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Northshore News – April 2009

Posted on: February 24th, 2010 by moojoes

Moms bring European flair to online boutique

Caroline Skelton, North Shore News
Published: Sunday, April 26, 2009

When Stephanie Loewen and Desiree Kranendijk moved to Canada from Holland, they had to leave behind a few of their favourite things.

One of them: the fun, funky and high-quality products for kids that they had both come to love during their time in Europe (Kranendijk grew up in Holland, while Loewen spent time in Luxembourg). Now, the North Shore moms have found a way to bring the products they love to Canada, and share them with others here and around the world.

Last month, they launched their online retail store, — specializing in innovative products for kids, mostly imported from Europe. Products on offer include bright headbands, cuddly sleep sacks, funky sock shoes, innovative float suits for the pool, and much more.

Loewen and Kranendijk have been careful to source products that are high quality, as eco-friendly as possible, and up to Europe’s strict safety standards — in other words, the kind of thing they dress their own kids in.

Keeping the business web-based also offers parents the ability to shop with ease from home. “Ordering online is the way to go these days,” says Loewen.

Loewen, a trained nurse, and Kranendijk, an Internet optimization specialist, know a thing or two about what busy parents are looking for. With five (soon to be six) kids between them, the moms had their hands full getting the business off the ground over the last nine months.

“We do a lot at night, or during the day, where we get all the kids together, and the dog, so that everybody has a play date,” says Loewen.

For these moms, who met on the Grouse Grind and quickly bonded over their experiences overseas, building the business is also about spreading the word about the high-quality kids products available, and the benefits of buying products that last.

The goal? “Besides just selling and having fun, a bit of awareness,” says Kranendijk.