What’s the philosophy behind DIY Devotees Ltd?
We’re of the belief that much DIY-related stuff seems mysterious, baffling, downright confusing and sometimes, very frustrating for women. And it’s not surprising – so few women are shown how to do particular tasks. We wanted to change that, so our philosophy is quite simple: to help women interested in DIY to do what they want to do, with the right environment, the right tools, expert guidance and support. We wanted to provide women with a safe, confidence-building, supportive environment in which to learn in. We wanted women to succeed in their DIY endeavours and believe it isn’t enough to provide the tools - guidance and ongoing support is also needed, to really make a difference.
What do DIY - statistics say?
Statistics taken from the Newspaper Advertising Bureau (NAB) findings on home improvement in 2004 show that six in ten home improvement shoppers are men, however more women are now completing DIY jobs themselves. Apparently women have always been the biggest customers for paints and some chain stores have noticed a steady increase in women shoppers, particularly those looking for power tools. Research shows that around 61% of NZ women tackled DIY tasks and 66% of them used power tools. Major reasons women give for taking up more renovations around the home are “lazy husbands", "saving money” and "because I can."
Why are the products and services only accessible through the internet?
We wanted to avoid multiple outlets, the additional associated costs borne by customers and well, being one of the crowd. We’re not like everybody else and we want to keep it that way. We also wanted to avoid confusion – placement in multiple outlets with thousands of other DIY products would make ours harder to find. Our products aren’t intended for home-style related stores either, because they’re not novelty items, they’re the real deal. We’re mindful too, that more and more customers today are shopping on line, for convenience.
What makes DIY Devotees Ltd different from other companies supplying DIY-related products for women?
We are different in a number of ways: we provide an Essential Toolkit; a practical Guide book (Give It A Try DIY) with 20 different tasks to try; DIY-related workshops and membership to the DIY Devotees Club. We provide women with the opportunity to learn to 'do DIY stuff' with like minded women, in a supportive, confidence-building environment with friendly, helpful tutors. We are building a community of learning amongst the DIY Devotees (through the workshops and e-zine), so tips and ideas can be shared and knowledge effectively spread around the community. We are serious about providing women interested in DIY with what they need, to help them do what they want to do.
Why only eleven essential tools in the essential tool kit?
Research has shown that there are eleven ‘core’ tools needed to form the foundation for most tasks. Many toolkits available today have anything between twenty through to a hundred different tools yet not all those tools would be used by a home maintenance-intent DIY Devotee. Our essential toolkit contains eleven essential tools so a DIY Devotee needn't waste money on tools they may never use and they can then purchase additional tools, on an as needed basis.
Would the workshops be relevant to me if I already know a little about a topic?
Yes, we believe so. In talking to many DIY Devotees, we’ve heard about them ‘picking up stuff’ as they’ve gone along. Picking stuff up may mean we learn to do things incorrectly or in the most labour-intensive, difficult way possible. Our workshops are delivered by experienced tutors who know what they’re talking about and can show the correct way to do things – with good technique and health and safety issues in mind! The workshops will give the new through to the most experienced DIY Devotee something – whether it is new information, general guidance or confirmation that what they’re doing, is just great.
Why women-only workshops?
Our research has shown that women interested in DIY want to learn in a women-only environment, so they can freely ask questions, make ‘mistakes’ and practise doing things without feeling uncomfortable for doing so. Many women reported past incidences of being laughed at or having their DIY efforts scorned by their significant others, which they found off-putting and not surprisingly, a blow to their confidence. We wanted to provide a service to women that will meet their learning needs in an area that has traditionally been dominated by men. Our workshop tutors are mostly male however, all tutors have been selected because of their skills, experience and ability to make DIY Devotees feel comfortable in their learning. One reason for the mostly male tutors in these trade areas is the overall lack of women in trades throughout New Zealand and the flow on effect from that … but that’s another story altogether. We’re hoping that some DIY Devotees may be so inspired by the workshops that they’ll undertake trades training and in time, tutor at our workshops!
What about the Human Rights Act and women-only workshops?
The workshops are being offered as part of the DIY Devotees Club: a group of women coming together voluntarily at the workshops, to learn DIY - related skills, share ideas and information, meet like-minded others, be part of a new community of learning and have some fun in a safe and supportive learning environment. The DIY Devotees Club means we are exempt by way of section 44 (4) of the Human Rights Act.
What’s the process to join the DIY Devotees Club?
It’s really easy. You can send a cheque for NZ$5 and all your contact details to DIY Devotees Ltd, and you’re in. Or the other way is to enrol for one of our workshops, as the workshop fee includes the cost of the workshop and the Club membership fee or attend the informal monthly DIY Devotees meetings in Christchurch.
What are my obligations as a DIY Devotees Club member?
None at all. There is no obligation on you by being a member of our Club – you can be as involved as you like.
What benefits are there as a member of the DIY Devotees Club?
You’ll be part of a group of like-minded women who are into DIY and enjoy learning in a supportive environment, asking DIY-related questions and sharing DIY-related tips and ideas. Other benefits include receiving a bi-monthly e-zine newsletter, with DIY tips and ideas and schedule of workshops; the opportunity to be part of focus groups to guide the development of future workshops; and incentives, for making group bookings. You might also have some fun along the way...
What is the incentive scheme all about?
We know from experience that a group of friends or workmates gathered together for a common purpose is the recipe for a fun time and a positive experience. So, if a DIY Devotee books herself and three or more other Devotees to attend the same workshop, the organising DIY Devotee will receive the Give it a Try DIY book as a gift.
What are my ordering options?
You have several to choose from. You can order by phone, and by fax and post by downloading the Invoice/Order Form.
DIY Devotees Ltd takes a dim view of being ripped off, which is why we don’t want you ripped off either. We adhere to the requirements of the Privacy Act, the Consumer Guarantees Act and the Fair Trading Act – all legislation that applies to transactions within New Zealand.
DIY Devotees Ltd sometimes find instant gratification a bit slow but we’ve realised we have to be more realistic. This means we will despatch goods purchased by cheque or money order or by direct deposit when the funds have been cleared from the bank. This may take up to five working days.