Tallahassee Couple's Creation Gets National Showcase on QVC
That presenter/co-creator is as hometown as you can get.
"I'm Adrianne Kautz. And I am a Quincy native, Tallahassee local and co-founder of One Fresh Pillow."
Although Kautz said the concept for the pillow originated from her husband Aaron's massage therapy practice.
"It was the summer of 2016 so almost 4 years ago. And he had only been in practice for about a year at that point I think. So pretty early-on in his massage career he realized that neck pain was a problem and that pillows were going to be part of the solution for his clients."
The problem, she explained, is that the pillow to provide that solution did not yet exist.
"Either they were too hard or too soft and we joked one day, 'Okay, if we could put this pillow with this pillow, we'd have the perfect combination!' And that's what we did. I joke that we 'Frankensteined' two pillows together right here in our living room."
Still, as unsophisticated as that was, the 'Frankensteined' pillow worked. Next, the Koutz's needed to get the pillow into production and they really wanted it to be a "Made in the USA" affair. So they started calling every domestic producer they could find.
"Half of them wouldn't even call us back and the other half wanted insane minimum orders and weren't flexible at all. But we were so fortunate that Aaron's uncle is originally from China and he has contacts over there that he still goes to see on a regular basis and he finally said, 'Let me at least have them try.'"
The resulting mass-produced pillow fit the bill. So Adrianne and Aaron started marketing it online. Until some sixteen months ago when they got a call from a product scout for the nation's number one televised home shopping channel.
"So they saw us on Instagram, they liked our story. We sent them some pillow samples, which they loved. And they said, 'We're going to get you on QVC.' And they did!"
"We've got a first look for you and this is the first time that we have this here on QVC."
This past Thursday, Adrianne made her debut on QVC, although it was by phone and not Skype as originally planned.
"We had done the rundown multiple times so I was thankful we had professionals walking us through that every step of the way. Even though some technical difficulties at their end meant the Skype thing didn't work out. But I still felt really confident going on-air and knowing that I'd do an okay job."
Kautz said final sales numbers from the 7-minute long segment aren't out yet. But she and her husband hope, as the old song goes, "This could be the start of something big."
"We would love to get to the point where we could financially have our manufacturing moved to the States. That would be amazing! And I think a lot of people don't realize that Aaron and I still have day jobs so I think the next biggest mountain would be able to make enough money off of this little pillow business so that we can have one job each instead of two each. That would be great!"
Those wishing to check out Adrianne and Aaron's creation can go to their "One Fresh Pillow" website. And of course it's now on the QVC site as well.