So a few weeks ago I had a blog reader email me and thank me for the tips she had learned and the improvements she was making in her diet. She generously insisted on sending me a package from her cooking ware company, named Silvermark, filled with kitchen scissors, an excellent salad chopper, and more!! (the perfect pair of sheers for my taco salad recipe!) I’ve been using what she sent me these last few weeks, and I can say that they are all fantastic products. A few basic but very GOOD cooking products makes a huge difference as we get more into this lifestyle, which involves making our own unprocessed foods and trying out recipes.
Wendy is an incredibly sweet woman, and even wished me Happy Thanksgiving. You can always tell when someone is giving something from the heart- not because they expect something. That is who Wendy is! I am always interested in hearing about female entrepreneurs, especially in a field tied to nutrition, so I interviewed Wendy.
Kimberly: Tell us about your company!
Wendy: Silvermark makes kitchen gadgets and housewares which are all designed for fresh and healthy food prep. Our bestselling item is the Toss & Chop Salad Chopper. We sell to hundreds of retailers across the country including: Bed, Bath and Beyond, Williams Sonoma, Sur la Table and many more. Our products are also sold on Amazon and our own website – www.silvermk.com.
Kimberly: What inspired you to start Silvermark?
Wendy: I didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur! I was a stay-at-home mother of two little girls and in my quest to eat healthier I was trying to make chopped salad out of a salad I had ordered in. As I was holding my child and stabbing at my salad with a pair of scissors, the idea that would become the Toss&Chop popped into my head. A few years and about 10 prototypes later, I had a working sample. I took the product to QVC and it launched in January of 2002 at the International Housewares Show where QVC was broadcasting live. We sold 13,000 units in 6 minutes and broke a record for an item under $20.00! From then on there was no looking back; we went on to sell 250,000 Toss & Chops in our first year on QVC alone and invested all of the proceeds into launching Silvermark. We know have over 80 items on our line and sell to stores all over the world.
Kimberly: Wow! Holy moly! That is just incredible. What lessons do you have for other aspiring female entrepreneurs?
Wendy: I could write a book on the lessons that I have learned, and am still learning. One thing I have learned is that there are a lot of unexpected challenges and there is more to being successful than just having a best-selling product. It is easy to launch and get the attention of the press because they are always looking for new things; it is much harder to keep on selling your products day in and day out for years. A company can be brought down by issues other than the products not selling, such as: shipping and manufacturing problems; disorganization in invoicing and collections; not paying attention to customer service issues and other fun things like that. My passion is writing recipes and inventing, but I spend many days mired in company related issues – you have to have the stomach for it!
Kimberly: Why is your cooking ware better/unique?
Wendy: My items are unique in a few ways. First, and most important, is we have items with both utility patents and design patents, so we are the only ones who can manufacture them. Second, we always try to build products with amazing quality and sell them at reasonable prices. Lastly, but not least, all of our products are designed for fresh and healthy food preparation and they are designed by someone who actually cooks – me! You would be surprised to learn how many houseware designers there are who don’t actually cook!
Thanks Wendy! And remember that cooking ware is an AWESOME holiday present- even if you buy it as a present to yourself and for you own family. ☺ I LOVE getting new kitchen ware!!! Silvermark’s site again is: www.silvermk.com. Check it out! You’ll know you are getting great quality- plus supporting a lovely woman and a family owned and operated business. 🙂
Hope you are having a beautiful day. ☺Oh by the way, I was thinking of starting a forum on my blog so we could all talk. But I don’t want it to just be me doing the talking!! 🙂 Would you guys actually participate if I do that? What do you think??
I will write more soon.
I would participate in discussions in a forum—I come here everyday to see what you have to say, and I’m always searching for more people who have this type of food mindset!
I most definitely would! It would be a great way to form a community of curious, sharing and supportive healthy eaters each with unique knowledge to contribute.
I come here every day, sometimes multiple times a day as it is, so, yeah, I’d love a forum on here! I think it’d be a really great idea.
The forum is a wonderful idea!
Once again, I LOVE your dress!
Thanks Girl! I love dressing up sometimes. 🙂
Kimberly i would LOVE if you added a forum!!! I would most definitely participate & it would be amazing to be able to communicate w/ other like-minded people & give & share tips. I visit your site AT LEAST once a day & have learned sooo sooo sooo much from you…I’m never looking back! I would absolutely contribute to a forum & i hope you decide to add one soon!!! Thank you so much for all that you are doing for us, I REALLY appreciate it! 🙂
Agree with the others- a forum would be way cool.
I think it’s a great idea! If it doesn’t work out..it can always be removed from the site..no harm done! But, I think people would enjoy this.
Great, thanks so much to all of you for getting back to me. I’m glad to see that there is some interest. I am going to figure it out soon!
Kimberly, I would love it too!
Okay great, the more the merrier. 🙂
I love the article on Wendy and her Salad Chopper. What an inspirational story!
A forum would be wonderful – especially for us newbies.
Sorry for the late response…but a forum would be great!!
PS You look awesome in your dress!! 😀
Thanks Jenny! Well I am looking into setting it up. I thought it could be within the blog- but I just learned that it is a bigger deal and a separate page??
Still working on it. 🙂
PS- Glad you like my dress!! Thanks!
I will love to participate in the forum but it will be best form me at night or weekends. Today it is an exceptional day because work is kind of slow but I usually do not have time to check your blog at all during the day. I am trying to get into the habit to setting up a time for lunch of at least to take 10 minutes straight for me during my work hours, so I am checking your blog to monitor that actually I am taking some time off from work and think in other things =-)
Hi! It’s been quite awhile since I’ve checked your blog but YES to the forum. I think it’s a great way for everyone to stay connected, swap resources and possibly meet up in person, depending where everyone is. I belong to a few different forums and I am always inspired by others and always get the best ideas!
Enjoy your holidays!!
I would love to set up a forum and will one day…but I just learned it is a bigger deal to set up on my website than I thought. It will come though!!
Thank you for the helpful tips! I would never have gotten this on my own! Is it alright to reference part of this on my website basically include a backlink to this webpage?
Sure! We welcome references with linkbacks to the blog where the info came from. xx