Podcast: Taking On Craft Business Investors, with Alicia DiRago

30 Nov 2012


All images in this post from Alicia DiRago, used with permission.

This show offers up a very interesting story: Alicia DiRago launched Whimseybox about a year ago. It's a subscription service, where you pay to get a monthly box of craft supplies mailed to you. There's also an online community where you can get ideas and share what you've made from those supplies.

aliciadiragoI met Alicia when she was just starting this business, and I was impressed with her enthusiasm. I was even more impressed when I learned that she'd enrolled herself in Excelerate Labs, a business-startup program that not only mentors aspiring companies, but offers them an investment deal as well. So now, Alicia has capital to use in hiring a team, developing her website and doing lots of marketing - making growth happen fast.

What are the upsides and challenges of this kind of growth? Is this kind of approach better or worse than, say, opening an Etsy shop? And what happens when you choose to stop being a one-person company early on?

Alicia answers all these questions and more. I hope you enjoy her story!


Big-Time Linkage:

• Visit Whimseybox.com to see the boxes and online community.

• You can also connect with Whimseybox in many social-media spaces, including Pinterest,  Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

• Curious about the Excelerate Labs program Alicia applied for? Learn more here.

Alicia also graciously offered up all these links to resources that have helped her in growing her business. It's a treasure trove - thanks, Alicia!

TechStars is a similar program to Excelerate Labs that has locations across the country. They share a lot of great resources on their blog

Podcasts Alicia likes:
Craftypod (Aw, Yay!!)
This Week In Startups
This Week In Venture Capital
Stanford's ECorner

Blogs Alicia Likes:
Seth Godin
Mark Suster
Altucher Confidential 
Paul Graham 
Feld Thoughts  
Jess Lively

Books Alicia Likes:

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years (Says Alicia: "This isn't about business, but it helped me start mine. +++")
The Lean Startup
The War of Art



Thanks Diane. Such an honor to do a CraftyPod!

Great podcast - really enjoyed hearing about the middle (not the etsy ones and not Martha Stewart). Sounds so nice - to get a crafty parcel in the mail every month :)

Great information and perspective on a start up craft business. Thanks so much for sharing.

Wonderful interview Alicia! So excited for Whimseybox!

Thank you so much, Hanna! I'm working on it. :-)

Great show and interesting business idea that I really enjoyed hearing about. It sounds like fun getting such fun mail too! Thanks for this show!

And take care Diane, take care of you!