Mom’s Talk Q&A: Online Couture for Kids to Keep in Site
By Estelle Sobel Erasmus
Q: I am getting tired of wasting time and money at stores that sell children’s clothing. Frankly, I would rather do my shopping (and savings) online. Are there any NJ-based online vendors that I should look up?
A: I, too, love trying new outlets for fashions and accessories for my daughter. Lots of moms in my mothers’ groups on meetup.com (The Parent Connection, North Jersey Moms Meetup Group, Hip Mamas of Northern NJ) are starting their own online retail businesses, borne out of frustration with the limitations (and high cost) of existing venues. Many of the moms offer their products at crafts fairs and festivals. In fact, the company, little z, showcased their wares, and I purchased an adorable sailor dress for my daughter that reminds me of a dress Shirley Temple (who my daughter is said to resemble) once wore. Here are a few online clothing/accessory sites worth checking out:
Owner: Kim Krentcil, mom of 14-month-old “diva” Jordan
Find At: www.facebook.com/divajordanboutique and Diva Jordan’s Boutique at the eBay Store.
Birth of a Business: My friends and coworkers kept asking me where I was buying all of my daughter’s adorable accessories, and I began to realize that I could save money for myself and others by making them myself. So now I bring all these great deals to you, and the accessories add just the perfect “pop” for your photos.
Items Sold: Hats, headbands with flowers on them; flower barrettes and bows in a variety of styles and colors for girls; and we recently added hats and neck ties for boys. We also offer bows for the 4th of July and to celebrate your favorite team, whether it’s the Yankees, Mets, Giants, Jets or Knicks.
Hip To Be Wear
Owner: Chasity Glazer, mom of son, Ryan, 6 and daughter, Rachel, 5.
Found At: Hip To Be Wear on Facebook, or at email@example.com. Our website www.hiptobewear.com will be up this fall. Mention this column and receive 10% off your first order.
Birth of a Business: For the past several years, I was busy raising my children. Once they started school, and I had more free time, I was ready to pursue my long-held dream of owning my own children’s clothing company. Hip To Be Wear was born in August of 2009. Every article of our clothing is custom designed and made-to-order. Our motto is “Personalized for Personalization.”
Items Sold: Our vast collection offers “hip” accessories such as jewelry for women and children (peace sign bracelets and jewelry boxes with matching cupcake necklaces are hot sellers), as well as clothing: dresses, t-shirts, sweat-shirts, pettiskirts, tutus, tank tops, bibs, onesies, boys shirts and more. We also carry quilted, stain-proof beach bags; diaper, laptop, and iPad bags, backpacks and lunch boxes. Each item can be personalized (from over 40 fonts), or monogrammed. Gift wrapping is free, and we will include a personalized note.
Photo credit: Mary McConville of tearsofjoyphotography.com
Owner: Nicole Imbriale Yampolsky, mom of Nikko, 21 months
Birth of a Business: From the moment I found out I was having a boy I became obsessed with finding cute and comfortable clothes for my little bundle of joy. Once my son turned 19 months old, and I was able to get a decent night’s sleep, I started putting my own design ideas to the test. Our motto is “lil threadz…a lil bit of heart goes into each stitch.”
Items Sold: Hip, handmade, one-of a kind t-shirts using natural, organic materials. The designs are hand-cut; applied to the shirts using a non-toxic adhesive and then sewn securely to the fabric. Shirts (many in vintage/retro prints) can be personalized with your child’s name on the back. My best sellers include customized birthday shirts, owl designs and rocket tees. For some of the newer designs I am using imported cotton and linen fabrics from Japan. I’m planning to start making organic children’s blankets this summer.
Photo Credits: Diane Fields of dianefieldsphotography.com
Owner: Sandy Zeccardi, Stay at home mom of Max, 2, and Eliot, 15 months
Find At: Facebook.com/littlezkids. We have an online store there, too.
Birth of a Business: I’m a stay at home mom of two boys who became tired of seeing the same old boring “chain store” clothing on every child. A frequent traveler before kids, I always was so impressed by the way other children dressed around the world. This is why I began importing select pieces from around the globe and introduced “little z” limited designs.
Items Sold: My current collection includes dresses, short/tee onesies, tops, skirt and legging combinations, vintage t-shirts, not so boring tights (my bestselling item, which can be worn alone or under a skirt and is also ideal for fall/winter). My sons suffer from eczema so most of my items are 100% cotton, and I’m extra careful about choosing comfortable designs and fabrics.
Tutu’s By Kelli
Photo credit: By Dayana Anlas-Marchisio of dayanaphotography.com
Owner: Kelli Caltabilotta, mom of three children: son, Josh, 13, twin girls, Shelby and Ashley, 5.
Find At: Tutu’s by Kelli on Facebook and www.tutusbykelli.com
Birth of a Business: I started making tutus for fun for my girls last year, and loved doing it. Then some moms asked if I could make tutus for their daughters. They were so happy with them, that they suggested I sell them. I signed up for my first craft fair this month and was surprised at all the positive feedback I received, and that I almost completely sold out.
Items Sold: Handmade tutu dresses in a variety of colors and lengths for girls, newborn to 6 years old. All my dresses are made up of a soft halter crochet top with adjustable satin ribbon ties, and yards of tulle. I also take custom orders, where I can add little embellishments to the dress, like flowers, crystals and pearls.