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lundi 18 août 2014

Park Slope breast-feeding boutique Boing Boing set to close as owner heads to Haiti

Boing Boing owner Karen Paperno, 48, is shutting down her shop and heading to Haiti to help out new moms who are struggling more than stroller pushers in the pricey neighborhood.
BY DOYLE MURPHY
Gone, baby, gone. The owner of a popular Park Slope breast-feeding boutique is shutting down and heading to Haiti to help out new moms who are struggling more than stroller pushers in the pricey neighborhood.
“Park Slope has a lot of resources,” said Boing Boing owner Karen Paperno, 48. “I wanted to go somewhere that didn’t have any resources.”
The shop has been selling breastfeeding accessories and fitting mothers for nursing bras at the corner of 6th Ave. and Union St. since 1996.
In those 18 years, Paperno said she’s seen Park Slope morph into one of the most-expensive, baby-loving neighborhoods in the city.
“In ‘96 there wasn’t anything, and my work made sense,” she said, noting the recent influx of child-centric stores catering to Brooklyn’s affluent new parents. “They don’t need me.”
Paperno considered throwing in the towel in December 2013, when she penned a scathing essay in the Huffington Post, laying bare her frustration with yuppie moms. The freeloaders, she fumed, kept seeking advice on trivial concerns while a cash-strapped Paperno considered shoplifting a necklace for her own daughter.
“Now parents come in after buying their carriers online and expect me to show them how to use it,” she wrote. “After all, that’s what I do, right?”
OURTES
She expected vitriol for speaking out, but she was instead rewarded with donations and kind words from dozens of customers and perfect strangers.
“It inspired me to keep going,” she said.
It worked for eight months, Paperno said, but she couldn’t shake the feeling she could be more useful elsewhere.
She jumped on an opportunity with Rockin’ Baby Sling — a company that donates slings to mothers in need — to go to Haiti in October.
She plans to shutter the shop at the end of September and has begun raising money through an online Indiegogo campaign to fund her $8,000 trip.
The business is temporarily closed while Paperno drops off her daughter at college in California. She’ll return Aug. 20 to sell off her stock and bid her customers farewell.
“It’s only just beginning to hit me,” Paperno said. “I’m excited. I’m a little nervous. It’ll be huge, and I’ll be crying.”
dmmurphy@nydailynews.com
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/pioneering-park-slope-baby-store-boing-boing-close-article-1.1905330

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