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Meet Chien Chih Chen and Tammy Tan of Father’s Factory in City of Industry

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jimmy Chen and Tammy Tan.

Jimmy Chen and Tammy Tan, the father and mother of Father’s Factory, started their design journey at Art Center College of Design. After their two daughters were born, Jimmy often built toys with cardboard for them to spark their creativity and imagination. Over time, these cardboard toys had become an important part of the girls’ lives. They decorated the cardboard castle and imagined it populated by flying dragons, fighting knights, and dancing princesses.

Seeing the many magical moments that his work bought to his family, Jimmy was inspired to spread the joy with parents and kids around the world. He started to design toys that would bring families together and create memories that would last lifetimes. Before we went into production, he spent about 3 years to design and prototyped the first line of product at his own factory (his garage), hence the name “Father’s Factory” was born.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I think any start-up companies would face some obstacles on their journeys, same as us. To persuade family and friends to believe in us was hard. In the beginning, when we didn’t have actual products but only prototype from cardboards to show, people around couldn’t imagine what we were doing. Finance is also another struggle for us. To start, we had some family help. We have to split our budget between putting the money towards manufacturing or using them towards marketing, and it is a hard decision.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Father’s Factory – what should we know?
Father’s Factory specializes in designing and developing wooden toys. Our first collection is our SayCheese! wooden toy camera. Second collection is the WoodCam, wooden digital cameras. We have a variety of wooden toy cameras that covers a broad range of vintage and classic styles. We are also coming up with new styles for wooden toy cameras and they are all inspired by vintage cameras from different eras. I think we can say that our company has the most wooden toy camera styles that you’ll for sure find one that fits your child and your family. Also they double as great interior decor. Many of our customers told us that while the kids pretend to take photos around, our wooden toy cameras help them to connect with the world, and it’s more than just a toy camera. We are also the only company that makes wooden digital cameras. We worked with another company that provided us the motherboard, and we designed and developed the whole WoodCam line. The wooden digital cameras are all about delay gratification that allows you to focus and enjoy the whole photo taking experience rather than getting that perfect pictures. We think it’ll be a great lesson for kids to learn now a day and enjoy it with their families.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Being optimistic and hopeful will get you through all the ups and downs. We always tell ourselves to look ahead what’s in front of us.

Being flexible is crucial to a small startup company. We can execute an idea in a short period of time and test it on the market, and then edit and fix it. We don’t have a lot of resources like big companies, so I consider flexibility as one of our strengths. We use what we have to make the best out of it.

Being connected to our customers is also one of the good qualities we have. As a small company, we are able to connect with our customers more intimately. We often chatted with our customers about our families and what we have been going through. We are thankful that our customers support our small business. Every order we get, we literally do the silly dance behind the computer.

Pricing:

  • 35MM Original Wooden Toy Camera $55
  • 35MM Vintage Wooden Toy Camera $56
  • Super8 Wooden Toy Camera $52
  • Classic One Wooden Digital Camera $189~$219
  • Multi Lens Wooden Digital Camera $159 ~ $189

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