It’s no secret that moms are powerhouses of invention and creative problem-solving. They do it on a daily basis and often in the face of public meltdowns and wild animal-like antics. We’re scoping the scene for new or noteworthy mom-created projects and products that are solving problems, bringing joy and creating lasting memories. Scroll down to see our current faves, and watch for more spotlights on mom-invented gear we love.

photo: Kathy Vegh

Wall of Inspiration: My Heart Wall Custom Photo Wallpaper

After finishing her MBA, Kathy Vegh went back home to Cleveland to work at her father’s business—and she helped it grow it from a small family business to a multi-million dollar company. When her daughter was born with a congenital heart defect and had to undergo open heart surgery shortly after birth, Kathy was inspired to start My Heart Wall. Baby O healed and is doing well, but Kathy wanted to create something that offered commemoration and celebration. My Heart Wall creates and sells photo wallpaper while staying true to its mission to help promote support and advocacy for children born with congenital heart defects. You can customize your wallpaper at their website and learn more about the company at myheartwall.com.

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photo: Julia Wang

Bridge the Generation & Language Gap: Jamma Jango

In 2012, Julia Wang left her job as Product Manager at American Express to be a SAHM to her newborn daughter. Both Julia’s and her husband’s parents emigrated from Taiwan in the 1980’s and are more comfortable speaking in their native tongue—Mandarin Chinese. Julia wanted her little girl to be able to communicate with her grandparents. But she struggled to find the right resources to teach her daughter Chinese—there was a lack of anything that would hold a kid’s attention for more than 5 minutes and it was hard to find a program that was educational and fun. And so, Jamma Jango was born. It’s a  cartoon-based, foreign language-learning product that provides parents fun and educational language resources—all in one box. Currently, Jamma Jango offers a Spanish language and a Mandarin Chinese version.

Check it out at jammajango.com

photo: Lizzy Ellingson

A Mom-Invented Registry: Blueprint Registry

Lizzy Ellingson co-founded Blueprint Registry after experiencing her own frustrations with traditional wedding registries. She wanted a more fun, visual process—and it turns out she wasn't the only one. After having her first baby, she discovered that the baby registry world had the same problems and so she expanded Blueprint's platform into a baby registry with the goal of helping to educate new moms along the way. New parents can not only rest easy knowing Blueprint has the lowest credit card processing fee in the industry, but they can also shop from a visual blueprint of their nursery and add gifts from any retailer to their registry to fit their needs. 

Check it out at blueprintregistry.com

photo: Coral Chung

Luxe Handbags That Last: Coral Chung

As a busy working professional and mom, Coral Chung was tired of non-functioning designer bags that didn’t suit her lifestyle. So she co-founded Senreve, a brand that doesn’t force women to choose between a bag that looks good and one that works well. Within one year of its launch, Senreve’s most popular item—the Maestra bag—has sold out more than six times and has become a staple on the arms of many powerhouse females including Jessica Alba, Sophia Bush, Greta Gurwig and Gabrielle Union.

Shop the lust-worthy collection at senreve.com

The Future of Healthy Food: AccelFoods

Lauren Jupiter and Jordan Gaspar started AccelFoods to help smaller innovative food startups make it to mainstream, with a specific mission—insure a healthier future of food. They raised the $40M venture fund in just four years and have helped over 30 brands like Kidfresh (all-natural kids meals with hidden veggies), Rethink Water (kid-friendly flavored boxed water), and Brami (plant-based protein snacks) grow their businesses. Not only are these moms inventors and entrepreneurs, they’re helping other moms find success as well.

Check it out at accelfoods.com

 

photo: Nancy Yen

Picky Eater Solution: OmieBox

Nancy Yen has over 15 years of experience bringing game-changing new products to market, with a focus in the kids and baby space. At Gap Inc. Nancy did merchandising and consumer insights, as well as supported the development of new store concepts (BabyGap Home). With an MBA from Stanford Business School, it’s no secret that she’s a savvy businesswoman. But when her own son, was a picky eater and underweight, she came up with possibly her best business idea yet! Searching for a lunchbox that could hold both hot and cold foods, she found there was nothing on the market—and OmieBox was born. It’s an innovative Bento-style food container that features separate temperature zones! You can find OmieBox at Amazon.com and the OmieLife website.

Shop for one here: omielife.com

 

photo: Gail Eldvidge

Sweet Success: Vermont Nut Free Chocolates

In 1998, Gail Elvidge co-founded Vermont Nut Free Chocolates after her son was diagnosed with a life-threatening nut allergy. It was difficult for her to find nut-free baking products, chocolates, sweets, and products, so she and her husband Mark started the company to help families like theirs! What started as a small chocolate company in Vermont, has grown to nearly 40 employees, offering products like trail mix, gift baskets, fudge, truffles, baking essentials, hot cocoa, and much more.  The company is proud to offer 100% peanut and tree nut free gourmet chocolates and products for those with or without allergies to enjoy.

Check out their yummy selection at vermontnutfree.com

Love Conquers All: Love Powered Littles

Toronto moms Anna Lozano and Lindy Sood started Love Powered Co. in 2017 with the goal of improving the lives of families. After successful business careers, both moms wanted to achieve a better work-life balance, and also create positive change in the world using tools for mindfulness and compassion. They just debuted the Love Powered Littles Box Set, a set of 22 affirmation cards to help children affirm their own greatness—I am loved, I am compassionate, I am kind—and six bonus cards to help parents in this positive journey. These cards reaffirm children’s natural brilliance, power, compassion and strength. And we are betting they are going to be healing for parents too.

Online: lovepoweredco.com

photo: AWE

Blood, Sweat & Tears: AWE

When you are a three-time cancer survivor and working mother, the word strong doesn’t even begin to describe you. Jill Johnson is all of those things, and she’s also an entrepreneur whose successful jewelry business, Jilco, has been donating to organizations like Children’s Cancer Research Fund since 1989. But true to her tireless spirit, Jill wanted to create something more, and AWE was born. AWE is a jewelry company that honors and celebrates individual’s triumphs, and the AWE Medallion has become a universal symbol of strength, hope and resilience. The design, which is the anchor of all the items, is four teardrops that represent blood, sweat and tears (of sorrow and joy) of every survivor’s journey. 20% of every sale goes to one of four national charities.

Online: aweinspired.com

Keep It Chic AND Cozy: Birdies

What if you could go full-on leisure but still look stylish (and we’re not talking about pajama jeans)? Two moms, Bianca Gates (CEO & Co-Founder) and Marisa Sharkey (President and Co-Founder), figured out how! Together they founded Birdies, luxe, cozy slippers that are big on style. When they couldn’t find slippers that merged comfort and fashion, they decided to create their own. Not only do they come in beautiful designs with on-trend colors and features like tassels and leopard print, they’ve also got cushioned, latex insoles; are lined with satin or faux shearling;  and rubber soles for indoor/outdoor wear. Uh, pretty much perfect!

Online: birdiesslipers.com

photo: Jennifer Holland

The Aha Moment: Throat Scope

Jennifer Holland had her “aha!” moment at the doctor’s office with her young son. It led her to create Throat Scope—the world's first illuminated tongue depressor that lights up the entire throat and mouth. Her invention is not only popular, in 2017 it won silver at the Edison Awards in New York for her innovation. This mama always dreamed of inventing something that would make the world a better place and she’s achieved that goal: she’s on a mission to educate families on how to recognize the signs of oral cancer or detect a sore throat, strep throat, thrush, inflamed gums and tooth pain. The stay-at-home mom’s innovative product is now available in 140 countries.

Online: throatscope.com

photo: Leslie Pierson

Turning Chaos into Beauty: GoodHangups

Leslie Pierson created something every mom has dreamed of: a product that brings order to the chaos. Her inspiration? The prolific creativity of her artistic 6-year-old son. Like so many moms, she hated the idea of throwing away her son’s masterpieces but was tired of the mess they made on the fridge. So she invented GoodHangups. GoodHangups MagnaStickers can be used on almost any wall surface to hang up unframed items: without a hammer, a nail or a frame! If this product seems familiar, you may have caught Leslie on Shark Tank (where she scored a deal with Lori Greiner).

Online: goodhangups.com

photo: Kelly Carroll

Read On: Literati Book Club

Problem: Parents want their kids to have exposure to new and engaging books, but with so many new releases and busy, busy lives, they don’t always know what to choose (or have time to choose them). Solution: Literati Book Club, a subscription book service founded by two busy moms who wanted to make sure kids could get vetted, awesome new books delivered right to their door. Kelly Carroll teamed up with Jessica Ewing and started Literati Book Club. Literati works a bit like Stitch Fix, for books. They work with top-educators and librarians to hand-pick five beautiful new books every month with a fun theme (science, friendship, adventure, history, etc.). You just select the book club based on your kids age and development (up to 9 years old) and the books come each month. You have a week to read them, decide what you want to keep, and send the rest back. You are only charged for the ones you keep.  We love Literati so much we recommended it in our gift guide this year.

Online: literatibooks.com

photo: Cheeky Chompers

Multi Use Baby Gear: Cheeky Chompers

Julie Wilson and Amy Livingston founded Cheeky Chompers while on maternity leave after their first babies were born. They noticed a gap in the market for a teether that attached to a baby and that’s when the innovative Neckerchew was born! What’s a Neckerchew? It’s a highly absorbent, reversible cotton dribble bib with a silicone teether integrated right into the design. After the success of the Neckerchew, they went on to invent the Comfortchew, Chewy the attachable sensory hippo teether, the Cheeky Blanket, the organic MultiMuslin (it’s a nursing cover, stroller cover, teether, burp cloth, swaddle and blanket all in one) and the Muslin Comforter. These two mamas and their innovative thinking are streamlining the world of  baby gear.

Online: cheekychompersus.com

photo: Ritual

In Health We Trust: Ritual Supplements

Kat Schneider wanted to do the right thing for her health and her baby, so when she found out she was pregnant she started taking prenatal vitamins. That’s when she noticed that many supplements had questionable ingredients, and worse, the ones she was taking didn’t even list the ingredients. So she decided to found Ritual: subscription-based supplements delivered directly to your door, each month. They are all non-GMO,  vegan, gluten and soy free and all are designed exclusively for women, with clear ingredients lists so you always know what you are putting in your body.

Online: ritual.com

photo: TWELVELittle

Not Your Mother’s Diaper Bag: TWELVElittle

When TWELVElittle baby bags came on the scene, new moms everywhere sighed with relief. Stylish, practical (read: wipeable) diaper bags and accessories that feel designer-worthy without the outrageous price tag. Mom and designer Julia Min founded TWELVElittle to simplify and elevate new mom style. And she's succeeded! In addition to diaper bags and backpacks that you'll be toting around long after they are potty-trained, they also make backpacks for kids, smaller bags for storage (we love this striped bag trio) and the popular 12 LITTLE WONDERS dangles, inspired by the Chinese zodiac and made to customize any bag. 

Online: twelvelittle.com

photo: Helen Anderson/Milkies

Waste Not, Want Not: Milkies

For any mom who has ever pumped for their nursing babes,  you know how precious every drop can be. When her son Henry was born in 2008, Helen Anderson was working as an ER nurse and still breastfeeding. So she came up with a business, Milkies, and a product to help save time and make sure not a drop of the liquid gold was lost: Milk-Saver. The Milk-Saver collects the milk that leaks in between nursing or pumping (you know what we mean).

Online: mymilkies.com

photo: Phil Hossack/Winnipeg Free Press

Bottoms Up: Olen Cosmetics

Baby Butz diaper cream creator Majda Ficko’s son Demitri was born 15 years ago with a rare condition called Cornelia de Lange syndrome, leaving him severely disabled and has been in diapers 24-hours a day. “Demitri spent the first three years of his life in and out of hospital and a pharmacist there had formulated a skin cream for him,” says Ficko, a mother of three. “But when the pharmacy closed, the cream was no longer available and I was at the mercy of whatever diaper creams were on the market, none of which worked and are packed with harsh chemicals.” So she decided to create it herself. Flicko, is now the owner of Olen Cosmetics, manufacturer and distributor of Baby Butz and other natural hair and body care products. It’s certified all-natural product, which is gluten and paraben-free and never tested on animals!  

Online: olencosmetics.com

Superfoods for Everyday Babes: Raised Real

When Dietician Dr. Michelle Davenport became a first-time mom she wanted to find (and make) easy, simple meals for her new eater that were big on nutrition and hadn’t sat on a shelf for months (or years). So, she co-founded Raised Real, a subscription-based meal service designed specifically for growing babes. She uses superfoods and nutritional expertise to create each recipe, and the meals arrive ready to go. Each recipe integrates fruits, veggies and micronutrients that are crucial for a child’s early development. Just steam them in Raised Real’s Meal Maker Machine and you’re good to go.

Online: raisedreal.com

photo: Kaleido Concepts

For Moms on the Go: Kaleido Concepts

“As people who love to travel and are always on-the-go with our kids in tow, we became frustrated with the dull, inflexible carrying options available to us,” said Lisa Hom, co-founder of Kaleido Concepts. So she and Anita Yuen invented something new: an origami-inspired line of transportable products—backpacks and totes—that are as attractive as they are efficient. Hom, previously the CEO of Parasol Co. and the VP of Product Design at Kiwi Co. and Yuen, Product Director at Google, make an impressive team. But more impressive are the little extras: the products are lightweight (most only way a few ounces), durable, can be folded into a pouch and tucked away, have ripstop fabric and YKK Zippers. Plus they work with artists: Ashley Goldberg, Kelly Ventura and Carolyn Suzuki have all come up with unique designs (Pink Breeze, Black Swan and Naval Tidal). Currently in Kickstarter as of Sep. 18, find out more about the stylish designs and crowdfund the one you want! And follow them on Instagram for updates and product info.

Online: kaleidoconcepts.com

photo: Julie Bombacino

Necessity Is the Mother of Invention: Real Food Blends

When Julie Bombacino, an Indiana mom of two, found out that her 6-month old baby boy—AJ—would need a feeding tube for the rest of her life, she didn’t just sit idle. She began researching and discovered quickly that nearly half-a-million people in the US alone rely on feeding tubes. The tube formulas made her son very sick, and Bombacino knew there had to be a better way. With the determination that only a mother can have, she began to experiment with real foods, pureeing things like carrots, chicken and sweet potatoes, to put in his tube. It wasn’t long before AJ stopped vomiting and began to improve. That’s when Bombacino knew she could not only help her son, but thousands of people like him, and Real Food Blends was born. Designed for people with a feeding tube, Real Food Blends comes in four flavors and each one has just five to eight ingredients. There are no preservatives, corn syrup, dairy, soy or nuts. Not only is it made and manufactured in the US, it is covered by home health companies and insurance companies.

Online: realfoodblends.com

photo: NextDesk

The Working Parent's Bestie: XDesk

Just months after co-founder of XDesk, Jamie Fertsch, left her stable job in wealth management to launch her company, she discovered she was pregnant, with twins. So Jamie called on her support system of family and friends to help her keep her company growing while juggling motherhood. It’s worked! In its second year, XDesk (then NextDesk) experienced an incredible 600% growth in demand for its motorized standing desks! These standing and flexible desks are the perfect fit for work-from-home and communal office spaces. XDesk products are all handcrafted in Austin, Texas by dedicated artisans, too, so you get quality with all that flexibility.

Online: xdesk.com 

photo: Cheeky Baby

Kitchen Concept: Cheeky Baby

We’re pretty sure that Ayesha Curry doesn’t sleep. Not only is she a mother of two beautiful kiddos and wife of Golden State all-star Stephen Curry, she’s a cookbook author, hosts her own show on the Food Network, Ayesha’s Homemade, and is co-founder of the recently launched Cheeky Baby. Partnered with Cheeky Kids, this  line of reusable, high-quality plastic and silicone dinnerware products are designed just with little ones in mind. They help foster independence at meal-time with trainer and sippy cups, feeding spoons, traditional baby cutlery, and even a line of self-feeding cutlery; non-slip bowls and more, all with whimsical-but-chic patterns and animal characters. And if you need one more reason to love this woman, for every Cheeky Baby item purchased, a meal will be donated to a child in need through No Kid Hungry.

Online: cheekybaby.com

photo: Ice Cream Castles

Keeping It Cute: Ice Cream Castles

Founded by two women—Veronique Vicari Barnes and Wells Nathan—who have years of friendship and creative collaboration between them, once they both had children they started thinking about what was lacking in the marketplace. They decided to design a line of clothing that they would want their own children to wear and Ice Cream Castles was born. Wells, with a  FIDM and RISD fashion design background, had previously launched a women’s clothing line, and Veronique is the founder of her own line of jewelry. Together, they capture vintage designs, magical elements and plenty of whimsy in their clothing line for kids. The Fall 2017 collection includes retro ski style mixed with sweet graphics, all in comfy styles and designs. Our only question: when will they come in grown-up sizes? 

Online: icecreamcastles.com

photo: FinnBin

A New Tradition: The Finnbin

Catherine Merritt has been a long-time support of moms: she’s the genius behind MUMZY, the first and only crowdfunding platform for moms. Catherine sold MUMZY last year and is on to her newest venture, Finnbin. Co-founded with Shawn Bercuson (entrepreneur and superdad), Finnbin brings the Finnish tradition to the U.S. for the first time ever. What is a Finnbin? It’s a cardboard box full of newborn items, including bibs, bedding, clothing, a swaddle, bath essential and more. The best part? The box can actually be used as baby’s first bed. Don’t believe us? The Finns have been doing this for more than 80 years! We love these self-contained boxes that pair down the clutter and focus on what you need for you new arrival, so you can focus on baby! “To play a role in providing the peace of mind to new parents is such an incredible feeling as an entrepreneur and a fellow mom,” says Catherine.

Online: finnbin.com

photo: RunLites

Lighting It Up: RunLites

Invented by an avid runner and working mother of three, Mary Tiffin created RunLites gloves and mittens because (like so many moms) she did most of her running and exercising at night and was frustrated by inefficient flashlights and headlamps. These gloves with built-in, rechargable LED lights are comfortable, easy-to-wear and perfect for illuminating your path as you need it (and are also killer for helping you find stuff in the bottom of your giant purse). They are easy to spot and increase visibility dramatically. Tiffin also  discovered that a glove with a built in light added to her children’s visibility when walking at night or when waiting for the bus stop on winter mornings when it was still dark. They come in fingerless and full-gloved styles as well as mitten (and even a sling model for hotter months) and run from XS to larger sizes for adults and they even have a little pocket for you slide in cash and keys. (We found the XS was a good fit for a child around 5 or 6, but it does depend on the size of your kiddo.) Prices range from $24.95 and up.

Online: gorunlites.com

photo: Mighty Bright

Empowering Kids: Mighty + Bright

When Northern California mom Sara Olsher went through a divorce, she felt like she was grasping at straws to help her daughter understand her new life and routine. With her background in psychology and illustration, Sara was set out to create a visual tool to help her kiddo adjust to the new home and new schedule. Her first product was an interactive magnetic calendar with custom magnets for the whole family and their activities, including the custody schedule, which allows families to easily explain their complicated schedules to little ones and helps reduce children’s anxiety. Once Sara realized how many other families could benefit from what she'd created, she launched Mighty + Bright, a company that seeks to empower families as they cope with divorce. There are now three versions of The Co-Parenting Calendar (daily, weekly and monthly) as well as a Routine Chart. Magnet and Chart sets start at $27.

Online: mightyandbright

photo: Chooze

A Mismatch Made in Heaven: Chooze Shoes

Sharon Blumberg, the mommy brain behind Chooze, always loved and embraced her young daughter’s creativity, especially when it came to fashion. And her kiddos signature look? Mismatched shoes. But the wearing of two different shoes can create balance issues and discomfort, which is why Sharon, along with her husband Marc, launched Chooze—a company that sells perfectly mismatched shoes! Since their launch in 2011, they have expanded to include clothing and accessories for kids, too, but their genius shoes are still the signature look. Sandals, sneakers, boots and more in a huge variety of colorful and whimsical patterns will delight your kiddos. You can also “chooze” your cause when shopping: they’ll donate a portion of all profits to one of five charities you can select from on the site.

Online: choozeshoes.com

photo: easyGokids

Step to Success: easyGokids

Inventor and mom Wendi Cooper will be the first to tell you: kids with dangling feet while going to the bathroom face a host of issues including pain and discomfort. Not to mention that many children experience constipation and without proper toilet posture, this can go from bad to worse. From numbness to difficulty pushing and strain, Wendi knew there was a better way and she knew she wanted to help. While there are plenty of bathroom footstools out there, this is the first of its kind to fit right up against any toilet and easily tucks away when not in use so it never gets in the way. It comes in a four different colors and takes up barely any room compared to other clunky stools. It is “compact, cool and discreet.”  Your kiddos can sit with proper toilet posture and relax, every time, just like nature intended. Retail price start at $26.99.

Online: easyGokids.com

photo: Eli & Nooli

Taking a Bite: Elli & Nooli

Maya Shalev, founder of Elli & Nooli is a problem solver. As a busy lawyer, mediator and mother of three, she experienced all of the typical frustrations of parenting, including watching her little one repeatedly not be able to hold on to the spoon when trying to self-feed. And so, she invented a better product: Grabease ($9.99-$14.99), available on Amazon. These adorable fork and spoon sets are squat enough that tiny hands can grasp and control with ease, plus they are safer than regular "toddler" flatware: the handle is ergonomically designed and there's a choke barrier. It comes in four colors (dark gray, teal, orange and white) and you can even grab a handy carrying pouch that tucks into your diaper bag or purse. The best part? It helps them develop motor skills right before your eyes. BPA free. Elli & Nooli also sell the PadiBlanket, a swaddle-like blanket that fits into a car seat (with holes for the straps) and the RecordablePal, an adorable plush owl you can record into which plays for up to 30 minutes and helps sooth littles back to sleep.

Online: elliandnooli.com

photo: Savor

Library Lifestyle: Keepsake Box

You love all the notes and stick-figure drawings, but it doesn’t take long for paper to take over  your house. That’s why moms Karla “neatnick” the Losen and Jennifer organization queen”  McAllister-Nevins got together and invented The Keepsake Box, designed to help you keep treasures and cull the chaos. There are two versions: The Library: Baby Keepsake Box and The Library: School Years Keepsake Box. Each box includes a handcrafted, book cloth case; pre-categorized labels; 9 drawers for tiny things and 8 vertical files (baby version) or 16 vertical files (school years); a birthday survey for yearly highlights and more. It’s like scrapbooking without…the scrapbooking. Everything is contained, sleek and easy to browse through so you can walk down memory lane anytime. As an added bonus, they look cute on the shelf. Stop shoving those things in a bin and start organizing your treasures! Prices start at $69.95.

Online: savor.us

photo: Primary

Back to the Basics: Primary Clothing

Founded by two moms—Galyn Bernard and Christina Carbonell—who braved kids clothing shopping for more than 12 years and had grown beyond frustrated by the poor quality, slogan- and sequin-heavy options out there. They wanted the basics in bright colors at affordable prices and they knew other parents did too. Both veterans employees of Diapers.com, the two have created a brand that is both recognizable and classic, bright basics that have been rated highly by moms around the world. Primary is an excellent clothing line for kids on the autism-spectrum or kids with sensory sensitivities: you will not get a box full of itchy, ill-fitting items that your kid won’t wear. Most recently, they've launched a line of cozy PJs that are comfy for sleep and so soft, you'll wish they came in your size! 

Online: primary.com

Love Conquers All: Love Powered Littles

Toronto moms Anna Lozano and Lindy Sood started Love Powered Co. in 2017 with the goal of improving the lives of families. After successful business careers, both moms wanted to achieve a better work-life balance, and also create positive change in the world using tools for mindfulness and compassion. They just debuted the Love Powered Littles Box Set, a set of 22 affirmation cards to help children affirm their own greatness—I am loved, I am compassionate, I am kind—and six bonus cards to help parents in this positive journey. These cards reaffirm children’s natural brilliance, power, compassion and strength. And we are betting they are going to be healing for parents too.

Online: lovepoweredco.com

—Amber Guetebier

All photos provided by companies 

 

mom-invented products