Samantha and I met during a business workshop. Apart from the speed networking session we didn’t get a chance to talk more at all, but I was quite interested in what she’s doing. She has a whale on her name card haha! When I reached out to her later, she happily accepted the interview request and then we met up. A woman with 2 kids, quit her job to run her own company, that doesn’t sound easy at all. Why did she pick this less-traveled path?
Samantha Dorri, 42
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Samantha grew up in London originally and moved to Singapore about 10 years ago. She was in a branding career for a long time, working for large brands across London, middle east and Singapore. When she was back in London and strolled around a shopping mall, she walked past the kids section and wasn’t impressed with the design (for kids products). “I can do this too!” That time she just started her own family, it wasn’t easy to take care of her kids while putting in long hours at work. In the branding industry, designers work incredibly long hours, sometimes as long as 16 hours a day and 7 days a week!
Apart from being a designer who created brands for big corporations, she worked as a freelancer before and also in a private firm. It was a firm surrounded by top talents, those days taught her a lot about entrepreneurship and humanity. Her family is very entrepreneurial too, all these experiences from family and work planted a seed in her mind.
Journey to Entrepreneurship
Samantha needed a different challenge and lifestyle so that she can balance between career and family. She is a great designer, while raising her own kids she thought to do something for other families too. How about a personalized gift for babies and kids with her talent in design? That’s how Sammyeve got started and she knew she can do it.
The idea was not just another personalized drawing / print. This would be a legacy to grow old together with kids, and accompany the family every day. It is a masterpiece that can last for a long time and preserve beautiful memories, hence all of her prints are on very high quality materials. Once she set her mind to it, she just kept working on it. She built everything from scratch, by herself. Web design, finance, packing, delivering, product design, marketing and other logistics. Sometimes it required her to work till midnight hours, she spent weeks just to finish one piece of design! “It’s about the sentiment values, not money,” that explains her huge effort for each illustration.
Samantha has absolute faith that this will work out, because she really believes in her product. She has customers across different regions who really appreciate her work, the challenge now is to scale up. Understands her own circumstances now, she is actively looking for talents that can help her out and also recently engaged mentors to help her business too. “We never know what’s going to happen. But sometimes when we look back we just say wow! How did that happen?”
- Finding balance every day is incredibly hard and need to be very disciplined too, especially nowadays a lot of distraction on social media
- Look at the big picture
- When you have kids, it’s a whole new level of challenge
Art and Design
- Sammyeve is a design studio specialising in beautiful personalised art and gifts for children
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