Crowded streets on W72nd Street today, a typical weekend in New York City. Yes - that's a Skip Hop parent!
Skip Hop was founded with the urban parent in mind. When we’re talking about the company and our products we tend to say that a lot. Sometimes you say a phrase so often the words lose their meaning and the word "urban parent" can take on that quality for me. When we do trade shows and I'm telling people the Skip Hop story repeatedly, the words "urban parent" come out of my mouth but it happens now almost without thinking.
But we don’t say it because it sounds cool. As New York City parents ourselves, Ellen and I think about products and the brand as a part of the way we live here. And it IS a different sort of life.
One of the huge differences here is that we rarely drive. New Yorkers really do walk everywhere. It’s hard for most people in the USA to imagine life without a car, but it’s hard for us to imagine a life where you have to drive to get the basic things you need. This is the way it is for most New Yorkers – you rarely live more than a block from life’s necessities and strolling for a mile or two every day is just what we do.
We were reminded of New Yorkers' love of walking today – it’s been an extremely cold March so far and today was the first warm-ish day of the month and the streets were packed! We live uptown where it’s mostly residential, and the sidewalks were as crowded as Fifth Avenue in mid-December. This means strollers everywhere – one, two or even three abreast This is the sort of urban parenting lifestyle we're accustomed to and what we mean when we say "urban parent." And that makes it obvious why we created a stroller bag first. New NYC parents push their strollers everywhere!
The other big difference here is that we adapt to much smaller living spaces than people who live in other parts of the country. Although not every family living in New York lives in an apartment, many of us are raising families this way and let me tell you, space is at a premium. That's why you’ll repeatedly see us designing products that save space. It’s not only that we think it’s more functional. It’s just what we live!
posted by Michael Diamant