Well, this blog has been quiet because the day after my last post, I went for a bike ride and wound up breaking my hand in two places. I currently have 5 pins and 7 stitches in my right/dominant hand.

So, this is going to be short! I have a lot of clever things to say about it but need to install some good voice recognition software.

We have been so happy to get some wonderful press in the Saint Louis community in the last few weeks.

First, a great piece in Saint Louis Magazine's October issue:


Custom Made

A local company goes beyond the monogram.

Photograph courtesy of Cindy Teasdale McGowan

Cindy Teasdale McGowan was logging long hours at her Internet job in San Francisco while her then-boyfriend—Bill McGowan, co-owner of McGowan Brothers Development—was more than 2,000 miles away in St. Louis. A few months after he popped the question, she left her much-loved tech job and moved here.

New to the Midwest, she began looking for a job similar to her previous post in product management at digital-photography company Snapfish, but nothing came close. “What I loved most about my job was the ability for customers to build something online that would show up on a doorstep as a tangible product,” says McGowan. “In terms of this process, I noticed there was a big hole in the kids’ market.”

In her spare time, she developed Makaboo (makaboo.com), an online personalized children’s gift store. “We built our own program that allows clients to play around and create an item by having complete control over font, thread color, and a selection of 80 icons to choose from,” she explains. “The process takes less than 5 minutes.”

With prices running from less than $20 for bibs and hats up to $150, McGowan wants the line to be accessible to all. Since launching in December 2009, she’s shipped to 46 states, with more than 30 percent of her clientele being repeat customers. She’s also opened a storefront at 609 N. 13th, where you can schedule an appointment by calling 877-800-7952.

The steady paycheck’s gone—but McGowan wouldn’t have it any other way. Like Makaboo’s products, the company’s made just for her.