How Crockd brought art therapy to employees working from home

inke packaging — March 9, 2021

Crockd is the home pottery kit turning your Saturday night wines into ‘DIY Crafternoons’. The core idea of Crockd is to teach “the art of pottery without the pressure of a formal workshop,” but more so than that, Crockd kits aim to bring people together over meaningful conversations and busy hands.

The concept is simple: a box with enough clay for 2, 3 or 4 people, an instruction leaflet and some carving tools. All users need to bring along are their friends, their imagination and their positive vibes.

Once the fun has been had, users can choose to air-dry their creations or take them to a kiln to be fired and fit for endless uses. Crockd is all about supporting local Aussie manufacturers and sourcing local materials, with each kit containing high-quality clay from the Central Coast.

The brand’s founders Rosa-Clare Willis and Andrew Ford, first had the idea for Crockd way back in December 2019, “feeling burnt out and looking for a way to decompress without turning to alcohol or Netflix.” Seeing a gap in the market for easy-to-use, at-home ceramics, they began to conceptualise the at-home pottery kit they’d been seeking themselves.

“We’d wanted to try pottery for a while but couldn’t figure out how to get our hands on clay without having to sign up to a workshop... Building the brand has been a gratifying and natural process.”

Talk about timing, the platform launched to market just before COVID stay at home restrictions affected us all, which not only saw their sales sky-rocket but, more importantly, meant they were able to spread their message quicker and further in what was such a crucial and relevant time.

The brand’s founders said, “We thought it might take us a month to prove that there was a DIY pottery market, but we ended up selling out of our first release within a matter of hours!”

The inke platform played a timely role in assisting Crockd along the way, allowing them to order sample boxes and trial which size worked best for their product, trial different designs and access instant quote options, through to making their first order and scaling up their volume as the orders came through thick and fast.

“The brand is really built off the back of our own personalities. We love not to take ourselves too seriously, and so we knew it was important to build a brand that could laugh at itself.

“Once we had the name, everything evolved from there. It only took us two months to design the brand, build the website, curate the product and launch nationally!”

Crockd saw rapid growth in the space of just three months, from two people in a home office to now shipping hundreds of orders out of a warehouse, with demand for kits increasing exponentially week on week. This is no doubt down to the brand’s positive messaging, intriguing visuals and the interpretive nature of pottery.

Anyone can do it and make it completely their own! At the core of the business is mental health, with Crockd’s founders saying they hope their kits can inspire open conversations between friends and family, bringing them together without the need for alcohol. “We want people the get Crockd up, not F**ked up in their downtime.”

Also included in every Crockd kit is many ‘Clay Breakers’ – a set of questions to ask your mates to find out how they’re going and what makes them tick. They’re designed to “spark interesting, uncomfortable and inspiring conversations while you play with mud,” making the experience truly unique and special.

“Our kits were intended to pull people away from tech and to get out of their heads and into their hands,” and with people staying home and away from their loved ones more and more, having something tangible to connect them through has never been more important.

The founders of Crockd both come from a tech start-up background, so they understand the importance of customer experience.

“Good product design is ingrained in our thinking. The website is the first impression, but we believe the most important impression is when our product lands in the hands of our user.”

Because so much of the product’s final design is left up to the user’s imagination, Crockd’s custom packaging plays a crucial role in sending the brand’s message. Crockd is about feeling GOOD.

Branded packaging helps us to set the tone for our customer. Our illustrations are clumsy, funny and designed to make fun of everyday things in life. It makes them laugh when they first see it, and that’s more important to us than anything. Our packaging is also what makes us unique. Having the ability to order packaging from inke using any design we want at any given time is a huge tick.

“When people feel like they’re holding something special, they’re more likely to share the unboxing experience with their friends on social media.”

The brand’s social media presence has certainly been felt, having gained over 15,000 followers in just three months since launching. “Almost everyone always shares their unboxing experience on Instagram. It’s been the most amazing and validating experience.”

Crockd’s success is proof that Australian consumers seek products that are experiential, creative, personal and encourage social interaction and togetherness. As well as showing the integral role custom packaging can have in boosting your customer engagement.

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