Bumbledoo: Downtown’s One-Stop Baby Supply Shop
Downtown Fayetteville is filled with dynamic establishments run by passionate risk-takers who are devoted to the community. Our View from the Market House showcases the businesses and entrepreneurs that make downtown shine.
Raising a baby is a joy. Between all the crying and the diaper changing, seeing your own flesh and blood grow exponentially larger as times goes by really pays off. Bumbledoo, the downtown area’s organic baby store, offers a wide variety of baby products to ease the troubles of child raising by offering a wide range of services to mothers all across Fayetteville.
Malia Kalua Allen, owner of Bumbledoo, began pursuing her passion while raising her own children in Durham. Her hobby of making products for her children turned into a business when she realized the interest she was receiving from other young moms. Allen wanted to offer products that were organic, earth-friendly and affordable. After great success at her booth at the Dogwood Festival, Allen saw an opportunity to own a store when she noticed the vacant spot while driving through Downtown Fayetteville; thus, Bumbledoo was born.
Starting her own shop was no easy feat. “I barely had enough money to fill the shelves with cloth diapers,” Allen said. After a difficult start, Bumbledoo soon became a respectable name within the downtown community. The store is known for its excellent customer service and dedicated employees who want nothing more than to relieve the stress on new mothers. Her hard work and dedication earned her a spot in the Fayetteville Observer’s 40 Under 40 for her outstanding work in making Bumbledoo possible
.In addition to selling premium products, Bumbledoo also offers special classes for mothers. “We do free classes for cloth diapers and weaning,” Allen said. “We also host a breastfeeding cafe every third Thursday each month at Marquis Market.” Allen also stressed the importance of keeping up-to-date with mothering practices as they evolve generation after generation. “Other baby stores are old-world,” she said. “They’re not in touch with new-age moms.” Green products are becoming more popular with parents as advances in science show the harmful effects some traditional products may have on a child’s health.
One of the many specialties of Bumbledoo is its cloth diaper service. Much different than their expensive, one-time-use counterparts, cloth diapers are reusable and contain no harmful chemicals. Additionally, disposable diapers make-up a staggering amount of landfill waste, approximately 4 percent. Using disposable diapers not only litters landfills, but also litters our bills with hidden trash disposal costs too. Allen also stressed how inexpensive cloth diapers are compared to disposable ones. “Providing diapers for one child alone costs thousands of dollars,” she said. “Cloth diapers cover multiple children for only $500.”Allen is proud of her shop and believes it offers something special that big stores cannot. “My store is specialized in selling green products while being knowledgeable of them — unlike big stores,” Allen said.
Bumbledoo will soon relocate to its new store location at 417 Hay Street to accommodate its expanding business. The new store will have much more room and allow Allen to better service her customers with a more thorough selection of products.
“I don’t want to leave downtown, I believe in downtown,” Allen said. Bumbledoo is one of many great shopping locations in Downtown Fayetteville that boasts a unique and tailored store with a ton of personality and charm. While browsing what Bumbledoo has to offer, don’t forget to check out many of the other wonderful small businesses that call Downtown Fayetteville home.
Photo: Malia Kalua Allen, owner of Bumbledoo.