In an attempt to support women who offer high-quality products or services, I plan to spotlight a mom-owned business from time-to-time.
Today, I begin with Cause Haun, the owner and founder of See Kai Run, "a line of baby foot friendly shoes designed for pre and new walkers."
1. How did you go about starting your business? What action steps did you take to get where you are today?
I started the shoe line because I was really looking for comfortable, cool-looking shoes for Kai that he could wear outdoors and didn't see anything in the stores that worked for me. When I first conceived of the idea, I took samples to local boutiques to get feedback. There were several key retailers that were extremely encouraging and were very kind in giving me information. That is how I learned about trade shows and about sales representatives and many other things that helped to start the ball rolling. And, really, once the ball started to roll, it was like a massive snowball that couldn't be stopped! I wish I could say I had a master business plan at the beginning. The truth is that I never expected See Kai Run to become what it is today. I thank my lucky stars (and all the parents, grandparents, and friends who buy my shoes) every day!
2. Do you work from home or out of an office?
I began working from home and ran See Kai Run out of my basement for over a year. We now have an official See Kai Run headquarters. Luckily, though, I still work from home and go into the See Kai Run office once a week.
3. If you work from home, how do you manage working with a little one around? Do you have a nanny or do you work when your children are sleeping or...?
My husband and I both work from home for See Kai Run and take turns caring for our youngest son, Ocean, who is 20 months old. We've been able to make it work by constant prioritizing of who needs to get something done "right now" and who can wait until nap time to complete a task. We also have my mother who watches Ocean once a week. As any parent knows, you become very efficient with a little one around. Having two people is really helpful. It would be so much more difficult without that partnership.
4. Did you already have a background in design/fashion or did you have to learn everything from scratch?
I do not have a background in design or fashion, nor any experience in those fields. I do have an international business degree which possibly made it easier for me to conceptualize the production being done overseas. I did have to learn everything from scratch and I have thoroughly enjoyed it! I love designing the shoes and have had such great satisfaction exploring that creative side of myself. It's certainly been a learning process!
5. How many children do you have and what are their ages?
I have two sons: Kai just turned 5 in October and Ocean is 20 months old.
ABOUT THE SHOES: My daughter has a pair of "Aprils" (pictured) and I always receive compliments on these miniature tennies. They are uber-stylish, but they also are made of high-quality leather (a necessity for anyone's shoes, in my opinion - leather lasts longer and prevents "stinky feet"). They are flexible enough to allow new walkers to experience walking fully, yet they also provide adequate support for on-the-go toddlers. I like the "in-between" aspect of the See Kai Run shoes, because my daughter needs something a little more sturdy than the Robeez-style slipper now that she is constantly outside - stepping over rocks, sticks, and other bumpy terrain.
***See Kai Run shoes are sold online and at select retailers throughout the U.S.