March 8 is International Women’s Day and we are celebrating the amazing achievements of the women we work with at One Tiny Suitcase.
Our customer base is primarily women. Our breast pump and fetal doppler rentals service women who are pregnant and who have welcomed new babies into their lives.
I personally deliver several breast pumps each week to brand new moms in their homes. I am always amazed to see how truly amazing these moms are doing only days after giving birth.
One Tiny Suitcase has always been a business for women started by women and it continues to operate that way today. Cheers to all my fellow female entrepreneurs doing business to serve other women!
We’ve hit a big milestone at One Tiny Suitcase. This month marks our 5 year anniversary of being in business.
I started the business back in 2006 when my twins were just 2 years old. We had just returned home from our first major family vacation in Hawaii. For our trip we had bought new travel strollers and an apparatus that linked the two single strollers together. We made make-shift beds for the kids at the hotel by pushing twin beds up against the wall. Car Seats were borrowed from the car rental agencies. That was the first trip where I realized just how much ‘stuff’ we really needed when travelling with kids.
When I got back home to Calgary, Alberta I started researching options for family travel thinking there “Had to be a better way”. I started seeing a trend in Baby Equipment Rental companies cropping up all over Canada and the USA.
One Tiny Suitcase was opened a few months later on a $5000 personal loan and lots of ambition.
We are celebrating with some special offers and rental packages. Visit us at www.OneTinySuitcase.ca
This month Alberta Business Link is profiling One Tiny Suitcase in their Entrepreneur of the Month.
With 3 locations across Canada, One Tiny Suitcase has grown since it’s beginnings in 2006.
Click here to view the entire article!
Entrepreneur of the Month: Stacey’s Story
“I wanted to share my story with you about how I have used The Business Link to grow my business.
My company, One Tiny Suitcase was started in May 2006. I began attending the Small Business Learning sessions to help me grow my business.
With my first location in Calgary, I expanded to open a second location in Edmonton in June 2008. By the Fall of 2010, I was ready to open a third location but not quite sure when and where to do that.
In September of 2010, I called the Alberta Business Link and spoke with one of your Business Management Guest Advisors. He listened to the history of my business, what my expansion goals were and some of the research I had done. With his advice and recommendations I opened a third location of One Tiny Suitcase in Winnipeg in November of 2010.
As a small business owner, sometimes you just need to ‘bounce your ideas’ off of someone with experience. The Guest Advisor confirmed what I had thought all along…it was time for location #3!
Thank you for all of the courses, seminars and services you provide. You are a valuable part of my Business!”
I’m writing this week’s blog from Hawaii. My 6 yr old twins are with me and we are staying on the island of Oahu.
Normally Oahu is just a quick stop we make before travelling to other neighboring islands but this time we have decided to make it our vacation destination.
The Turtle Bay Resort on the North Shore of the island of Oahu is where we are staying. We have a beach villa that is just steps away from the beach.
I’m on a multi-generational trip that includes my parents, my sister and brother-in-law as well as their 6 month old son. I love travelling with extended family, we travel together about once a year.
My must have gadgets for this trip have been an IPOD loaded with kid’s tv shows and movies and my TomTom GPS. When we aren’t at the beach or in the swimming pool we are driving around the island exploring. The kids love the IPOD’s loaded with shows and music just for them. I love the GPS because it gets us where we need to go quickly and efficiently.
We are half way through our vacation….more sun reports to come.
One Tiny Suitcase was started in May 2006. In the last 4 years we seen lots of growth, lots of customers, lots of babies, new moms, new dads, expectant parents, grandmas, etc.
After expanding the business to include a location in Edmonton in 2009, we decided to open a 3rd location in Winnipeg (click to see the video) this November.
Winnipeg is my home town and is a great city for families. We’re looking forward to providing Baby Equipment Rentals to our customers who live in and visit the area.
My twins are 6 years old now and although I speak to new moms everyday at One Tiny Suitcase, I sometimes forget the anxiety that can come with being a new mom.
My sister recently had a beautiful baby boy. It’s been great seeing my sister experiencing everything that comes with a new baby.
This week she experienced another FIRST. Baby’s first flight. A Calgary to Winnipeg trip to introduce baby to flying. She asked me to take her to the airport for the ‘big trip’. Although I’m up at the Calgary Airport daily picking up and dropping off car seats for my customers, I kind of forgot about some of the challenges with flying with a baby.
My sister decided to check her stroller and car seat in as checked baggage. She carried the baby in the Baby Bjorn and made arrangements for the rest of the gear she will need in Winnipeg.
Even the smallest tasks that some of us might take for granted are made more difficult with a baby strapped to the front of you. Collapsing the stroller, lifting luggage on to the scale, placing the folded up stroller on the conveyor belt at the oversized luggage drop, etc. I was glad that I waited with the two of them until they had completed all of those tasks. An extra set of hands was crucial!
I’m so proud of them for making the journey at only 6 weeks old. Turns out, the little man slept the whole flight! Yeah!
Most of our customers come to Calgary & Edmonton on vacation or to visit family and friends. A recent customer however, came here on very different circumstances.
Here is an email we recently received from one of our customers who came to Calgary for a family emergency:
See it on YouTube.
When I opened One Tiny Suitcase in May 2006 it was in response to my own travel woes. I had twins and we were ‘on the road’ in one form or another starting when they were about 2 months old.
I loved the concept of Baby Equipment Rentals and couldn’t help my entrepreneurial itch to get a business of my own started.
4 years later, One Tiny Suitcase has grown to include a bigger range of Baby Equipment Rentals for young families and two locations (Calgary & Edmonton).
Check out the latest coverage in the Calgary Herald about our Medela breast pump & Fetal doppler rentals:
Hear Your Baby’s Heartbeat — Every Day
Equipment Rentals – Expecting parents tired of waiting for the monthly doctor visits to hear their little one’s heartbeat can now get a pulse on the baby whenever they like, thanks to One Tiny Suitcase.
The Calgary-based company rents medical-grade fetal doppler units — the same ones used in doctor’s offices. Moms especially love the units because they can share the auditory experience with older children or grandparents, says company owner Stacey Corbett.
One Tiny Suitcase has also started renting Medela breast pumps. New moms can pre-order a pump and thus avoid driving around from drugstore to drugstore searching for one after the baby arrives (the company offers free pump delivery and pick up).
The company originally launched as a service for visitors to Calgary; a place where they could rent strollers, car seats, cribs or high chairs (instead of travelling with them).
Corbett soon realized there was a demand by Calgarians for a wider range of specialized baby gear.
When we were asked to be on Edmonton’s Breakfast Television show we were thrilled.
Open since June 2009, the Edmonton location of One Tiny Suitcase baby equipment rentals has been growing like crazy.
Many thanks to the crew at Breakfast Television for making us feel so welcome. Our service is new to the city of Edmonton and your profile of the business will help us to get the word out!
The Edmonton location of One Tiny Suitcase just got their first bit of press coverage today.
Edmonton Journal writer Bill Mah writes, “Babies may be small and portable, but all their gear isn’t so much. Just ask any parent at the airport checking in a car seat, travel crib and stroller while shouldering a supersized diaper bag.”
One Tiny Suitcase Edmonton, provides rentals of all the necessary gear- delivered to your door.
We are so lucky to be able to service the families in Edmonton!