Monday, June 18, 2012
Dallas mom launches company for kids who love mismatched shoes
Moms: Isn't that ALL kids?
DALLAS When Dallas native Sharon Blumberg discovered that her daughter had a fixation for wearing mismatched shoes, she could have quietly corrected her little one and helped her into the "right" ones. Instead, this artist, designer, and mom of three started Chooze, a cool shoe line — and possible revolution.
Chooze is a cute and comfy line of mismatched shoes for boys, girls, and even women. Just like fingerprints, no two pair is alike. And each shoe in a pair is different from the other. Blumberg was inspired to start the company in September 2011, when she realized that letting her daughter wear mix-and-match shoes not only lent to her eclectic sense of style, but also inspired her to be herself. Blumberg was so moved by her own daughter’s creativity and sense of individuality, she wanted to share that message.
Her idea was further reinforced as other parents commented that their children also wore different shoes, or that they admired Blumberg for allowing her daughter to express herself in that way. Since first launching Chooze, Blumberg has continued to receive confirmation that she is on to something pretty impactful.
A designer and artist by trade, Blumberg enlisted the help of others to perfect the construction of the shoe. Aside from being adorable, the shoes are made with Memory Foam so they're comfortable. Of course, she is the primary designer for the line, but is proud to note that fabric designer Anna Marie Horner contributed to two of the upcoming season’s designs.
While fashion trending and forecasting are part of Blumberg's inspiration, she said it's really about the kids. “Kids love color,” she said. That notion is definitely reflected in the designs for the upcoming fall season.
The busy mom-preneur said lone trips to the grocery store and pampering trips to the nail salon are few and far between, but she's OK with that. Says Blumberg, “I’m there every day to pick up my kids from school and to spend time in the evenings with them and to make their dinner and do homework. It’s just what’s important to me, so I’m tired.”
She also involves the kids in the business as much as possible. “I engage them in the process, so that they feel that it’s not something that is taking mommy away; it’s something that they get to be a part of,” she said. Her son actually drew one of the characters on one of the shoes for the upcoming fall line.
Chooze is also a social enterprise. At the end of each year, the company will invest funds into micro-finance institutions that provide loans, training, support, and education to women in poverty. “If you help women engage in starting their own businesses and really being able to support themselves, then you help an entire community,” she said.
Pegasus News Content partner - The Assignment Desk, DFW