Runchkins was inspired by a trip to a boutique kid’s clothing store to buy a Christmas gift for my 6-month old niece, Charlotte. Being my first-ever trip within the strange world of tiny-apparel, I wandered aimlessly and asked basic questions like what size should a 6-month old be wearing? how fast will she grow and how long would she be able to wear it? do sizes expire, like milk?? With the help of a good natured associate, 45 minutes later I had found an adorable 2-piece cashmere knit set with a fair isle design, hoodie, and a center pocket (‘cause kiddos like pockets, right?).
Leaving the store, I was excited that I had found great clothes at what I thought was a fair price. Then I started doing the math. I spent $100 on the gift, my niece was 6-months old, and winter was only 3 months long. How quickly would she outgrow these clothes before the season changed? Would she wear the outfit even twice? That’s almost $50 per wear!! What would happen to the 2-piece cashmere set when she outgrew it? Would it just sit in storage or be donated?
I thought to myself, why would anyone spend so much time finding clothes that would only be worn once or twice? But then I saw my niece wearing the outfit and she looked adorable, and it was worth every penny. The problem wasn’t the cute clothes, but how do we find them easily and what do we do with them after the child outgrows them? With the immense variety of fabulous (and sometimes not so fabulous) clothes out there for children, how do we source fabulous outfits without making it a full-time job?
That’s when I imagined a personal shopping service that does all the work for you, leaving behind the fun reveal of the perfect, adorable outfit. And so Runchkins was born.
- Jeff Cheng, Founder & CEO
Jeff is passionate about helping parents’ enjoy more of their children’s lives. He founded Runchkins to help parents everywhere find adorable kids clothes in a hassle-free way, and to solve the problem of what to do with their clothes when their kids outgrow them.
Prior to founding Runchkins, Jeff developed his love of solving problems as a management consultant with the Boston Consulting Group and a banker with Wells Fargo Bank. His experience ranges from building a strategy to launch a digital bank in China (where he was lucky enough to work with John), to improving how a retailer procures its inventory, and negotiating turn-around plans for large real estate projects. Jeff is also an investor in a startup wine company and a holder of 2 US patents. Jeff holds a B.S. in Finance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Jeff is a proud uncle of 2 smart, rambunctious nieces that inspire him daily. He recently taught the older one how to ice skate and hopes to teach the younger one how to snowboard soon.
Favorite halloween candy: Kit Kats
1st memory as a child: Holding chicks that just hatched in Kindergarten
Gift that he always wanted as a kid but never got: Remote controlled hovercraft
John is responsible for making sure Runchkins is great, from placing an order online to how it feels to open a Runchkins Box.
Before joining Runchkins, John worked across the US, Europe, and Asia in innovation and design. He’s been inspired by having a chance to make services work better for people, whether they’re managing their finances, digital devices, or health... or finding great clothes for their kids :)
In the past, he’s designed new customer experiences and services for clients such as ASUS, Intel, Samsung, UniCredit, U.S. Bank, Siam Commercial Bank, Telstra Health, Bayer, and the Boston Consulting Group.
John holds a Masters in Service and Experience Design, from Domus Academy in Milan, Italy and a B.A. in English Literature, Graphic Design, and Web Development from UW Eau Claire.
Favorite halloween candy: Sour Patch Kids (mmm sugar burn)
1st memory as a child: attempting to run away at age 3 and making it no further than the wild strawberry patch in the field behind our house (while my parents watched from the window, the world was small then!)
Gift that he always wanted as a kid but never got: Sorry Jeff, I actually got the hovercraft. Really.
Chief Mom on our Board of Parents
Susan is our resident mom, helping us make Runchkins a real time-saver and life-saver for parents. When she’s not wrestling her two lively, precocious girls out the door (where are their shoes? why do they never have shoes??), she is a busy professional serving as a professor in public health. She spends her days training the future ebola-fighters of tomorrow, along with researching what causes chronic runny noses and late night munchies, and her weekends raising her daughters to be future explorers, artists, and potential ninjas.
Although Susan loves nothing better than to dress her girls in swoon-worthy, fabulous outfits, she would rather spend her very limited free time building Legos, making dresses out of play-doh, and staging puppet shows with her girls, instead of searching through dozens of online retailers for the perfect outfit for her littles. As Jeff’s big sister, she’s thrilled to be part of the family business of finding amazing looks for tiny discerning fashion plates everywhere, and their savvy parents. This is pretty much her dream job; the thrill of contributing to picking the perfect outfits while bringing smiles to parents and little monkeys everywhere.
Favorite halloween candy: Almond Joy
1st memory as a child: running through the sprinklers in her Easter dress unbeknownst by mom
Gift that she always wanted as a kid but never got: Barbie Dream House
Resident Blogger for Runchkins
Catherine (Cat) is responsible for the Runchkins blog. Cat is a mommy at her core, a writer by nature, and a believer of simple style with a personal touch. This mama is an advocate of parents-helping-parents, sharing real stories.
From Detroit, to Boston to Los Angeles, Cat had exciting adventures and global travels. In 2012, Cat’s life changed. She transitioned from Happy Baby poses in her West Hollywood yoga class, to marrying her best friend (the Corn King), and raising two of their own happy babies (A1 & A2), on a vegetable farm outside Buffalo, NY. Needless to say, Cat’s lifestyle has endured a few modifications. But she stays fully connected and keeps her kids in style with the help of Runchkins.
Cat holds a B.A. from Michigan State University, and an M.A. in Health Communication from Emerson College in conjunction with Tufts School of Medicine. She is a digital content specialist by day, a cook by night, a freelance writer on the weekends, and a loving wife and mother always.
Favorite halloween candy: Salt over sugar. Fries, please
1st memory as a child: Playing with the hose at our first home in Texas
Gift that she always wanted as a kid but never got: Puppy Surprise
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