Welcome to On Small Business’s series spotlighting interesting crowdfunding campaigns. Every week, we’ll feature a new company or individual attempting to raise money through these new online portals.
Who: Taryn Tuss, 35, a former White House spokeswoman on environmental issues, who now works as a communications consultant in Washington. She co-founded Bub Baby with her sister-in-law, Jennifer Deluzio, 44, late least year.
What: Less Mess, a waterproof changing pad cover that can be easily wiped clean.
Where: Northwest Washington.
Raised: $1,985 (as of Jan. 21) of a $3,500 goal. The campaign began Jan. 4 and goes through Feb. 3.
What’s the pitch?
Sometime after having her second child, Jennifer Deluzio grew tired of washing her changing pad cover almost every time she changed her baby’s diaper. No matter how careful she was, the cloth cover seemed to get dirty several times a day.
Then she had a thought: Why wasn’t there an easier way? When she couldn’t find the type of waterproof, easily wipe-able cover she was looking for, she decided to make one.
The top half of the patented cover, where the baby’s head would go, is made of a plush, machine-washable fabric. The bottom half, where the diaper gets changed, is made of a leather-like material that can easily be wiped off. The cover doesn’t contain PVC, lead or other harmful chemicals, and fits all standard-sized changing pads.
How did you make the leap to manufacturing and selling these covers?
Deluzio started by giving the cover to friends and family. When her sister-in-law, Taryn Tuss, was pregnant, Deluzio gave her a cover, too.
Tuss was enamored: “I realized just how great this product was,” she said. “It’s exactly the kind of thing I needed in my nursery.”
Tuss joined forces with Deluzio and, in September, they registered their company, Bub Baby.
So far, 23 people have backed the duo’s Kickstarter campaign, where a $35 donation gets you one cover (a discount on the $41.99 retail price). Their goal, Tuss says, is to raise $3,500, which will help cover manufacturing costs for about 500 covers.
What’s next for the company?
Tuss says she and Deluzio plan to create a number of other non-toxic products for babies. They’re not sure exactly what those products will be just yet, but Tuss says it is important to her that they be made of natural, baby-safe materials.
“Parents are desperate to find brands they can trust,” said Tuss, a former White House spokeswoman for environmental issues. “I was appalled by the chemicals I saw listed in something as simple as baby shampoo.”
Editor’s note: Our coverage in this series does not constitute an endorsement. For more information about crowdfunding, please check out this SEC Fact Sheet.