WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP ─ The idea started from trying to solve an issue in her life ─ finding the kids' socks or gloves that seemingly always got misplaced.
As parents of eight children, Washington Township residents Tabitha McDonald and her husband, Zachary, understand how the problem can bother moms and dads.
Tabitha said a few years ago, they lost the socks of their youngest son Carson, then less than 12 months old, at a Thanksgiving dinner. Frustrated by the fact the same thing happens all the time, Zachary came up with the idea of putting snaps on the baby’s pants and socks so that he couldn’t kick them off.
The McDonalds improved the design over the years and started Snap-It-Baby online in March. The clothing line sells clothes for infants to age five, Tabitha said. Every shirt can be snapped with baby mittens or gloves. Parents can also snap pants with socks.
It was so nice not to lose the socks, Tabitha said, even in a washer or the car. The owners are applying for a patent for the design.
“I wanted to make everybody else's lives easier,” Tabitha said of why they started the business.
For winter tops, the snaps are installed on a shirt rather than a coat. Tabitha said it provides a tighter seal inside the coat and keeps the baby warm.
Everything at Snap-It-Baby costs less than $25, even an outfit with a shirt, pants, socks and other pieces. The owners intentionally keeps the price affordable.
“We have eight kids. We can't afford $40 or $50 for an outfit or even a piece of an outfit. So, we want to keep it affordable for people like us,” Tabitha said.
She said Zachary and her both grew up in families that didn’t have much money. That also affected how they set the price.
The couple spent much of their time testing different snaps and finding the best spots to put the device. Tabitha said they started out with metal snaps and moved to the plastic ones because some children are allergic to metals. Besides, plastic snaps with different colors match clothes better and don’t have temperature changes.
The children at the McDonald family are involved in the process. Tabitha said they snapped different types of fabrics over and over to make sure the design is sustainable.
The two eldest daughters, Jessica, 12, and Brooklynn, 9, now also help their mother install the snaps on clothes. They asked for ice cream as their pay, Tabitha said with a laugh.
Besides the sales online, Tabitha said she has participated in some craft shows around Richland County. People, especially grandparents, liked the idea of the snaps. Someone even asked, “why didn’t you have this 50 years ago?”
Tabitha said many parents can relate to the design. They told her that is why they always have an extra pair of socks in the diaper bags in case their kids kick them off and lose them somewhere.
More information about the products of Snap-It-Baby can be found on the business’ website.