Monday, August 29, 2011

Spotlight on Mommy -- Priska Diaz of Bittylab -- Creator of the BARE Air-Free Baby Bottle

This week's Spotlight Mommy is Priska Diaz, the creator of BARE air-free baby bottle. Even though her product will not be available until the end of this year, I wanted to share Priska's inspirational story with you.  And, with anothr daughter on the way, I will definitely be picking up her bottle to help alleviate colic with our new daughter.  If she will be anything like Savannah, this bottle will come in handy. 

Here is more information about this amazing invention:

"BARE™ is the first to market air-free baby bottle that mimics mother’s breast entirely–not just the nipple– from shapes & texture to movement, storage and delivery of milk. With air-plug™technology that works similar to a syringe, BARE dispenses100% air-free contents to baby to help prevent gas/colic.Perfe-latch™nipple extends upon suction to emulate mechanics of breastfeeding, to prevent nipple confusion."

And, now on to my interview with this amazing mommy.  Enjoy!

Name: Priska Diaz
Company Name/Product/Service: BARE air-free baby bottles by Bittylab
Company Location: New York, NY
Company Website:
Twitter Handle: @Bittylab
Age of Company: 1 year
Favorite Inspirational Quotes: "Frustration is the mother of innovation" 
Favorite Book: "The Tipping Point"

         Tell us a little bit about yourself.  How many children do you have?  What are their ages? Your
         hobbies? Etc.

I'm Priska, mom of Carlton and Adriana 3 and 2 respectively. I like traveling, although with kids is very hard but we do it any way. 
Briefly explain your business.  How did it come about?
When I gave birth to Carlton, my first son, I had already decided he'll be 100% breastfed, 3 days later I introduced sips of water to satisfy a dryness in his mouth. At the 7-day visit, the pediatrician told us Carlton was loosing weight, his dry mouth was a sign of poor nutrition and I must supplement with formula. Reluctantly, I became a combo mom and found that every time I bottle fed Carlton I turned him into a bag of gas leading to frustration and sleepless nights for the 3 of us. That's when the designer in me took over & invented a baby bottle that functioned & felt like the breast to dispense air-free milk. "My breasts don't have air-vents, why should baby bottles?" was the question that started it all.
What is a typical work day like?
I drop the kids at my mother's house where a baby sitter watches them  and go to my day time job (part time) in Manhattan. Later in the afternoon I get home and pick up where I left off the day before to get BARE air-free out the door while food is on the stove. When kids comeback at around 5pm, I feed them, play with them a little while Daddy has dinner. Then Daddy takes them out to the park or play ground, local zoo, etc. and I do more work while I eat dinner. Later they comeback when it's time to go to bed.
What has been a struggle while starting up your company? 
The biggest challenge is to raise enough funds to start production. It's a job on itself to prepare business plan, presentation, finances, etc. to even achieve an introduction to an investor or group of investors. Learning the right communication of your product is very important for a pitch or presentation about your product. The internet is a great tool but one always have to check the sources, since not everything we read has a backed foundation. 
          What did you do in your past work life?
I studied Graphic Design and worked for several magazines and Ad agencies for almost 10 years. Bored with the 2D world, I went back to school and in 2003, I received a Masters Degree in Communications and Packaging Design which opened doors to world class companies in the beauty industry like L'Oreal and Avon where I gained tremendous experience for over 8 years.  3 years ago, I became a mom, Oh boy! it turned my world upside down. Like the 56% of moms, I felt neglected by the poor choice and badly designed products available, It's when I decided it was time to turn my attention to the baby industry and design products for mom & baby.
I've designed for big and small companies, big and small campaigns that included corporate identity to product design to packaging, marketing and promotional including environmental and interior design for trade shows, etc. On September 23-26 Bittylab will present BARE air-free at the ABC Kids Expo in Kentucky, so there's a lot of design work I'll be doing for the next few weeks.

What have been some of your major successes?
As a designer, my success was to be recognized within the industry on a regional, national and international level. As a mom, balancing a life with 2 children that are only 13 months a part is really an achievement. How do moms with twins do it?
What have been some of your major challenges?
As a new mom, learning how to take care of baby with the wrong tools can be nearly impossible and a contributor a post-partum depression. I wish a bottle like BARE would be around when I went thru days and days of sleep depravation. 
On those impossible days, what motivates you to keep going?
Looking at our children growing so fast, it seems like yesterday when I had them in my arms trying to breastfeed them. Wishing to see them grow to become successful individual is enough to get me going, It's even a motivation to even have another one!
What is your balancing secret in managing a business and family?
Allocating time slots for each task and sticking to it. When it's time to work, I work. When it's time to play, I play.
What is next for your business?
Bare air-free will launch in January 2012 in major retailers across the USA, my challenge is to inform moms of this wonderful tool so that they can take advantage —and have some sanity— of this product as soon as it's available. Continuing the growth in the BARE family with other products, is also in the pipeline of innovation.
Do you have any advice for other mom entrepreneurs that are starting out and struggling, or are on the fence about starting a business?
          Creating a business plan is very important, even if it's not done to perfection it gives you material to 
          build on it. It makes life easier.

1 comment :

  1. This product is so smart and may I say thank you and finally! I had never heard about this product until I read about it on your blog.
    heather [email protected]