Q+A with Paul Lips of Toobydoo Childrenswear

You don’t often find an expert in economics spending the day sketching designs for children’s rompers, tiny T-shirts and extra-small sweaters, but for Paul Lips, it’s a dream come true. This Holland-to-New York transplant had worked in the business side of fashion long before taking the leap to the design side – something he’d wanted to do since childhood.

Since launching his New York City-based Toobydoo children’s wear line in 2008, sales have more than doubled each year. Key to that, Lips says, is MagCloud’s ability to quickly print his high-quality catalogs and ship them to garment showrooms around the world. ”For buyers who’ve never seen our clothing up close and in person, MagCloud helps us present our products well,” he says.

  Tell us more about Toobydoo.

Paul Lips We’re a lifestyle design label for children, ages 0 to 8. Our philosophy is “go happy, go lucky” with “to be, do!” attitude. I think you see that in our garments. Children’s clothing should be fun – but it’s also about function. It has to be washable, easy to put on and easy to wear. There are all kinds of criteria to take into account, and I like having to keep that balance in mind.

  As a small business, how has custom publishing fit into your marketing plans?

PL We present our fashion collections through a line sheet that lists our products and specs – for example, age, price and style numbers. And then we produce a lookbook that features models wearing our garments in various lifestyle poses.

In fashion, it’s important to get from an initial idea to a product very quickly. We can do a photo shoot and, two days later, we can upload our line sheets and lookbook to MagCloud and have them instantly available in showrooms. Every day counts. If you don’t have your catalogs in the showroom when buyers are ready to buy, you’ll lose the order. They’ll buy someone else’s line.

  What got you started with publishing through MagCloud?

PL We were pretty early adopters. Our photographer mentioned it to us as an interesting way to produce our catalogs and ship them internationally. From that point on, we have always used it.

Our customers require that we have line sheets and lookbooks. They like the way our pieces are bound – it’s exactly what they want. They look at them, they circle items they like, they write notes on them. They can take the books with them. It makes it easy for them to order our products, and that’s what we want.

The quality is a perfect fit for us. And with MagCloud, we don’t have to order large quantities. If something changes in our line sheet – for example, we discontinue a certain garment – we can easily update the sheet and send it out again.

  What are your tips for someone new to self-publishing?

PL MagCloud is easy. The costs are so low that you can afford to experiment with different approaches. And you don’t have to buy a lot of software. You probably already have what you need on your computer. We use PowerPoint to lay out our pieces. You’ll be amazed with what you can do with the tools you already have.

  What author, artist, photographer or musician would you most like to have over for dinner?

PL Danish architect Bjarke Ingels. I like how he strikes a balance between playful and practical. That’s what I strive for in all of our designs.

367 Addison Avenue: Go Beyond Printing to the Heart of Your Business

Small businesses are finding more and more ways to use online resources to help their business grow and be successful. For example, HP MagCloud has helped thousands of businesses and independent publishers engage with their audiences, but did you know that HP has other small business resources available to help owners grow far beyond their communication and publishing needs?

A great resource is www.367AddisonAvenue.com. This HP small business blog features tips and tricks on basic business technology, how-to’s to grow your business, advice from leading experts on trends and upcoming small business technology, and stories about small businesses across the U.S. that are practicing technology innovation.

To all the small business owners and independent publishers out there who are trying to get your businesses off the ground, we encourage you to visit this blog to learn more on topics including:

You can also join the conversation or be the one to start it at HP’s Small Biz Nation community.


Vote for MagCloud in the SXSW PanelPicker – Ends Friday!

SXSW 2012 is prepping to bring the most captivating speakers, interesting topics and creative panels to film, music and interactive enthusiasts attending their Austin, Texas gathering March 9-18, 2012. Once again, they’re giving the public a voice by opening up the SXSW PanelPicker and letting YOU cast your vote for your favorite panels.

The MagCloud team has entered two great panel submissions to the PanelPicker featuring MagCloud publishers.

We hope you’ll vote for us in hopes we can bring these presentations to the biggest interactive conference in the U.S.!

Print Pioneers in a Digital World is about capturing the attention of your customers and getting your story heard by those who really matter. The panel will feature Roseann Hanson of Overland Expo and ConserVentures, Atlanta-based editorial photographer Zack Arias and Paul Lips of online children’s wear retailer ToobyDoo. For more on this panel and to cast your vote, go here.

The PB&J Effect: How to Publish in Print & Digital is about the perfect combination of print and digital and how perfecting that balance will help you reach a bigger audience. Joining us on the panel are Gizmondo’s Senior Reporter Mat Honan (also known as one of the editors behind Longshot Magazine), well-known photographer Trey Ratcliff and graphic designer/illustrator Craig Frazier who recently debuted his new Living Letters font. For more on this panel and to cast your vote, go here.

If you like what you see, all you have to do is create a free account (it’s easy!) and hit the thumbs up button on our panel pages.

Want to help spread the word. Tweet or Facebook about these presentations:

 Hurry! Deadline to vote is 11:59 CDT on Friday, September 2.

Tell us you voted by leaving a comment below.