An interview with Owner and Founder, Summer Harris:
Why did you start Baby Bling?
"When my little girl was born, I couldn't find a bow in a color that was outside of the typical white, pink, or pastel color - it was so annoying! I couldn't even get a good red unless it was the holidays. I thought then and there, I'm going to fix this."
Who was your first customer?
"My mom was working at a local boutique and they let us keep a little basket of bows up near their checkout area. Very quickly we were selling out of bows every day and before we knew it, we were in the wholesale bow business - it happened so fast!"
That leads to the next question, how did you start making all of those bows?
"Business picked up quickly, especially after finding a sales rep team that helped get us into larger retailers like Nordstrom. Needless to say, our team needed to scale with our growth. We hired friends and family to make our bows, and not soon after we had a waiting list of their friends and family who also wanted to sew!"
Are your bows really handmade?
"YES! We have the most incredible group of women that sew for us. This is a very important aspect of my business. Not only to keep our products the highest quality, but most importantly to continue to share the opportunity of maintaining that "sense of self" that can get a bit lost when you become a parent. I hope all of our sewists feel the same satisfaction at the end of the day, that I feel, knowing they are working for themselves."
Here are few of our sewers I'd love for you to meet.
Where can customers find your products?
"You can shop our bows on our website, at many small boutiques across the country (store locator here) and at major retailers like Nordstrom, Buy Buy Baby, and Von Maur. We are also happy to offer the convenience of Amazon shopping and have plans for more shopping opportunities in the near future. Anything that can make it easier on our customer."
100% women operated? So are no boys allowed?
"HAHA absolutely not! We are an equal opportunity employer through and through. However, we have found that strong minded, hard working women tend to stick together. We have always had incredible women in our community willing to get the job done!"
What has been your biggest challenge in the past 16 years?
"Honestly, it would probably be in the last 5 years. The baby bow market has become a bit more heavily saturated. Many overseas factories caught on to our success and began manufacturing low-quality versions of our designs. This opens doors for people to quickly jump into the market without going through the hard work of designing and manufacturing products. I feel like going about a business that way doesn't offer a lot of transparency in product quality. When you buy from a random overseas website, how do you know that the material checks off all the boxes for quality? How do you know the people who are sewing the products are being paid a fair wage and working in good conditions? It is so important for me to keep in mind why I got into this business in the first place and that is to offer unique, high quality bows WHILE supporting and uplifting other women in our community."
Why do you think it is so important to be #notjustabowcompany?
"I believe that everyone is responsible for contributing in a positive and uplifting way to their community, and that ripples out to the world. I believe as a business we show that we value every person by ensuring that we include all ethnicities, cultures, abilities and families in our marketing and the language that we use. We contract with diverse designers, share the talents of BIPOC makers and uplift the voices of others with diverse lived experiences. As individuals we educate ourselves on ways to be anti-racist, to support the LGBTQ+ community and be inclusive of all abilities and cultures so that we can teach our loved ones, and again, that will ripple out to the world."