Young Enterprise Group successfully launched the "Woolly Wedge" at Mitre10 Store on Sunday. We were supported by Julie Cheyne (Young Enterprise S Under The Door Enterprises Update.
Under The Door Enterprises Update.
After a successful working bee on Saturday, the Young Enterprise Group successfully launched the "Woolly Wedge" at Mitre10 Store on Sunday. We were supported by Julie Cheyne (Young Enterprise Scheme Facilitator) and Cara Bradley (Business Growth Advisor) from The Otago Chamber of Commerce. We received excellent support from the Mitre10 customers, including referring us to future business opportunities, potential customers, ideas to improve, reaching our customers, and making our customer base broader.
To gather data to support our Validation Challenge, we decided to adapt to the everyday lifestyle of Covid-19 and wanted to make an easy and no-contact way, so we invited the customers to scan our premade QR code and answer our brief questionnaire, which helped us understand how we can continue to develop our business and product.
So, what is a Woolly Wedge?
The Woolly Wedge is an innovative, durable, sustainable, and handcrafted design constructed from 100% recycled materials. This a practical product, and the environmental impact is at a minimum which is essential, especially nowadays. We have placed significant importance on making sure that our customers and we are helping to make simple items a much less damaging product than alternatives such as plastic, wood, and rubber door stops which are usually more damaging and not as effective.
During Covid-19 Alert level 3, classroom doors were left ajar for hygiene purposes. The typical wooden wedge used on carpet in the classrooms was not sufficient to stop doors from closing as it kept slipping on doors that have spring which, as we know, can become dangerous when you don't expect it.
We saw a GAP in the market and came up with the concept of Under The Door Enterprises.
We needed to design a wedge made from materials that would not slip on all floor surfaces. So, we put our thinking caps on and came up with the Woolly Wedge. We looked at the materials of other wedge products currently in the market and found most were wooden, plastic, or rubber. A combination of fabric, timber, and rubber seemed perfect.
Using New Zealand wool was our first choice fabric because we knew that New Zealand wool is strong and very coarse; this would help create the friction between the carpet and wool being able to hold the door open and make sure that there was no need for people to hold the doors open and risk getting unwell. By thinking like this, we thought about how this could also be an innovative idea for everyday life and make it a product suitable for business owners and homeowners.
The Woolly Wedge's base is recycled timber, and we are grateful to Frank Broomhill (local builder and Kavanagh College grandfather), who supplied and cut the wooden part of our trial wedges. The YES group made the prototype Woolly Wedge.
Naturally, we are using offcuts of New Zealand-made woollen carpet. Carpet Court kindly donated some offcuts to test our product. The carpet is cut to size, with the pile facing downwards on the wedge. This prevents the wedge from slipping, and the door will remain open. It really works!
We decided on using the rubber from used bicycle tubes which would be easy to cut to size and glue to the Woollen Wedge.
The Woolly Wedge is handcrafted from:
We had also invited the school community to participate in our survey and give us some of their feedback on our product because we're always open to constructive criticism. Thank you in advance for your support with our innovative product.
Please feel free to complete our survey. Link to survey: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdG4TZ0tfesgoicCDa7-MowyX9IpnPDwW1v-_pDNQSyCDJHmw/viewform?usp=sf_link
Kind regards from Under The Door Enterprises.