By Jeff Todd
DENVER (CBS4) – As Hillary Denham stood in a stocked fulfillment room with bins from floor to the ceiling, she had an easy time looking back on the start of her company.
“I started the business at my kitchen table, and I was making bows for my daughters. When I started selling them on Etsy, I could only make enough for a bin like this, and I kept it in my closet,” she said.
That was only four years ago when Denham started making handmade bows for kids and selling them online. Instagram helped propel a meteoric rise turning Wunderkin Co. into a popular brand with an enthusiastic following.
“Back then Instagram was just really easy to grow. You could post pretty things and gain new followers every day. I know I gained 1,000 followers in a week and that’s kind of when I thought, ‘There’s something to this,’” she said. “We have almost 110,000 followers on Instagram and 9,000 moms in a private Facebook group.”
Wunderkin now has 40 seamstresses across the United States. The African Community Center has helped train refugee women how to perfect sewing and Denham is hoping to hire more.
“Using virtual seamstresses has been a huge blessing because it’s allowed us to scale quickly but there’s definitely limitations,” Denham said. “I really want everything we do to make a difference. We have some women refugees working for us and then others just talented seamstresses from all walks of life.”
When Denham was alone she could make about 100 bows a week. Now, Wunderkin is making 3,600 a week.
“I feel like there’s a lot of love and thought that goes in to making an intentional product like this,” she said. “We hope our bows symbolize raising girls that are brave and adventurous.”
As she looks over the companies new larger space near 41st Avenue and Pecos Street, Denham hopes her emphasis on helping others while creating quality products will inspire others.
“You can literally do anything you want. If I can do this with bows, the sky’s the limit for anyone.”
Wunderkin is holding a Grand Opening event on Sunday.
Jeff Todd joined the CBS4 team in 2011 covering the Western Slope in the Mountain Newsroom. Since 2015 he’s been working across the Front Range in the Denver Headquarters. Follow him on Twitter @CBS4Jeff.