“Ootrey” he said. That’s what I’m going to call my business one day. I think he continued speaking but I had just switched off by this point. The way I understand it, one day is the place you put all your hopes and dreams for yourself and your family. The place you go when you dream of when things are ideal. (Which as we all know is never). When he told me about it I honestly never thought we would be here. Chasing dreams and all that.
Just so you know Ootrey is pronounced exactly as it is spelt. It is derived from the word outré which means “passing the bounds of what is considered normal and proper; unconventional and bizarre”. His idea for the brand is for it to be funky and fresh, geeky and quirky. Something completely different from what we currently know to be the norms whilst still meeting the need to his passion. Honestly the process to getting here has been so scary! But so exciting!
So what is this new business you may be wondering. Ian is an Optician. He went into the optics field, after being moved by his uncle who was blind. By moved, I mean that he saw the struggle for sight, a sense that is so often taken for granted. In his practical year, his favourite part of his job working in clinics was being able to see customers put on their glasses for the first time. The look on someone’s face when they can see. Being able to contribute to this process gives him great joy!
In South Africa today, only 17% of our population have access to medical aid. Prescription eyewear is also really expensive. This means most people who should be wearing glasses either don’t have access entirely or aren’t seeing optimally because of financial constraints. This has bothered Ian for years, and then he decided he wanted to do something about it. Ootrey is his way of making sight more accessible in his way (funky, geeky and different).
With all this in mind could I really hold him back? His heart is in the right place, and because situations will never be completely perfect he just did it. I am so excited for what is to come, the ideas streaming out of this man are amazing. I couldn’t be prouder. First hand, doing something you love really love honestly does change you! He is so happy and excited.
Ootrey launches on the 1 September 2017, he is active on social media at Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and you can sign up on the site for news on his products, funky pop culture articles and the introduction to his new range. Guys I am just bursting to tell you more but mum’s the word!