MLB stars Stephen Strasburg, Brandon Phillips and Todd Frazier are just a few of the many baseball players that have sported one of the hottest baseball accessories on the market. A year after sisters Alexis Rosenbaum and Hannah King founded Baseball Lacelets outside the Cincinnati suburb of Loveland, Ohio, the accessory is rapidly gaining a following among both baseball fans and players from coast to coast.
How did such an idea come about? In 2013, Rosenbaum was working as a nanny which went well beyond just watching the kids. She became more of the life manager for the family and became hungry to start a new venture that would allow her to maximize what she thought she was capable of. Instead of quickly rushing into what this next step could be, she spent time focusing on herself and preparing for whatever opportunity could possibly present itself.
With her mind heavily on personal growth heading into Christmas 2013, Rosenbaum wanted to give a gift that was sentimental allowing her family members to express themselves and encourage them to go after whatever goals and dreams that needed a little extra nudge to pursue.
Her husband, Boston Red Sox minor league pitcher Danny Rosenbaum, brought home a bag of loose glove lacing one night suggesting she turn something useless on its own into something useful. Her Christmas gift-giving desire combined with the lacing led to the idea of putting wording on the lacing with a steel stamp.
After giving the gifts, the lacelets were noticed by friends of the family members who received Rosenbaum’s gift. Many wondered where they could also get one for themselves. Suddenly there was demand for a product that wasn’t even available to be purchased. Her desire for transition now had a concrete idea.
Bringing younger sister Hannah King into the picture, they teamed up to establish Baseball Lacelets. Just as any good baseball team has players that complement each other, Rosenbaum’s task oriented mind and King’s creative skills have created a winning team in business.
The lacelets initially sold on Etsy in February 2014 which created a hub for those wearing the lacelets to send interested individuals to. As more time passed and orders continued to swell, it didn’t take long to realize they had what it took to fully set out on their own. In July 2014, Baseball Lacelets launched their own website.
While both sisters didn’t previously have any formal business education or experience, they grew up watching their mother model business success selling cars. She was also a pivotal part in helping her husband become a preferred contractor across the country for Walmart.
One of the biggest lessons the sisters learned from their mother in business was the importance of following a gut feeling. Baseball Lacelets has become a success story due to being on the field in the marketplace not just in the batting cages in development.
The business has grown every month since being established because of this growth and innovation mindset. For example, a newer product allows a customer to mail in their own glove and is turned into a lacelet. One of the more moving stories comes from a son who sent in his father’s glove after he passed away. He now has a reminder everyday of the times he spent with his dad that is bound together with his lacelet.
What makes Baseball Lacelets unique is the personalization. Quotes, taglines, or phrases are the most common branded words into the lacelets. Some favorites from the co-owners are “Progress always involves risk. You can’t steal second without taking your first of first.” and “Seek to be worth knowing rather than be well known”.
Some of the lessons they’ve witnessed on the baseball field have been transferred over into their day to day business journey. King states, “With baseball you can’t swing at every pitch and we’ve found with business it is the same. Opportunities pop up all the time that may seem promising, but patience is what will see you through to the home runs.”
For anyone thinking about grabbing a bat and stepping into the entrepreneurial batter’s box, Rosenbaum’s best advice is to accept that everyday has to be consumed by what you are working towards especially in the initial years getting the business off the ground. Rosenbaum confidently exclaims, “Winning in business isn’t just about collecting business cards and answering emails. A successful businessperson is fully committed to problem solving.”
In the limited time these busy businesswomen aren’t working, crossfit, shopping, and going to coffee shops are the fuel to recharging away from the grind.
The sisters are ready to soon have their own laser engraver after exceeding the Kickstarter campaign goal of $18,000 which is coming to a close on Tuesday. Growth will no longer be limited to the current warehouse where they rent a three hour block each day to access the shared engraver. Having raised over $21,000 so far, the excess funds will go towards getting their own warehouse space.
Looking ahead, the future is bright for these baseball loving sisters. When asked what the legacy of Baseball Lacelets will be looking back one day King explains, “The legacy of Baseball Lacelets is not so much with the company itself. Rather it’s every time someone wears their lacelet, looks down at their personalized message and remembers a fond memory.”
Baseball is America’s pastime filled with stories that span many generations. Through Baseball Lacelets, these sisters are playing their part to help these stories never be forgotten.
If you would like to create your own customized lacelet, there are two ways to do so…
- Visit BaseballLacelet.com and enter HOMEPLATE at checkout to receive 15% off of your order good until Friday April 3 at 11:59 pm Eastern
- Visit the Baseball Lacelet Kickstarter page until Tuesday March 31 at 11:59 pm Eastern
You can also follow Baseball Lacelets on social media…
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