In 2005, working mother Sari Crevin created the very first prototype of SippiGrip in San Ramon, California. She was becoming frustrated when her one-year-old son, Jake, would throw his sippy cup to the floor from his high chair, stroller and car seat. Sari was constantly picking up the cups that were either getting dirty or getting lost. “Necessity really was the mother of invention, and I could not find any product, in stores or on-line, that met my needs,” Sari remembers. Hence, the SippiGrip was born.
After an evolution of prototypes, research and testing of the SippiGrip, Sari formed BooginHead LLC in September 2007, and dedicated herself to launching the new and useful product for parents — and for parents everywhere she has helped end the cup-throwing game!
BooginHead LLC is currently located in Bellevue, Wash., where the sister product, PaciGrip was created in 2008. BooginHead’s PaciGrip is a universal pacifier holder in matching SippiGrip colors. Although not a new concept, Sari’s product is fashionable, universally compatible with all pacifier brands and is the most affordable product available. PaciGrip is BooginHead’ s best-selling item.
The third product, Splat Mat, a unique 48” round reusable mat in three fashion forward colors guaranteed to catch every spill, was introduced last year at The ABC Show.
BooginHead continues to move forward in creating several other solutions-based products that are geared toward simply making the lives of parents easier! “The basis for all the products I create need to fit a certain criteria: Is it solving a problem, is it fashionable and does it break the bank? In this economy it is a need versus a want, so creating functional products that meet a need and look more expensive than they are is a great niche,” Sari says.
Her products have won multiple awards including two iParenting Media Awards, Creative Child Magazine’s Seal of Excellence Award and were featured in Target’ s “2008 Parent Invented Products Program.” SippiGrip and PaciGrip are sold in retailers nationwide, online and internationally, including Target and Babies “R” Us.
Sari graduated from the University of Arizona where she majored in human resource management with a degree from the School of Business. She also is a certified life coach and focuses on career coaching. She is one of the few people whose career derived from her major. “By day” Sari is the human resources manager in the X-Box Division at Microsoft. She lives in Bellevue, Wash., with her husband and their two young sons.
What are you working on right now?
We are on the verge of launching two new products that simply make parents’ lives easier! The PaciPouch and PaciBed, coming October 2010.
3 trends that excite you?
1. Parents being the new inventors of products. It used to be only large companies could bring their own ideas to market.
2. With a down economy more small businesses are starting up and have less barriers to entry.
3. Purple is the new pink.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Honestly, my ideas are born out of solutions that I need myself! As the parent of two young sons, new challenges crop up every day. BooginHead’s philosophy is to make new and useful products for parents — simple ideas that simply work.
What inspires you?
My family always has nurtured and inspired my entrepreneurial spirit. My mother started her own business and worked seven days a week, and my father was incredibly supportive and cooperative. Having that type of upbringing showed me that all options were open to me. It was stimulating to know there were multiple paths in life I could take. Of course, my boys were the direct inspiration for my products and business!
What is one mistake you’ve made that our readers can learn from?
In the beginning I tried to do everything myself instead of hiring experts to do it right the first time.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Hmm, I wouldn’t be a very good business person if I was willing to give away ideas!
What is one book and one tool that helps you bring ideas to life?
I gained a lot of knowledge from other mompreneur sites and experts such as MommyMillionaire.com.
Who would you love to see interviewed on IdeaMensch?
The women who created Jibbitz.
Why did you tackle international distribution?
After a couple of years attending The ABC Kids Expo trade show, I had seen some incredible growth in the United States with Target, Babies “R” Us, BuyBuyBaby and Amazon.com. It had become clear to me from watching my competitors that international distribution was the next step. This can be a daunting task without having an understanding of how the retail business operates in other countries. I learned through relationships I had formed at the trade a show, that working with international distributors was the best route to get into foreign markets. These distributors often attend the trade shows and will approach you directly to work with them.
How do you balance two careers and a family?
Essentially I think of myself as having two full-time jobs, two kids and a husband, which is a lot to juggle at one time. There are a few things I do in order to help manage my crazy schedule. First, I give myself a break in every sense of the word. I make time for myself to exercise and have downtime in order to recharge and refocus. Secondly, I try not to put pressure on myself to do everything perfectly all the time. It’s just human nature for women to feel like they need to do everything exactly right, and this isn’t possible. Sometimes my children need more attention than my business and vice versa. I try to go with the ebb and flow and prioritize what is most important at that time.
In our family we have a “no work zone” between the hours of 5 and 7:30 p.m. This is when the four of us spend time together eating dinner and playing without any interruptions — no phones, TV, work, etc. Having that structure in place, so that we know we are carving out time for our family and for ourselves, is very, very important.
E-mail: [email protected]
Mario Schulzke is the Founder of ideamensch, which he started a decade ago to learn from entrepreneurs and give them a platform for their ideas.