The inauguration of Barack Obama has led the world into a new era of interest in understanding each other globally. That interest has compelled people to reconcile their histories with one another, find the inspiration in themselves and share it with the larger world. Increasingly, people want this for their children and for themselves. For Aisha & Co. and its Ishababies® this marks a time where the world is coming into harmony with their larger vision.
What’s your flavor? What makes you unique? That’s what Ishababies® have been all about since their introduction in 2004! Ishababies® reflect the many special things that define us: our hair and eye color, attitudes and favorite things—our love of a sports team, playing outside, swinging as high as the top bar, a special hobby, our joys and inspirations, maybe where we come from.
Isha (short for Aisha) means life. Ishababies® represent the uniqueness of each of us within the global village. Each Ishababies® character has his and her own special eye, hair and complexion color, without representing any specific background or ethnicity. The soft sculptured characters come with fun mix-and-match clothes that reflect different walks of life, like the doctor’s coat/medical scrubs/patient gown for the medical profession. More recently, its trendy High Fashion accessory line has showcased Ishababies® with great new looks in the lifestyle and professional arenas.
Ishababies® were created by pediatric medical student Aisha Bailey who could ‘see the beauty in all children and wanted them to see the beauty in all people’. They are a metaphor for each of us, individual and beautiful in our own way, “ says Bailey Aisha & Co. creator and CEO Aisha Bailey. “Aisha & Co focuses on creating products that celebrate life and give our customers a feeling of well-being.”
For Bailey, this is a special calling. Her acclaimed Ishababies® are among the first such line with a global range of characters to be designed by an African-american woman. To her, it is most important that the Ishababies® family “creates a strong sense of appreciation of oneself and others for all people everywhere”. The Ishababies® theme is “One World….All Flavors”®.
Turbinado, Coco, Marigold, Peach, Caramel, Mocha, Poppy, new flavored pairs are added to the bunch periodically (The most recent addition is ChocoChip.) All genuine Ishababies® have Aisha’s “kiss of approval” signature and trademarked diaper.
When futurist Buckminster Fuller (inventor of the Geodesic Dome) visited her first grade class, six year old Aisha asked him, “How do you invent things?” That was an initial signal of the prolific creativity and inventiveness which would later deliver dozens of characters and creations including the Ishababies® family.
Growing up, Aisha Bailey’s family vacations were walking, climbing, riding adventures to unusual places that showed her how people from other backgrounds lived and adapted to their environments. How many 12-year olds have seen polar and grizzly bears, caribou, artic fox and bearded seal in Barrow, Alaska, 340 miles north of the Arctic Circle and hiked Denali National Park & Preserve’s mountains and glaciers? How many 9-year olds have walked across Hawaii’s volcanoes and varied landscapes?
As a Brown undergraduate, staying with families in Zimbabwe and assisting at AIDS clinics, Aisha worked with a very special physician, who nursed villagers back to health using the few tools that he had available to him, along with love and respect for his patients. Later, Aisha lived in the Amazon rain forests of Venezuela with the Yekuana Indians, studying their traditional medicine and traditions. After 9/11, she assisted the Deputy Director of the WTC investigations and was a family liaison for victims of the World Trade Center disaster. “I came to realize,” she says, “how important and healing it is to connect with those who have been devastated by serious loss or illness.” In 1998 and 99, Aisha worked with pediatric patients at the Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence. As Co-Coordinator of Playroom Activities, she helped the children express their internalized emotions through play, reading and art.
Determined to make a meaningful contribution in medicine, Aisha Bailey is now in her 4th year at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey School of Osteopathic Medicine. Just as her family showed her, earlier in her life, how other people live, they continue to be a sustaining force as Aisha shapes Aisha & Co. “With the involvement of Mom, Dad and my brother, its very much a family business” she says.
That business has grown steadily over the years. Today, Ishababies® are carried in over 200 retail outlets across the U.S., Canada, Bermuda, St. Martin, Mexico, Aruba and Saudi Arabia. And Aisha’s vision continues to expand as kids of all ages see the beauty in themselves and others through Ishababies®.
For a peek into the huggable world of Aisha & Co., please visit www.aishaco.com. For further information on where and how to purchase Ishababies® . and Aisha Co. stuff, please call: 203-227-9792. Aisha & Co. will be an exhibitor at the 2007 National Stationery Show (Booth 1659) this May in New York.
fla•vor (fl v r) adj. *A term to describe what makes you unique.
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