I think there would be a demand. I like the design though. Usually, its not the design that professional violinists are looking for, its the sound. its attractive to the eye especially for beginning violinists. Also, carvings on wood. The designs that you have is also nice if its carved on the violin.
by the way what I haven't mentioned is that there would be a web interface to customize the violin and place the decorations where you want. So the result would not just be a decorated violin but a custom violin with your personal touch added to it (and potentially your name written on it).
The ornaments would be painted below the varnish.
Does this change anyone's opinion or do you think it's not important?
i wouldnt say its not important but I won't highly regard the decorations. I'll be neutral. I like extraordinary looking violins: rare wood, rare design and even carvings. You could check my bird's eye violin, with bird's eye neck and tailpiece and chinrest too,the pegs are also white maple wood. It's rare only 3 people here in the Philippines that possesses a model like mine. One is a very good violinist the other is a multi-millionaire and me. But aside from decorations and customizing it, the tone it produces is very important too. I could easily tell if the tone the violin produces is alive, has depth and has life in it or its just a squeaky sound boucing off a wall or something. But customizing your violin is a good one too! I would like to customize my violin only if zhang shu-mei would work on it. i had my name written inside my violin too and had my violin's name embroidered on its lapel cover. I'm planning to have her name written inside one of these days. But i love your idea, it could have a demand on the market! Not everyone could have a violin according to their design and wishes, so this one is a good opportunity!
About the quality, i am italian and lived in cremona for many years, my partner is from japan and sells very expensive violins (100,000 eur +, some strads etc). He speaks italian and lived in italy, right now he set up a lab in china, where he took chinese workers and taught them how to make violins in the authentic cremona tradition, these guys are very hard working but they didn't know how to make good violins, hadn't even seen one prior to us teaching them. We constantly supervise them, and we have outlets for "so-so" violins that we feel don't live up to the quality (he sends them in bulk to taiwan for a fraction of the price, even if they have a tiny defect).
So right now he produces near-cremonese quality violins, stuff that my buddies in cremona sell for 8000 eur, he makes for 2000-2500 eur, depending if the wood is chinese wood or european wood (client's choice).
The whole decoration thing is simply a "differentiation" strategy we were wondering about, because we want to sell online (that's where I come in...).
we'll do everything possible to try to give people a real understanding of the quality online, i.e. recording with high quality microphones and hidden camera interview with vendors who ROUTINELY tell us that they think our violins are worth in excess of 5000 eur (when they are made with european wood, so they can't just look at the chinese wood and pass a judgment!)
So quality is the #1 concern - customization is simply a fun thing that can be done on the net
Incidentally my main biz is IT and while I play the violin I am not skilled at selling violins, so I'm just trying to get some feedback to pass on to my japanese friend so that we can make a product that people want.
He told me he didn't think decorations would be valuable to pros, but he wasn't sure about beginners.
So - opinions on any of this are greatly appreciated!!!