December 11

Supporting Down Syndrome Owned Businesses

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This is about Down syndrome businesses – that is, businesses which are owned by people with Down syndrome, or by families or allies of our community.

This Down syndrome Business list also focuses on companies which have items available for sale online. 

Supporting Businesses with a Connection to Down Syndrome; “Down Syndrome Owned Businesses”

Our Down syndrome community is close-knit.

Oh, we squabble on social media and have tiffs here and there, but we also have each other’s backs something fierce. When we have questions about IEP’s or band together to seek out solutions or justice, there is no stopping us.

We also like to support each other.

Here’s a guide with links and information that will help us in supporting Down syndrome businesses (that is, businesses with a positive connection to Down syndrome).

The sections have been categorized.

1. Businesses that are run by individuals with Down syndrome

This means that the product is made by the individual with Down syndrome and the store is run largely through their own efforts.

Andy Meredith Photography: I really love his work (and follow him on Instagram). Shop at his site, linked here

Chani’s Creations: bracelets and jewelry

Downright Charming: lovely quilts made by Sarah

Sophiola: beautiful paintings, prints, cards

Moira’s Ventures: Activist Moira Rossi set up a business in which she sells programs training other adults with Down syndrome in self-advocacy. I’m blown away.

Ashley by Design: popular clothing for people with Down syndrome, created by designer Ashley DeRamus, who has Down syndrome

Troy Made It: Pottery! Follow him on Instagram (click here) for updates. He has a shop on Etsy that sells out fast (so stay tuned!)

Allie Art: Holy Mother of WOW! Allie’s art is gorgeous! Vibrant, color-rich and reasonably-priced. She has jewelry, too.

Bradley’s Blocks: all kinds of super-cool pet art, leash gear and more. If you love dogs, this is your stop.

On the heals of great art featuring dogs is Doggie Delights, by Allison. They make healthy dog food and treats!

Designs by Lupita – Dynamic, popping stuff: really lovely. Lupita has prints and more for sale on her site.


Oliver Hellowell Photography –
Gorgeous photos. Lots of nature-shots.

Bath Bombs by Morgan Tibbens: Outstanding variety of “bath bombs” (these things you put into the bath to make your experience there something fragrantly divine). Check out the “Down Syndrome Bath Bomb“!!

b9ff6f5724f3fb413c5c1cd294a635d5Christian Royal Pottery:

Gorgeous, gorgeous pottery. Those leaves?! The designs? Brilliant! I think his slogan should be, “Stoneware with Impeccable Charm.”

snow-in-norway-4Tazia Fawley: She makes cut-outs and paintings that are simply vibrant and bursting with energy. She is also the famous artist who gave Prince George one of her paintings, which was displayed in his nursery.

 

Geoffrey Mikol has an outstanding online shop, Riverbend Galleries, with images that he takes. Photos, calendars and more.

 andrewweatherly_winterworlds_largeArtlifting: Dreamy, often abstract art from the brilliant Andrew Weatherly. He has a wide collection of everything from rainbow swirls to sunrises.

 

Megalogy: Megan Bomgaars is one of my favorites from the hit series, “Born This Way,” because she reminds me a lot of my daughter, Moxie. She is also a total rockstar of creative awesomeness, selling everything from her hand-dyed silk scarves to yoga pants. Be sure to check out her capsule collection with Sanrio – Hello Kitty + “Don’t Limit Me” = pure radness!

Poppin’ Joes: Gourmet kettle corn by Joe! Yum.

John’s Crazy Socks is a little company that is going big. All the socks, all the time, and with a sock subscription service too!

…and!

 

2. Down Syndrome Related Small Businesses

This is, small businesses run by families, friends or allies of an individual with Down syndrome (- this usually means family!)

  • Ry’s Ties: socks and ties, pretty cool!
  • Maya’s Adventures: lovely series of books about a little girl with Down syndrome.
  • Mt. Lebanon Soap Company: handmade soaps and bath bombs!
  • 4Peace Art: Two little girls – sisters of a young boy with Down syndrome – sell cards on Etsy and a portion of profit is donated to NDSC.
  • Kroc Co Paper Shop: All things paper! Super fun
  • Mighty Moose Alters: Very exciting shop: the mom modifies backpacks, purses, and diaper bags to accommodate feeding tubes, and is slowly getting into adaptive clothing as well – YESSSSS!
  • Cristina’s Tortina Shop: cupcakes, cakes & speciality treats made by a mom of an individual with Down syndrome, and who hires people with Down syndrome.
  • Reason to Bake: gluten free morsels of cookie deliciousness

Coffee:

 

T-Shirts:

3. Businesses That Hire Down Syndrome

Ever want to know what businesses have a good track record with disability?

That is, that recruit, hire and retain employees with disabilities, that support accommodation and more?

Here are a few resources:

a) Glassdoor’s report on the best states and companies for hiring people with disabilities. This is not disability-specific, but we know that Down syndrome will be included in this report.

The report is linked here.

b) Check out the Return on Disability Group

They have deeply analyzed almost every aspect of employment and disability within major firms, and make it easy for you to decide where you want your money to go.

Added to that, they cover both the United States and Canada.

c). According to the Facebook Hive, (meaning, just informal asking around on Facebook!), the big companies that are doing well in hiring people with Down syndrome:
  • Trader Joes
  • Publix
  • Walgreens
  • CVS
  • Petco
  • Safeway
  • Kroger
  • Wegman’s
  • Amazon (maybe Down syndrome; definitely for intellectual disability)
 
 

One Final Note

Please share this post and support businesses with a positive connection to Down  syndrome in particular and disability in general.

Remember that our dollars speak the language of business by highlighting the need and desire for inclusion and acceptance, and they speak clearly and loudly.

Feel free to leave links in the comments section to businesses that have not been included.

Thank you!

 
 
Many thanks to Missy Skavlem for her 2013 post, “Businesses Owned by People with Down syndrome“, and Michelle with her 2012 post, “21 Days of Giveaways.”
 
 
 
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Meriah
Meriah Nichols is a career counselor, teacher and blogger. Single mom to 3 (one with Down syndrome, one gifted 2E), she is also a cat-loving Trekkie who likes her coffee hot and black.
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  1. Great list!

    Have a look at Johns Crazy Socks! Their original Mighty story was viewed over 20M Times.

    http://www.johnscrazysocks.com

    This amazing business is owned by a man with Down syndrome, they give back to a different charity every month and employ people with Down Syndrome. They fit all 3 categories!! X

    1. Awesome list! How do you get on this list? I’m an artist and author. I do napkin drawings about all the achievements and milestones my daughter does and have written and illustrated a book about her adventures to the library. It’s very much about empowering each individual for their uniqueness. It is also a great social story for people who may be anxious about new experiences. I’m writing a dentist book next. Check my work out at mayasadventurebooks.com

  2. I have bought several of the Group Hug shirts over the years — they’re just great! And I own two of Oliver Hellowell’s photos, framed and hanging in my office. They’re beautiful, and his coffee book is a work of art in addition to the photos inside it. Great, great list! Happy holidays, everyone!

  3. This is wonderful!! Feel free to add My Little Sunshine Face to your list. It is a book series that I wrote dedicated to children with Down syndrome and their parents. My son, Ashton, is the main character and he was born with DOwn syndrome. The series instilled in children that they are “wonderfully made” based on Psalm 139:13-14 and as each book celebrates everything our children are including their extra chromosome.. each book has activities for them to do and was created to help aid in cognitive, psychological, and motor skills development. They also have speech and motor skills therapy ideas to utilize with your child as you enjoy the book together. I hope someday as my son gets older he will help with this business and then I can pass it on to him. Right now he is the face and inspiration that little kids get to meet at my book signings or speaking events and they get excited they met they friend in the book! http://www.mylittlesunshineface.com

  4. How about Ashley DeRamus down syndrome advocate
    Who founded Ashley by design and the Ashley DeRamus foundation
    Awarded Ndsc advocate of the year
    NDSS Champion of Change
    IDS Advocate of the year.
    BABBAL Disney blog one of 6 entapanure of the year.

    And supports #DSWORKS

  5. We are proud to have our own Crumley Family Dreamers Coffee & Tea business, selling premium, Fair Trade coffee which employs individuals of ALL abilities working in an inclusive environment for fair wages! My son and business partner, John Michael, is 10 and has Down syndrome. He loves selling Dreamers with me.
    Our website is http://www.Dreamers-CrumleyFamily.com
    With every purchase with a purpose, you help the dream come true!

  6. Thank you for making this list. I make dog treats that are healthy for dogs. I make Chicken and Rice, Grain Free Sweet Potato, Pumpkin, and Peanut Butter treats. My parents are my sidekicks. I was on Rachael Ray and I will be going to New York to bake dog treats with her!

  7. Thank you for including Ry’s Ties. I’m the Chief Inclusion Officer and I will let you know that James-Ryan is 100% a part of his business. Aside from paying taxes he orders, ships, makes deliveries, goes to the bank, counts money, and goes to market to make selections. He does set up and tear down at pop up events, sells, attends networking opportunities, and is the sole brand rep.
    In 2020, he will be designing his own line of ties and socks.

    I would like to bring to your attention three other businesses.

    1.Austin’s Underdawgs…. It’s a mobile food truck available for events in North Texas. Austin is very much a part of leading this business.

    2. Coffee.N.Crumbs, is a mobile coffee shop in a remodeled vintage trailer that has hired individuals with Down Syndrome. Check out their mission and vision on Instagram. They are also in North Texas and available for events.

    3. Blake’s Snow Shack is a mobile shaved ice truck in North Texas

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