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I created Tidy Books in 2004 when I designed my first children’s bookcase for my own daughter. It was clear to me that kids do judge a book by its cover, not the spine! Since then, my bookcase has been getting kids reading.
Let me tell you how it happened: In 2004 I was looking for a bookcase for my daughter Adele, but all the kids’ bookcases in the shops were really bookcases for adults, dressed up for children. They show the spines of books, and only really work if the books are the same size – like most books for adults. The bookcase I wanted didn’t exist, so I got my tools out and made the first Tidy Books bookcase in my violin maker’s workshop. When other parents saw the bookcase they wanted one too.
I set up business from my violin workshop with just about $800 and a small ad in a parenting magazine. I had no business background, but my background as a violin maker has given me a certain way of doing things and another perspective, certain foundations and values: measure twice cut once, creativity, commitment and end products in mind. The response was phenomenal. I think I’ve struck a chord with parents and kids!