About HomePlates... and Barbara Hobart
Back in 1994, Barbara Hobart was working in Los Angeles as a TV comedy writer/producer and during a hiatus she was puttering around her garage and inadvertently came up with a fun new way to decorate light switch plates for her new home. (Back then, decorative switchplates weren't even a "thing" -- much less a tangible product.)
In 2003, while visiting friends in London, she offered to make them a switchplate to replace their plain, boring, white switch. She was told: “You can’t. UK switches are wired into the wall and are not removable.” Well, "can’t” isn’t a word in Barbara's vocabulary. And so, a challenge became an opportunity -- and an international business:
In 2004, Barbara invented and introduced the first injection molded decorative light switch cover to the UK -- which required no rewiring. (One of her very first accounts was manufacturing switch covers for Laura Ashley; matching their gorgeous wallpapers onto switchplates.)
After a few years, wanting to leave no continent undecorated, decorative switch covers were introduced to the Australian and New Zealand marketplace and HomePlates Worldwide, Inc. was officially born. Today HomePlates has expanded and develops, creates, and sources a variety of products for businesses and brands across the globe... on purpose.
Some of our clients include: Laura Ashley, British Home Stores, John Lewis Department Store, WIC, Grand Ole Opry, Gifford's Ice Cream, Blake Shelton, Aspace, Netflix, Kroger, BBC America, Live Nation, House of Blues, The Coca Cola Company, The Campbell's Soup Company, and many others.
In 2019, Barbara launched Best Ever Backdrops, a line of 100% waterproof, lightweight, and stain resistant backdrops for photographers, bloggers, and stylists because she was tired of watching her photographer friends lift ridiculously heavy backdrops that could earn them gold medals in weightlifting. If you need to photography your products, shoot them on the best backdrop in the market.
Launched in October 2023, Barbara created a new company and course called Branding 101 -- where she teaches you how easy it is to create custom products and branded merchandise. From amazing SWAG, to subscription boxes or spice lines... great gifts for your folowers, and any other product you've dreamed of. There's also a Free 4-Part mini course that gives you lots of ideas and where I break the myths you need a huge investment to begin. Actually, you can start with zero upfront costs.
As for writing, yes, Barbara still writes for a variety of media: television, stage, and print.