Wednesday, June 29, 2011

cupcakeMAG shops: Way Tutu Cute

Way Tutu Cute. Adorable name right? Well, that isn't all that is adorable! This oh-so-chic online boutique is filled with tons of goodies for your Little Ladies and Gentlemen. But, they also give lots of love and support to Mom Owned Biz -- which, we LOVE them for -- another reason we shop at Way Tutu Cute!

Let us introduce you to Heather -- the golden girl behind Way Tutu Cute. Read on to enter to win $25 to start shopping and all about her super sweet online shop.

{1}Tell us a little bit about yourself and the biz, Way Tutu Cute?

I am a mother of two beautiful little girls (ages 2 and 5). By day, I'm a marketing manager and have worked for the same company for just over 7 years. I've always been overly ambitious and enjoy a challenge. I've
always wanted to start my own business, but after a few failed attempts, I decided it was best to let the idea fall into my lap. In 2009, when my oldest was old enough to realize that she wanted to be a princess and a
ballerina, I realized how expensive things would be (especially with two girls). I decided to learn how to make a tutu for her because the ones I was finding online were so expensive. I posted a picture of the finished product on Facebook and instantly got requests from friends to create a tutu for their girls as well. Less than a week later, I had a website, a Facebook fan page and a new business. I wanted to sell tutus and hair accessories at a reasonable price. Luckily, I have the most amazing husband who I like to refer to as "super-dad". With his help, I was able to make time to create and sell.

{Way Tutu Cute, White Tank Dress, $25}
{2} What made you decide to start your online shopping empire? (so amazing that your support Mom Owned Biz!)

After networking with some other local mompreneurs, I realized that although they had some amazing items to sell, they didn't have the outlet. I began listing other Mom-made items on the site and within six months, I was up to nearly 50 different lines. All of the items offered were designed by, created by or sewn by a Mom or Dad. We are now up to nearly 75 lines and have expanded to include some of my personal favorite lines such as mudpie and Jellycat.

{mudpie, Cupcake Flarey Longall, $30}
{3} Do you have a current favorite item on Way Tutu Cute?

I can't say I have a favorite item. I handpick each item before I list it, so I love every single one of them. At least half of my girl's clothes and accessories were purchased on my site.

{4} What is your favorite part about running your own business?

There is nothing I don't love about owning and running the business. Working in retail for over 11 years gave me a great background and taught me how important customer service is. I pride myself on always going the
extra mile for every customer and have not only gained so many regular customers, but some friends as well. I especially love helping my customers create their dream outfit for their kids birthday and then seeing the pictures and hearing how everyone went crazy over their original outfit.

{a line we love: Petit Couture}

{5} Do you have any tips for Mom Owned brands trying to get started?

The most important thing is to have a plan. If you're selling tangible items, make sure to have beautiful pictures. Contact local photographers who may be willing to barter with you. You don't have to spend a fortune to get your business up and running. Do your research! What are others charging for similar products? Be competitive! And most of all, don't be afraid to network with other mompreneurs. You'd be surprised what a close-knit community you'll find.

{celebs love Way Tutu Cute}
{6} What is up next for Way Tutu Cute?

Sky's the limit for us! We just sponsored the Eva Longoria Rally for Kids With Cancer in Miami and we donated 10% of every purchase to the American Cancer Society. We will be attending a pre-Emmy's gifting suite in September. We also just launched a brand new line, Leg Candy, at the Baby Expo and the buzz has already started! Leg Candy offers leg/arm warmers in a variety of bright colors and patterns. They are available in sugar free (plain), extra sugar (swarovski crystals on one leg) or sugar rush (swarovski crystals on both legs). They come wrapped like a piece of candy and are ready to give as a gift.

When shopping for Littles we LOVE all of the FABulous things Way Tutu Cute shows off but let us fill you in on cupcakeMAG approved items for your Littles! The Pippy & LoLo Tie Dye A Line Dress is a must-have item in your Littles closet. It also was a Golden Globe Celebrity Swag Bag item for 2011! 

{One of our FAVES for summer}

Brag About Baby Blue My Mind Diaper Clutch: Perfect for the mommaista on-the-go who loves to be functional yet stylish. Once your Little is out of diapers use it as a makeup case or a clutch! What's not to love? We also can't get enough of their Glass Slipper Binkie Blankie -- it is definitely something we don't leave home without. 

Snuggle Bug Kidz Simply Rose Swarovski Crystal Set of 4 Clippies: We absolutely love these gorgeous hair clips for girls. They add just the right amount of bling to every outfit. 

Make sure you also check out Eight Baby Legs, Polka Dot Baby Bowtique, and Kota Couture --- just a few more of our favorites! 

{All Things Way Tutu Cute}

{Read on to enter to win a $25 gift voucher to Way Tutu Cute NOW!}

Friday, June 3, 2011

Featured Etsy Designer -- Alyson of Eisley Rae

Eisley Rae is a {sweet} little Etsy shop we came across for our oh-so-chic Littles. Looking to dress them in something not so average? Eisley Rae is your go to place & we are jumping for joy {literally!} to share them with you.

Alyson is the designer behind the name and Eisley Rae is her everything {besides her 2 precious kids & darling hubs of course} and that passion shines through not just her personality but her work as well. Alyson pays close attention to detail and mixes fabrics you won't always see together -- just a few things we LOVE about Eisley Rae. From her very famous so to speak, Lily Pants, perfect skirts, and just about any custom item you want - Alyson does it all & is so amazing at it!

{the cutest ruffle pants around, Lily Pants, $16}
Read on to see what inspired the MOMpreneur and what is up next for Eisley Rae in our exclusive chat with Alyson.

{1.}Tell us about yourself & your shop, Eisley Rae?

Hi! My name is Alyson and I live in Southern California with my husband and two kids. I have a 7 year old daughter and a 3 year old little boy. Eisley Rae is where you can find all kinds of cute clothing for your little ladies & lads!

{2.}When did you begin sewing?

I've sewn here and there since I was young, but I didn't really start sewing on a regular basis until I was pregnant with my son.

{3.}What made you decide to open your Etsy shop?

After spending way too much money on shopping for customs for my daughter, I decided it was something that I could do. I started out making her a couple of summer dresses and people began asking where I got them and if I would make one for their child...the rest is history.

{It's a Hoot Skirt}
{4.} Where do you pull your inspiration from?

Most of my inspiration comes from my daughter, Etsy, Pinterest, fabric and the season! I love that my 7 year old will suggest something, I'll search for fabric, buy it and make our ideas come to life! Even just searching for fabric online is a great inspiration to me, to see a beautiful print and think that it'd look great as a dress, skirt, ruffles, etc!

{5.} What is your favorite part about having your own biz?

I absolutely love that I can work at my own pace. Not having a boss or a "strict" schedule. I try to always allow extra time in case "life happens", to keep my customers happy. But, most of all, I love the relationships that I've gained from "working" in the handmade community! I've made some lifelong friends and learned some wonderful lessons from women who really inspire me. Being home with my kids is the icing on the cake though!

{6.} Do you have any other favorite Etsy shops?

I have SO many favorite Etsy shops! Lately I'm in LOVE with everything over at Bubblewrapp'd! But, I also love Mama Matryoshka for adorable paper goods & party supplies. Very soon, I plan to order a wristlet from Hiya Luv. There are so many more that I could go on and on about!

{the jacket that has our heart, Sweetheart Jacket, $16}
{7.} What is up next for Eisley Rae?

This summer I'm working on lots of new things for Eisley Rae. I'm excited to start on the home decor line which will include pillow, framed hair clip/head band/bow holders, framed jewelry racks and lots more! There will surely be lots of ruffles and adorable stuff for little girls and their mamas!
Make sure you LIKE Eisley Rae on Facebook to stay up to date on all things and to make sure you don't miss any Facebook sales! We are BIG fans of their sales. Follow Alyson on Twitter and check out her blog for a great read!
Check out Eisley Rae on Etsy and support HANDmade now.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

"Breathe. Let go.
And remind yourself that this very moment
is the only one you know you have for sure.”
{Orpah Winfrey}

Head over to cupcakeMAG to read a very special note from Moi!


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