Hi! Welcome to Zoozii's. Who are we? We are a family run business that came out of the industry changing idea of a girl, and the precision machining skills of her Dad and the amazing support system of her husband and mother!
The full story can be read below! It's a page turner, I promise.
Carl is my dad, and he's married to my mom, Kathy, and has been for almost 50 years. They are the cutest couple, and love their grandchildren, enjoy caring for the turkeys and chickens, while gardening and cutting wood. Dad has wanted to be a machinist since his high school years, when he listed that as his future profession. In typical fashion, dad plans and then executes. He has been a machinist and then a machining engineer for 35+ years until he retired in 2014.
I'm Amy, the girl in the story. I am married to an amazing, supportive man, Christopher and we share our home and lives with 2 fabulous daughters, Eowyn and Istra. We have a small farm in a rural area of NH, where we enjoy our chickens, ducks and Cow, Nellie. My life path is not as linear as dad's. I had no idea what I wanted to be in high school and do not remember what I may have even given them for the answer in the year book. I went to college, 5 years after graduating high school. My degree is in psychology and art. I found glass in 2000, fell in love and have had a home studio in my various apartments and homes ever since.
Torching during a demo with the Florida Glass Dragons
My glass has followed my passions. I started making pieces for jewelry, then moved into glass buttons since I was an avid knitter, and now I make essential oil diffusers! I have been a health coach, in addition to a tool supplier, for the past 3 years. I love helping people feel the best they can, get the most out of life and be able to enjoy their passions longer and more fully!
The full story:
It was the pre-Christmas season of 2003 and I, Amy, was showing my dad a cool new lampworking tool that made lentil shapes. Dad was intrigued because he loves my glass work AND loves tooling, so this started a great brainstorming session! I was focused on the fact the tool looked clunky and that the lentil shape was so typical, could we go square? Dad quickly through out the idea for pins to streamline the clunkiness and add precision in the use of the tool. Yes! Pins. Ooh, we need to taper them so they don't become bound up. Yes, that makes the press easier to line up the pins and the holes! Square shape? Like a tile? No! Like a throw pillow. Ooooh! Yes! I love this!
Dad set off to plot and plan in the magic of his Autocad program. I set about dreaming of ways to decorate the new shape in my sketch book.
Dad surprised me with a simple Lentil press using our precision alignment design! Shortly after, which may have been preceded by enthusiastic nagging from me, dad brought home the physical manifestation of this amazing idea! I set about making pillow beads, immediately. I loved them. The tool was easy to use, so precise and the shape was not available in handmade lampwork beads!
So how did this idea go from being a gift from a dad to his daughter? I showed some beads I made with this tool in an online forum gallery. I had 30+ folks emailing asking me how I made the shape, and could they get the tool? Dad gave me the drawing to bring to local machinists, who looked at me like I was crazy, until I found Walter! He was willing to take a chance on this artsy girl with a drawing, a sample tool, and lots of excitement.
The lampwork community supported this project, with great enthusiasm. We sold our first batch of 50 tools in less than 2 hours and the orders poured in. We were all stunned. Production continued, loyal customers wanted more sizes, Kalera Stratton wanted a shape she had been making by hand turned into a press, Val Cox wanted to know if we could go outside of the press to create something that was in her brain, too! Collaboration, and high quality production changed the face of Lampworking in the United States. Jewelry designers loved the new options and it created a marketplace for lampwork that hand not been available before! The low profile shapes and consistent sizes made it very easy to incorporate into jewelry designs!
We started out, just a girl and her supportive dad, looking to think outside the box, and we stumbled into a business that would still be going strong well over a decade later! Thank you all for your amazing support over the years. In that time, My husband and I have welcomed 2 little girls into our family, our family has lost loved ones, seen the ups and downs of life, but we are all thankful for the opportunity to still be providing you with the highest quality lampwork tools!