What’s cute and cuddly and green all over? Our new line of Disney Store baby apparel made with organic cotton, of course! If you haven’t seen it yet, you will be coo-ing and aw-ing at our new spring/summer line that features adorable Minnie, Mickey and Pooh which launched online last Sunday and in stores yesterday!
To kick off Earth Week, I sat down with Associate Merchandise Manager for Softlines, Katie Byrnes, who enthusiastically walked me through the story of how Disney Store baby turned green! She also gave us a behind the scenes peek at one of the designs before it went into production!
Amy: Hi Katie, can you tell us about your involvement with the new baby line?
Katie: I am an associate merchant for our baby line. As an associate merchant I’m like a hub for our baby softlines products- I work with the visual, design, tech, production, allocation, planning teams and I touch everything from art concept and inspiration to making sure the product reaches stores. It isn't a one man show, we are really one big team! I work closely with Anna Weifenbach, Mgr, Merchandise Softlines – Accessories & Baby; Christie Fleischer, Director, Merchandising and all our creative partners to put together the best possible baby assortment for our guests.
A: How did the idea to use organic cotton for baby apparel come about?
K: The way organic cotton came about was the Company's initiative to reduce our carbon footprint. With the majority of the baby assortment offered in cotton, using organic cotton was a natural fit. After talking and planning with the team we were able to find organic cotton that is soft, has great hand feel and that feels great on a baby’s skin. Now, most of the cotton in our baby items in this line is organic cotton!
A: What is organic cotton and where does it come from?
K: Organic cotton is cotton grown by farmers using earth-friendly methods that preserve our planet's natural resources. The cotton is grown in certified organic fields without the use of chemicals and pesticides.
A: Can you tell us more behind this spring/summer’s green line?
K: We have 3 character offerings in our spring/summer assortment: Mickey playing with frogs, Minnie with butterflies and Winnie the Pooh. We created tiny tee coveralls, two-piece sets, stretchies, bodysuits, sleepwear, blankets and even a dress set with Minnie bloomers! You can literally dress your baby from head to toe in Disney Store baby product! What’s great is they all match and can be put together in different combinations as a gift.
Here's a sneak peek at the design of our Minnie dress and bloomers before it was constructed:
A: What kinds of things do you and the team think about when you create a new line for Baby?
K: I think about how to best serve our guests' needs- what will be comfortable on a baby, how it will look on the baby and, most importantly, how easy it will be to change a diaper! I want to ensure we offer an assortment that can be bundled together to make a great gift for a baby shower or bought as great essentials that every baby needs. I love adding unexpected details, too! For example, details like embroidered bumblebees on the back of the girls Pooh Bodysuit. It is really all these little touches and thoughts that go into ensuring we are offering the cutest product imaginable.
A: What is your favorite baby product to give to new Moms?
K: My favorite gift to give is a blanket with a pack of bodysuits and a stretchie!
A: What does organic mean to you personally?
K: Organic means reducing our carbon footprint to ensure we are preserving our natural resources. I believe moving towards organic and sustainable product is both socially responsible and the way of the future.
A: What has been your favorite part about being a merchant?
K: What is most exciting is seeing my vision in real life—seeing it in stores, then on a baby. It’s so rewarding to see someone wearing the product we created!
A: What is the future for Disney Store baby?
K: We are always looking for new ways to be green. We are looking at all our packaging to ensure we are being eco-conscious, too! Organic is definitely the future of our baby products!
Isn't that the truth! Our earth's future begins with the little ones! Stroll (with baby) to your nearest Disney Store or hop onto DisneyStore.com to pick up these cute little eco-friendly outfits for your own bundle of joy or give them as gifts! Don't forget to look for the green circle sticker that says 'Organic Cotton'!