1. When did Baby Steps Book first get started, and what inspired you to create this online business?
Baby Steps Book started when the creator, Sivan, needed a baby shower gift for an expecting friend. The friend was a single mom. Sivan wanted to get a baby memory book as a gift, but found that all the books refer to "Parents" and "Mom and Dad,"--and the friend was not interested in having any involvement from the paternal father in the baby's life. She wasn't happy with what was out there. The products she found were outdated in style or too expensive, and very importantly, didn't fit the family type appropriate for her friend. So she decided to create her own book, and called it Baby Steps Book! And this is how it all started.
In a small apartment in Los Angeles, California, Sivan, being a graphic designer by trade and an avid scrapbook crafter, decided to create a unique book for the friend. She removed all mentioning of the paternal father from the book and put an emphasis on the single mom. The mom LOVED the result. Sivan decided that she wanted to try and sell the books and see if other single parent families would be interested. After a few months of working on the content of the book, she contacted her brother, Mori, who is a product designer by trade, and they worked together in creating the binding for the book. Selecting strong and durable materials, 100% cotton fabrics, non bleached paper and other non toxic products, they crafted the first few books and started selling them online and Baby Steps Book was born.
After a while, Mori realized that they could also support a very important issue that they both care about, which is marriage equality and human rights. Sivan and Mori then started crafting and designing books for ALL families: single parent, LGBT (same sex), adopting, and surrogate parents, for example. They felt that this is an important issue to support, and they worked with those communities to evolve the content and cater to that niche that was not being served fairly, they thought. They once said, "We hope to help and support many families that don't fit the 'standard mold,' to find a way to share their dreams, experiences, and love with their friends and family. Our goal is to have a memory book for every family type out there in the world! Not just the ones that some think is the 'standard' family. Family is about loving each other and investing that love. There is no 'standard' when it comes to loving. This comes from our belief that EVERY person that is able and wants to bring a new life to this world should have the opportunity to do so. We are just trying to make it more pleasant and inclusive."
2. Would you tell us more about the handmade aspects of your books?
Every book is made by hand. Every binding is a handcrafted, unique book. Every fabric cover is cut by hand and has two caring hands making it from A to Z. It has recyclable, cardboard based front and back covers that are wrapped with 100% cotton fabrics with different patterns to suit the customers' requests. Every book has the baby's name on the front cover, custom-printed per each customer's request. There are many optional pages you can add to the book, based on your needs: there are pages to add information about the sister, brother of the baby, the pets of the house, the donor if there is one, and many more that create a unique and very personal book for each individual family. If you are interested in a page design that doesn't exist, you can request that they design one JUST for you. Very personal service.
3. What's some of the feedback you've received from your customers so far?
Our customers love the fact that they can create a unique, original, and inclusive book. Many customers love the fact that you can change the names of the parents from Mom/Dad to Mum, Dada, Papi, Mama, and so on. We create every family member page per order. Our Australian and British parents LOVE that feature :)!
4. How do you come up with the different designs for your books?
Between Sivan and Mori, there is so much design experience that we have a lot more ideas in our heads than we can actually execute. We also have different tastes so it serves us greatly. Sivan is into the "cute and cuddly," and Mori has more of a Bauhaus, contemporary taste. Together we make a great and diverse team.
5. Do you have plans to expand to other items in addition to baby books in the future?
We are also creating, based on the same materials, baby shower books, that are great to record the moments before the birth and the great support of friends and family. We plan to continue and create great content for new families. If there is a need, we will discuss how we can help and create a solution for it. We constantly create new designs and new content. It is evolving as fast as the evolution of our society and family structures.
Thanks, Mori and Sivan!