The Ashland High School student who invented the Doodle Bra appeared today on the ABC talk show, "The View," to talk about her invention.
Rachel Segal, 18, was interviewed Thursday in New York City for the segment about teen millionaires. The interview aired at 10 a.m. on ABC's local station KDRV Channel 12. Already-aired episodes of the view can be seen online at theview.abc.go.com.
"It was very scary, very exciting," Segal said during a phone interview Thursday from John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Segal, now a senior at Ashland High School, isn't a millionaire yet, but air time on "The View," which draws millions of viewers, could help nudge her toward a higher income bracket.
About 1,000 Doodle Bras have been sold since she and her family launched the online business early this year with a Web site and a press release that went to about 600 targets.
The bra costs $9.99 from DoodleBra.com. The Web site also offers shoes, purses, and other garments and accessories, all of which are made for doodling with the company's complimentary, non-toxic, washable markers and stencils.
During the TV segment, Segal explains how she conceived the Doodle Bra and how the idea expanded.
"The interview went well," she said. "Barbara Walters and Elisabeth Hasselbeck were wonderful, very nice and very professional. It was the first time I met celebrities. I was very nervous."
Segal appeared alone for the interview, but her parents, Randy and Betty Ann Segal, were in the audience during filming.
"We definitely didn't expect all the attention," Segal said. "We hoped for it. It's definitely exciting."
It's unclear how "The View" learned about the Doodle Bra. Segal simply received a phone call inviting her on the show.
In addition to local media coverage in Southern Oregon, the product has been discussed on radio shows in Australia and was part of a TV promotion in Germany, Segal said.
The bra is made of white cotton fabric and can be decorated with erasable markers. Once washed, it's back to a clean, blank canvas.
Segal wasn't looking for a business venture when she doodled on her bra one hot, idle summer afternoon in 2008. She and a group of her friends decided to entertain themselves by drawing on Segal's only white bra with her mother's colored markers. They drew a sunrise over a green rolling landscape on one bra cup and added graffiti-style images and words such as "V-Dog," (a friend's nickname) on the other.
Betty Ann was annoyed when she saw the girls' work of spontaneous art because her daughter didn't have another white bra to wear under light-colored blouses. Randy immediately saw a business plan. He contacted manufacturers in India and China to make the parts. The family took on the job of assembling the bras and shipping them out to customers.
The next step for the business will depend on the response from the show and how the business fares during the holidays.
Segal hopes to remain involved in the business when she heads off to college in 2010. She plans on staying close to home and attending Rogue Community College or Southern Oregon University. She hasn't decided yet what she'll study.
After the invitation to "The View," Segal mailed one of the bras to the show in preparation for Thursday's interview. Hasselbeck doodled on the bra before filming, but Segal wouldn't reveal what she drew.
"You'll have to watch the show to find out what it is," Segal said.
Reach reporter Paris Achen at 776-4459 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.