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A call for help from the silent one - Shannon

Date: 2008-10-09 14:55
Subject: A call for help from the silent one
Security: Public
I’ve been experiencing an overflow of creative energy recently, and I’m looking to channel it into selling some of the things that I make - online and perhaps at craft fairs or eventually in boutiques, etc. I want to create a company name so that I can get a website going, set up a new etsy store, etc – but I want to make sure that it can last. I’ve come up with a few options that I like, but I also have some concerns about each of them.

So I’m turning to my long abandoned livejournal in the hopes that I’m still on some people’s friend lists and you’ll see this and help me out. Please take a look at my options and let me know what you think of them.

(Oh, and for those of you who are geeky like me and are tempted to check website domain availability for the names, please hold off… I read earlier this year about registrars snagging domain names that people search for but don’t register immediately so that if the searcher wants to pick it up later they have to pay extra for the privilege, and now I’m paranoid.)

Dilettante Design Lab
Reasoning: I can tend towards doing a “little bit of everything” and it’s likely that if I sell things the store will reflect that. For example, right now I am knitting, and have jumped into screen printing (cards, and clothes, and I’m trying out using the screens to etch glass to make jewelry), plus I’m exploring more into the world of electronics, particularly doing things with LEDs and EL-wire and reading up on wearable computing and the like. It’s also likely that the contents will be more-or-less permanently shifting, evolving as I develop new interests or skills, get bored with things, find new ways to combine disciplines, etc.

I like “design lab” because it evokes play and exploration and science at the same time, and still keeps the name open enough to apply to anything I may create. The name as a whole has a nice ring to it, too.

Concerns: Do people know how to spell dilettante? This is a concern particularly when it comes to website/email issues. Also, dilettante can have a negative connotation… in my mind, it’s tied a bit to the idea of the “leisure class” and many of the dictionary definitions I’ve been finding include terms like amateur, superficial, or lacking in skill – ouch.

Polymath Design Lab
Reasoning: Much the same as the reasoning above (but without the negative connotations)… polymath means learned in many fields, and I know I have at least some of that going for me.

Concerns: Once again misspelling is a concern, although less so than with dilettante, I think. Will people think it is Polly Math? When you throw ‘math’ and ‘lab’ into the same name does it give off too much of a science vibe? Is it gauche to declare myself a polymath? (Or is it a good thing to be that bold?) Is the obscurity of the word going to pose a problem? I'm also not quite sure that this one flows as well, though I can't put my finger on any specific problem.

Spiral Design Lab
Reasoning: The design lab aspects remain, and Spiral gets thrown in because of my affinity for them and to tie into my standard username of spiralshannon. Also given that affinity there’s a good chance that a large portion of my products will have spirals in the designs, so there’s more of a connection to the actual goods without tying myself to a certain type of items. Logo would be a breeze, and spelling is easy this time.

Concerns: There is already a company named Spiral Design Studio (they do web design and corporate branding and are based in NY). The other names lend themselves to a writing up a fun little description of why I chose the name (and maybe even expanding vocabularies, bonus points!), but I think this one loses some of that, what with half of the description being “I have a thing for spirals.” Does it make it sound like I just design spirals - like some sort of human spirograph?

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User: skeets
Date: 2008-10-09 22:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Out of those three, I vote for Dilettante. :) Polymath Design Lab sounds more like a tech company than a craft designer, and Spiral is, IMO, less memorable.
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User: garneyloom
Date: 2008-10-09 23:53 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I agree that Polymath Deign Lab sounds like a Tech Company, but as someone who can't spell, I would never be able to get Dilettante right (I had to look at your spelling as I was typing it just now!). Spiral may sort of be taken, but to me, it's the only one that would work universally.
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User: talonstrike
Date: 2008-10-10 01:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I *can* spell and I'd have to look up dilettante to get it right. Nevertheless, I think it's the best one of the bunch.
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User: garneyloom
Date: 2008-10-09 23:54 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
PS: HI! Hope you're well. Can't wait to see the website when you do have it up and running.
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Meg Stone
User: squintt
Date: 2008-10-10 00:49 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I like Dilettante but I'm not entirely sure everyone is as well-read as we would like to think. I vote for Spiral.
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User: gmendel
Date: 2008-10-10 17:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I vote for spiral.

Cool, weird names are good, but if you really want the general public to visit your site, it needs to be easy to spell. Google was pretty darn clever - everybody can spell that, but anybody who types in a couple of extra o's gets routed to the same website.
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User: meredithcecile
Date: 2008-10-10 20:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I vote for Spiral. It's the best of the three choices, Polymath sounds more like a think-tank or a tech company-it doesn't make me think "cool crafty things", and Dilettante sounds cool and in the Northwest it is a good name, but here in the south it is a "nice" way of calling a woman a lazy unfocused person. It's considered kinda mean to refer to a person as a Dilettante, and it means something totally different if you refer to a man as one.
Why not keep the SpiralShannon, it can be SpiralShannon's design lab, or even just Shannon's Design Lab.
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October 2008