The learning curve of new parenthood is steep, the stakes feel high, and you have to quickly absorb what symbols and signs to look for — such as the bold red tag with asterisks from Skip Hop. The parenting company has managed to turn everyday products into functional and fashionable tools. To a new mom, they immediately offer assurance. I don’t have to check with friends or do extra research to know that co-founder and mom Ellen Diamant has my back every time. — SuChin Pak
You’re celebrating ten years! Looking back, what is your biggest professional milestone?
I would say it’s how our company has grown to be a worldwide consumer brand. We started with our first idea — the duo diaper bag — and have expanded into categories such as toys, nursery, and toddler, and we are all over the word! It’s pretty amazing to travel to different countries and see parents using Skip Hop products.
What is the product that means the most to you?
Our first (and still best-selling) product, the duo diaper bag. We were NYC parents looking to find a fashionable, functional bag that could attach to our stroller. There were no well-designed modern bags on the market, so we decided to create our own. And that was the start of Skip Hop. At the time we had never manufactured anything. This taught me that when you want to learn a skill, you just need to dive in and be passionate.
You got hit by “Whoa, I’m a parent” when?
My son said “Mama” for the first time. It changed everything. Being a parent is still the most important thing to me — and my greatest accomplishment.
Advice for the kidless: Cherish your time together, hit all the hotspots now, and sleep in as late as you possibly can.
What is something you learned from watching other parents?
One of my friends has a favorite saying that she used to tell her toddler: “You get what you get and you don’t get upset.” I love this. It worked great in the early days. It’s getting harder telling this to a tween. We might need to adopt a new saying.
The best thing about being a parent: Seeing your child proud of his accomplishments.
The worst thing about being a parent: Fighting about screen time. This is harder than negotiating with any retailer or factory.
Don’t forget: To plan date nights. We love trying new foods and the latest restaurants — this can be a great hobby living in New York City.
“Kid” snack you buy for yourself: Red Vines. Love them.
Can’t live without: Advance episodes of BBC dramas Downton Abbey and Call the Midwife.
Diet Coke, coffee, or green tea: Iced coffee.
Bookmarks: Pinterest, Apartment Therapy, and, of course, DailyCandy.
Organization tool: The Things app. And keeping an Outlook calendar for you and your kids — it will keep you sane.
Bedtime read: Our new book in partnership with Scholastic, Who’s Hiding. At the end of the day it’s the longest book I have energy for.
Photos: Niki Dankner & Stephania Stanley / DailyCandy