Fashion Friday: Mothers (and aunts) of Invention, Pt 2

From themed birthday parties to creative ways of sneaking veggies into kids’ meals, moms are full of bright ideas everyday. In fact the BabyLegs brand began with one mom who made legwarmers by snipping the feet off a pair of socks so her baby’s diaper rash could get some fresh air, and in doing so also discovered that the impromptu accessory made diaper changing and potty training a breeze.

Got a million dollar idea? Here we take a final look at moms and aunts who have made the hectic lives of parents a little easier with inventive baby products—a little inspiration to turn those million dollar ideas into a fruitful reality.  By Angela Velasquez

MagBaby__450

Magnificent Baby

A magnificent head of hair inspired Magnificent Baby. When Lauren Levy’s nephew Charlie was born with “neon orange” hair, her entire dark-haired family became enthralled with protecting it. “We were fascinated with the color and then one day his hair got caught on the Velcro of a bib,” she recalls. “Well, no one touches the hair!” That moment, along with challenges dressing a crying infant in snap one-pieces, got the aunt thinking: “There must be a better, more efficient way.”

Levy connected with her college friend Lawrence Scheer and together they developed a plan to create a line of infant apparel with easy-to-use, pain-free magnetic closures. Levy made a risky bet by leaving her career in investment banking and enrolling at F.I.T. to learn the ins and outs of fashion design, but with a sharp, detailed business plan in tow, Magnificent Baby was launched.

The company was stamped with moms’ seals of approval early on, helping secure Magnificent Baby’s fate as a go-to line for infant and toddlers. “Parents really love our products. We were asked for bigger sizes, then sleep sacks, then new fabrications… we have been able to expand the line into an entire range of accessories,” Levy says. Today, the company has a “board of moms” to sound off on what styles and designs they like before they ever reach stores

Magnificent Baby Girl Magnificent Baby Boy Magnificent Baby Hoodie

Captions: owl print gown, two-piece pant set, hoodie

 

SnapMe swimsuit 1

SnapMe Swimwear

Moms might scoff at the idea of a relaxing beach day, but Renee Marrin, beachgoer and mother of two girls, was determined to find a way to simplify the process of changing a sandy tot during a jaunt to the beach. “Going to the beach always seemed like more work than fun,” she adds. That moment of frustration led her to develop SnapMe Swimwear. The line features one-piece swimsuits made with durable UVP protective fabric and rows of snaps for easy diaper changes and bathroom breaks.

Marrin says she had the luck of having a lot of people helping her including folks with expertise in pattern making, manufacturing and behind-the-scenes experience at behemoths such as Kohl’s. “There’s certainly been a learning curve,” the former graphic designer adds. For example, early on she ran into sizing problems. “I had to urge customers to order a size up,” she reports. And the 2013 line was perfected during “endless rounds of changes.”

Color and prints are supped up, because from her own experience Marrin finds it is easier to “pick out your kid from a big group of kids when they have on something distinct.” Crowd sourcing has been a resourceful tool for the company’s development, too. She says, “I put my suits on Facebook and get immediate feedback from moms. I learn what they like, what they want. As a result, I’m in the process of adding rash guards to the line.”

SnapMe swimsuit 2      SnapMe swimsuit 3

Captions: polka dot swim suit, rash guard one-piece, striped bathing suit

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About the Author:

Angela Velasquez

With 4 years of experience as a children’s stylist and magazine editor, Angela brings you an insider’s perspective on trends and seasonal looks that will make babies and toddlers shine in their holiday photos and at birthday parties!  Angela also has a way of making everyday clothes and accessories look special — she’ll show you how.

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