We are excited to feature Jeanine Seabold & her small business, Little Sprout Children’s Boutique on our blog! Little Sprout is a children’s Boutique with Items for girls and boys, newborn to size 7 include clothing, accessories, shoes, wooden toys, gear and gifts. Many handmade and organic clothing as well specialty boutique brands that you will not find anywhere else! The merchandise changes often to reflect the latest trends, but the favorites are always available. Little Sprout carefully selects produces that are proven to be best in class, and can help with a personal selection to meet your needs. Little sprout has registry program to help out all of our local mamas get ready for motherhood. From practical products like Life Factory glass bottles and Aden & Anais swaddling blankets, to fun clothing like Kicky Pants bamboo sleepers and tutus… we have you covered.
You can connect and follow the stores online site at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Little-Sprout-Childrens-Boutique/128505220493572
What’s one thing that everyone should know about you?
One thing to know about me is: What you see on the outside, is a direct reflection of how I feel on the inside. In other words, if I am sad or angry about something you will know. Conversely, if I am happy or ecstatic about something you will know that too! It’s physically impossible for me to “hide’ my emotions.
How long have you been in business and how did you get started?
After earning a bachelor’s degree in merchandising in 2003 at Western Michigan University, I started off in retail and then I was an inventory analyst in the buying office at Sears, Roebuck and Co. in Hoffman Estates, Ill., and then an executive assistant at Lucky Brand Dungarees Inc. in New York. I worked with children’s clothing at both companies. So i pretty much worked in all the different facets on the retail chain, but I had one job left, and that was to open my own store. There were already so many women’s boutiques at the time of the epiphany but not one children’s specialty store, so my choice was very simple. I saw a great business opportunity… I recognized a “need/want” in Kalamazoo and I filled it. I have been open now for 4 1/2 wonderful years!
What change are you looking forward to most this year…both personally and with your business?
Personally, I just want this year to be healthy… for me and everyone I love and care about. Professionally, I am looking forward to change… in the season and the store. AND not having salt on my floors. I am SO sick of winter.
Where do you go to find inspiration for your business?
I get my inspiration from customers mostly… when they walk in, I observe, without staring, at what they gravitate towards. I also have lots of brilliant gorgeous kids in my life, so I use them as my muse, if you will. I do most of my buying in Chicago at trade shows but will venture to NYC or Atlanta once a year to mix it up a bit. It’s the BEST feeling when I sell out of something because, that means I got it right!
Do you have a great tip or advice you can give us as a small business owner?
Never underestimate the power of numbers. The numbers don’t lie.
What is the favorite thing you like about your job?
Every part is my favorite but if I had to pick one, it would defiantly be the interactions with this wonderful community! After being open for 4 years and being able to watch these amazing babies grow into little people; it is quite inspiring. I love helping people pick out the perfect shower gift, birthday present and I LOVE helping new moms!
Do you have a hidden talent?
I do somewhere, but I seemed to of misplaced it.
How do you get a connection between you and your clients?
I feel that 90% of my job is connecting with people in this fabulous community. You may come in to buy a baby gift, but it may be after an hour of chatting about the weather, exchanging information for a good hair stylist, hearing about one of my MANY clumsy moments or consoling one another over a family tragedy. If I don’t connect with my customers on a personal level, outside of selling them something from my store, I am not doing my job.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
On a beach somewhere. That’s as far as I have gotten with the future.
What other profession would you love too try?
I do a little party planning, on the side… birthday parties, communions, showers etc. So if I could ever make that into a legitimate business, I would love to give that a go. It’s WAY too much fun!
What’s one thing that can just “make your day” amazing?
4 words: I LOVE YOUR STORE.
Please add anything else about yourself or your awesome business for us to share!!
Words I live by: “Fashion over function!”