For clarification, it’s pronounced zWHY-bees. A name change was suggested by more than one person, but if I did that, it wouldn’t be Zwybie’s.
I was once a child in physical form. I have to specify because I’m still a child in all other manners. As my late grandfather would say, I was a “good young lad”. And as any good young lad trying to cut his teeth would do, I was always gnawing on something. Most of the time, that something was teething toast of the Zwieback variety. I have no memory of it besides some blurry photos, but apparently the stuff just got everywhere. I’ve come to learn it’s cute when a baby gets his food all over him, but frowned upon when an adult does it. Talk about double standards. I digress.. wait, that’s pretty much it. My aunt started calling me Zwybie because of the ever present cracker mush all over me.. and still does to this day.
Not only does the name hold sentimental value for me – somewhat of a representation of the affection my family has for each other – but it works out nicely that with anyone’s first business, they are cutting their teeth, so to speak, as an entrepreneur. Now who has some of that toast?
I’ve always looked up to people who are passionate about their work. Over the course of my career as an engineer I’ve been lucky enough to have many opportunities to work on things I’ve found passion in. Some of the other times I felt like I had to trudge through the work to get through a day, a week, a month. I do realize that sounds ungrateful but that’s not what I’m going for. I think almost everyone has certain parts of their job they’d feel better off without. And that it’s important that those parts are limited. If not, where are you supposed to find happiness when most of your time is spent doing these things you don’t like? Again, I have been lucky enough that I’ve been able to enjoy most of the work I’ve done.
Blessing in Disguise
Looking back at my career so far, I’ve noticed something funny that happens during the times I’m working on things I’m not passionate about. Even though I’d still put in effort at work, at the end of the day I’d be left with this feeling that my mind still had this pent up energy to expel on something it loves. What I love to do is be creative, and usually with physical materials. So I’d come up with these mini projects for myself and I would enjoy doing them so much I’d sometimes lose track of time and stay up until 3am doing these weird things because I just enjoyed it so much. Some of these weird things include:
building furniture out of things you’re not supposed to build furniture out of
redoing my kitchen with things you’re not supposed to redo kitchens with
making my ping pong table swing and fold out from the garage walls for no apparent reason
making a growler holder for the back of my bike then finding out the hard way that road bike wheels will bend when you’re going 20mph with 3 full growlers on the back… luckily I was able to call it R&D and not E&R
anything involving stencil making.. usually out of tape or cardboard
The last point is really the beginning of Zwybie’s. For a long time now I’ve loved to create stencils to make what I thought were cool paint designs. And to me that’s what mattered.. I thought they were cool. I was passionate about it. Luckily I’ve found that some other people like my designs sometimes. And that’s cool too. Some of those same people suggested I start selling some of my designs, which is really how this all started. Luckily technology now allows for me to skip all the tape and cardboard and design right onto the media.
I have the opportunity now to not only do something I’m passionate about, but to do something with a purpose to bring something to others that they might enjoy. Meshing passion with purpose is one of the best things one can strive for in their work. With a little luck, Zwybie’s can do just that.
However you got here, I’m very glad you did. I hope you like what we have to offer, and that it might bring you a little joy.