Friday, February 23, 2007

Liliputians NYC

Meet Heather Flottmann, the designer and owner of Liliputians NYC, a hip, indie clothing label specializing in custom, boutique childrens clothes. Her delightful line of handcrafted items reflects her love of bright colors, vintage design, art, and whimsical themes. In addition, all her creations are heirloom quality, limited editions or even one of a kind.

From Lily to Liliputian
“The concept for the liliputians label was born in NYC on May 12, 2004 with the arrival of my[daughter] Lily Belle. She is the inspiration, and she is my muse. Liliputians became a reality about a year later with the completion of the liliputians NYC web site,”
”Liliputians NYC started as a part-time venture, but is becoming more and more of a full-time proposition; something that I’m striving for and welcoming.”

A Balancing Act
“I’m a proud parent of a 2-1/2 year old girl, Lily. Running a home-based business has been the perfect solution although sometimes a very delicate balance. The bulk of my work is done during nap time and late at night when she’s sleeping. Fortunately I’m able to do much of my web maintenance while watching my daughter since my ibook is portable.”

“My business is rapidly growing, but my responsibilities as a parent stay the same. I have to do more work in the same amount of time. Lily starts Montessori school next fall so that will help considerably, giving me more time to devote to my business.”

Knowing Your Customers
“My customers are typically mothers of small children or grandmothers. There are exceptions to this though, as I also sell women’s clothing. I sell to people all over the world, although the majority of my sales are to the US and Canada.”

“As a children’s clothing designer, I’m always particularly observant of the clothes children are wearing at the playground, what’s in boutiques, what items are getting included in magazines, etc. I also spend a lot of time looking at forums, parenting/children’s magazines and web sites, and do see what the competitors are doing to make sure I’m in line with the current fashion scene yet still offering something unique.”

When Time is of the Essence
“Time management is the biggest challenge and doing everything myself. I do all the web maintenance, ads, pr, design, photography, etc. It can sometimes be overwhelming, but I’ve found that organization and sticking to a schedule helps. A sense of humor comes in handy too!”

Advertising an Online Business
“Since liputians is an online business, my advertising has essentially all been online. I run ads on websites that target my audience as well as actively pursue getting reviewed on suitable web sites.”

“I educated myself about SEO for my website to get top ranking in search engines, have swapped links with other indie businesses I like, liliputians is included on a few top site lists, and I’m constantly looking for free review opportunities.”

Generating A Buzz
“Liliputians submits press releases about 2-3 times a year when we offer a new collection or have news that is worthy of issuing one. I also contact editors for product inclusion or reviews on web sites and for print.”

“At this point I do all of my own press work, but I’m reaching a point where it’s just too much for me to keep up with with everything else. I would love to hire an outside press PR firm. I’m particularly impressed with 32Flavors PR and would love to hire them to help get my business to the next level.”

Family Inspiration
“My daughter Lily is my inspiration and muse. I create things that reflect my interests and tastes and know she will like too.”

“My parents [also] inspire me as they work from home long-distance for a company and have created a niche for themselves in their field and have had great success doing something they enjoy.”

Recommended Business Resources
“There isn’t a particular book I would recommend, but would tell other small business owners to utilize the internet. There is a wealth of free information! I subscribe to a couple of newsletters for web maintance/html/java tips and SEO. I’ve gone online for answers about taxes, business paperwork, and other things.”

Words of Advice
“Do something you love since it will take a tremendous effort to get your business started.”



Heather Flottmann
Liliputians NYC


liliputians NYC said...

Thanks so much for the inclusion on your site. I'm so flattered and hope that the interview can help other indie entreprenuers.

Heather said...

I'm honored to have you as one of my interviewees. You have built a wonderful business and I wish you continued success!