I love summer time for the slower pace that it brings. I’ve learned that design business slows during the summer and that allows more time to explore different areas. I wrote a post last week on having different forms of revenue and really, this time of the year is why I do that. Aside from that, the design business is experiencing a natural shift and I’m excited to have the time to dedicate to actually making these changes happen. I’ve been refining my client process and I think it’s going to make a huge difference for both myself and the client.
Something else that’s been happening this summer is a fun brand partnership. I’ve been working with Elkay over the past couple of months to promote a design contest they’re hosting and also traveled to their headquarters in Chicago back in July to see their facility and meet the people behind the business. It was a quick trip (3 days) but it was so jammed packed and I left feeling grateful and inspired.
Partnering with a brand is a complex thing, I’ve learned. I want it to feel natural and there’s always the fear that it wont. Elkay is a sink manufacturer, so yes, it’s directly in line with what I do, but there has to be something more there to make an authentic partnership. There has to be a real connection. At least that’s what I think makes a natural partnership… Would love to hear other thoughts.
First of all, Elkay’s hospitality on the trip was incredible. There were a handful of bloggers on the trip, and it was unanimous that we were made to feel special. Very special. Naturally, when someone shows you they are invested in you, you in turn want to show the same. The first full day of the trip was spent at their manufacturing plant. The group got a tour that showed how the sinks are made and w o w. So much goes into that. It was honestly just really humbling to see so many people working so tirelessly on ONE sink. I had never seen anything like it.
(The group. And I do apologize for the quality of photos. I meant to take my camera but forgot.)
Right before the tour of the factory, we met some of the employees and learned that most of them were multi generation deep employees. I was so impressed by that. I think that in itself shows that the employees enjoy working for Elkay. They feel valued just like us group of bloggers were made to feel.
That night we visited a local showroom that houses some of Elkay’s designer sink products. It felt like we went full circle from seeing the production of the sinks to seeing them sparkle in a showroom.
And then the second day of the trip, Elkay treated us to the Crosstown Classic (Cubs vs. Whitesox baseball game that is apparently a huge rival) and that was lots of fun. I’m honestly terrible at documenting things, (this photo below was pulled from another blogger’s instagram) BUT my mom and sister came along on the trip and they were able to go to the baseball game!
I left wanting to share about this company that I learned first hand is truly a great company. Elkay is currently hosting a monthly design contest where they give away $2,000 to a monthly winner. Home designers can go here to enter but seriously, all that you have to do to enter is post a photo of your kitchen design on Instagram, tag them and use the hashtag #ElkayEveryday. If you don’t have instagram, you can enter by following that link above to their website and upload your kitchen photo there. OH. And they are also giving away a one time prize of $25,000 to one of the lucky monthly winners. I mean…..you’d be losing money not to enter.