August 30, 2004

Starting a 'Parent Company'

Patemm, Elizabeth Mitchell, and a post I'm working on right now... It's been staring me in the face for months: a lot of parents are so dissatisfied with the pregnancy/baby/kid industry, they feel compelled to do something about it.

You know the drill. "I wanted [check all that apply] clothes/furniture/toys/advice book/blanket/something to help me do [whatever], but everything I found was bland/crap/homogenous/cutesy/over-sentimenalized/outdated stereotype-reinforcing/shoddy/mass-produced/environmentally destructive/aesthetically offensive, so I decided to do it myself."

Daddy Types will highlight these solutions in a new category, Parent Company. Let me know what you think. [If you think it sucks, I'm sure there's a Gap Baby at a mall near you.]


Its a great idea! Most of the best products I have seen were started by parents. Combi has even wised up and made a message board for parents to suggest products they'd like to see and have designed new things based on these suggestions. There are so many of these companies and stores now.

I have even considered starting my own store in Louisville since the baby product industry here isn't so grand. Luckily a woman here started The Nest or I'd have gone insane with all the mass-produced crap we have here.

Three women in my wife's playgroup started a business that is basically an indoor play land for kids, with a lounge/cafe/wi-fi for adults to sit around and chat. In the first few weeks, it's a smashing success; just about every kid leaves there kicking and screaming.

My favorite story like this is that of Dan Zanes, former lead singer of the Del Fuegos (great indie rock band). When he had kids, he couldn't find any music for them that he liked, so he started making his own. Check out festival five records.

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