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With a nudge from the Muppets' boss, a 'Couv company thinks big

Robert Ham
With a nudge from the Muppets' boss, a 'Couv company thinks big

The rapid ascent of Slumberkins, the Vancouver, Washington-based company that creates what they call “cuddly creatures with intention,” is the kind of success story that every entrepreneur dreams of. In 2016, best friends and co-CEOs Kelly Oriard and Callie Christensen were hand-sewing each one of their popular line of stuffed animals that, when paired with tenderly written board books, tries to instill therapeutic techniques and life skills like mindfulness, conflict resolution and dealing with grief. The two women started by selling Slumberkins at craft fairs and through an Etsy store but their ambition and sales were rapidly increasing, fueled by word-of-mouth and by a 2017 appearance on ABC’s popular reality series "Shark Tank." While Oriard and Christensen didn’t score a deal that day, the sharks did recognize the potential of Slumberkins.