Get to know the owners of Millie Bo Peep

Get to know the owners of Millie Bo Peep

One of the newest businesses to join the downtown community is Millie Bo Peep a children’s boutique, we sit down with the owners Tina and James to find out all about trendy clothing and unique gift options for children and everything else about their fantastic store.

You have just opened this past March, how has the response been?
Amazing. We are floored at how much love and support the community has shown us.  Our hearts are so full!

Photos by Donny Stancato

What goes into picking out your merchandise for your store?
In the very early stages of planning Millie Bo Peep, we had done some market research in our area. We surveyed local parents and grandparents (and gift givers) what they were hoping to see at Millie Bo Peep. From our market research, we were able to choose the products and brands that the community wanted!  We spend a lot of time meeting with brands and curating the inventory.  A few times a year we travel to market shows to find the newest trends to bring in – sometimes picking things out almost a year in advance!

Also what brands do you offer?
Posh Peanut, Mayoral, Angel Dear, Kyte Baby, Rylee + Cru, Quincy Mae, Copper Pearl, Itzy Ritzy, Fridababy, Freshly Picked, Kindred Bravely, and so much more!

Photos by Donny Stancato

What do you love about Downtown Kenosha?
The sense of community and the lake. From the day we started construction, business owners have stopped by, sent messages, and some even dropped off welcome gifts.  There are so many good things happening down here! 

Tina, you went from a public defender to the owner of a children’s boutique,  that’s quite a career change, what has been most challenging and rewarding with the switch?
The most challenging step was taking an unknown leap of faith. My day-to-day life has been totally different. I no longer have coworkers and had to learn new skills rather quickly. I had to learn marketing, purchasing, bookkeeping, accounting, inventory management, website development, and much more.  I’m still learning how to wear all of these hats.  I’ve started building relationships with customers, vendors, and manufacturers  – all while being a mom of 2 and a wife. Life has certainly been busy, but my mind has never felt healthier, and my heart has never been so overjoyed!  What is most rewarding is meeting the people that visit the store! It’s been great getting to know the people in our community – and meeting their cute kids!

Photos by Donny Stancato

James, you also own a handyman business, how do you balance your time between that and the store?
Thankfully, our team at Odd Job Larry is incredible and they stepped up a ton while we were getting close to opening, allowing me to spend a lot of time here.  They completed our buildout at the store and we’re amazed at how it turned out.   The pride they take in their work is unmatched.  Now that the store is up and running, you’ll find me most days at Odd Job Larry, but every now and then you may find me here on the weekend or during the week around lunch time. :-

What’s next for you both and Millie Bo Peep?
We plan to be here for a long time!  We’re excited to see Downtown Kenosha continue to flourish and we’re excited to be a part of it.  And who knows… maybe you’ll see us bring something else new to Kenosha down the road! We have a 9 month old son, MJ, and it would only be fair to have a business named after him, too!

Photo by Donny Stancato

WEB EXTRA w/ Tina & James

Where did you go on your first date?
We went on our first date to Olive Garden back in the summer of 2006!  James brought me flowers and courted me like a true gentleman!

Favorite place for a date night?
Ruffalo’s II. This is where we got engaged!

Favorite pizza topping?
Tina: Pepperoni
James: Sausage, garlic & giardiniera on the side.

Favorite musician?
Tina: Morgan Wallan
James: George Strait

Favorite tv show & movie?
Tina: TV show- The Office, Movie-Grease
James TV Show- The Office, Movie: Tommy Boy 

Favorite hobby?
We both love to go camping! James likes fishing and bourbon hunting.

iPhone or Samsung?

Cat or dog person?
Dogs – we have an 8 year old yorkie and a 13 year old black lab/german shephard mix

Go to karaoke song?
Tina: Paradise by the Dashboard Light by Meatloaf.
James: You Never Even Called Me By My Name by David Allen Coe

Millie Bo Peep is located at 5720 6th Avenue
(262) 455-7976
Follow them on Facebook & Instagram 

Q&A and photos by Donny Stancato

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(This article first appeared in Vol 16. #2 2023 Go Downtown Kenosha Magazine)