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Pinstripes and Polkadots

Pinstripes and Polkadots is Central Illinois’ exclusive natural parenting shop specializing in cloth diapers, babywearing, and a collection of safe, natural products for growing families.

First conceived of by Sarah Gesiakowski in 2002, Pinstripes and Polkadots began as one of the first online cloth diapering shops on the internet. The current owner, Katie Largent, acquired the business in 2018 after attending a free cloth diapering class. The mother of three was fascinated by the caring approach, prioritization of safe quality products, and focus on family. She felt that both the business’ core values and her goals of natural parenting were aligned. Katie continues Pinstripes and Polkadots’ 19-year tradition of supporting parents and caregivers in the community.

After about a year of ownership, Katie realized that she could use some assistance in understanding the ins and outs of social media marketing and turned to the Illinois Small Business Development Center of McLean County at Illinois Wesleyan University (SBDC) for help. The SBDC gave Katie a business review with multiple suggested marketing and advertising strategies, in addition to support in bookkeeping skills. After helping focus her daily/weekly/monthly/quarterly goals, Katie has seen an increase in followers, engagement, and an upward trend in sales.

As a local Mom-owned small business, Pinstripes and Polkadots understands the importance of community and is passionately dedicated to giving back to local non-profits in Bloomington- Normal that support women and children. Pinstripes and Polkadots has proudly supported The Baby Fold, including sponsoring their Annual Festival of Trees. She also supports the Bloomington-Normal Children’s Home and Aid Crisis Nursery, Mid-Central Community Action’s Neville House Shelter, Child Protection Network, and The Cloth Option.

Opening a brick and mortar store in 2018 was a difficult transition, but Katie’s hard work, determination, and passion for her work was instrumental in Pinstripes and Polkadot’s success. She wants to continue providing the Bloomington-Normal community with the best, quality products and services that support and encourage families in making cloth diapering and babywearing a loving, safe and successful experience for all. Visit her website, , to learn more about Katie, Pinstripes and Polkadots, and the world of natural parenting.

Contact the SBDC at for more information on how we can help your business.


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