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Opening the door for ambitious moms


West Linn business Flourish helps market innovative products

by: REVIEW, TIDINGS PHOTO: CLIFF NEWELL - Shelley Straitiff displays just a few of the many products that her new company Flourish is now making available.Stay-at-home mothers like to stay at home and raise their kids. But they also want to get ahead.

Flourish, a new company founded by Shelley Straitiff of West Linn, helps them accomplish that objective.

“Moms can still have their family life and money too,” said Straitiff, who started her company last November after putting in a year of preparation. “We’re creating our own little economy. A ‘mom-economy.’ It’s amazing how many moms want to be involved.”

A mother of two children, Straitiff was in the same dilemma that she now wants ambitious mothers to escape. She wanted to raise her children, but that was costing her opportunities, including a high-paying job with Intel. She found that there were 200 mom inventors on Facebook who had invested $25,000 to $50,000, even up to $500,000.

“They couldn’t get their products on shelves,” Straitiff said. “That was not how the system works. They would get a great idea that they couldn’t get into stores.”

This situation caused a light bulb to go off in Straitiff’s brain and the result is Flourish. She would invent a new kind of direct sales company, bypassing the retail stores, that would provide mothers the flexibility to balance family life with economic advancement.

Flourish now offers 20 mom- and baby-friendly products that are sold through home parties, just like Tupperware or Avon. To promote this concept, Straitiff has developed a catalog called “Solutions by Moms, for Moms.” It can be enlightening to read about products like Happi Tummi, Placi-Plushes, Sticky Bellies, Diaper Buds, Bandettes, Paci Bungee, Kidzikoo, HippMAMA and many more.

All of the products are designed to make children happier, cleaner and safer as well as save time for their mothers — plus put cash in their bank accounts.

“We sell stuff you want and need and can start using the day you get it,” Straitiff said. “You just purchase a $99 kit from us and start selling. There’s less risk involved.”

Straitiff’s idea really struck a chord with a mother of nine children who developed a whole line of color-coded products.

One reason Straitiff is so optimistic is that she has just hired a sales director with experience in direct sales. There are also a large number of moms in West Linn who run their own small businesses.

Flourish has a simple, attractive idea on how to sell an innovative product: A Flourish mom uses a Flourish product in public. Another mom sees it and wants to buy it.

Straitiff is convinced her company has the potential to go national.

“It has taken a while to set up this company, but it has also been very rewarding,” Straitiff said. “Moms no longer have to put their life savings in a product that can never be sold.”

Instead, with Flourish, Straitiff will bring ideas to life.

For more information, visit momsflourish.com.