For Alexandra Wallace-Currie, knitting started as a pastime to help her cope with her own stage 2, grade 2 breast cancer. Now thankfully cancer-free, Alex has turned her personal tragedy and design talent into a passionate commitment to help others. With A Little Square, a retail shop in Fairfield, CT, and The Pink Pom-Pom Project (PPPP), a crafting for emotional therapy initiative she launched, Alex has created an enviable profit for non-profit business model. While The PPPP initiative has several successful charity programs, A Little Square sells well-known brands along with Alex’s exclusive designs and original Sprouts Hair Care Collection, which has a huge celebrity following. The shop is also the setting for several crafting events and private parties. CBT had the pleasure of speaking with Alex recently, and it is our honor to share her impressive story with you.
CBT: When did you open A Little Square?
Alex: I got married in 2001, had my first child in April 2003, and moved to London in November of that year. I started A Little Square LLC shortly after, selling mainly online and at holiday shows and markets. I opened the Fairfield store in October 2012.
CBT: What is your mission?
Alex: Sales from the retail part of A Little Square go directly to support The Pink Pom-Pom Project. It is a modern version of a charity shop. Instead of selling used, old clothing and accessories, however, we sell contemporary, quality, high-end products and goods. We also teach sewing and knitting classes, and host birthday parties and private events, all for profit. Profits from sales provide crafting materials, equipment, and instruction for classes we teach to inner city youth, cancer survivors, and the Girl Scouts of Connecticut. Helping and teaching inner city youth, cancer survivors, and Girl Scouts is my passion. Offering crafting as a means of therapy to these groups helps them by providing a platform of creativity. We provide the materials, equipment, and instruction, and it’s up to them to put it together.
CBT: How do you choose what products you will carry?
Alex: I select products that appeal to me and that I think my kids would like. I usually purchase items that inspire me but are hopefully not all over the country in thousands of stores. Some of the brands we carry are Sweet Kids Girls & Communion dresses; Axel & Hudson Boys clothing; Morgan & Milo children’s shoes; Angel Dear blankies and pillows; GUND; Dumpling Dynasty; Rockin Robin bracelets; Cupcake and Cartwheel ribbon watches; Fashion Angels tween gifts; Kids Kraft toys; Melissa & Doug; and Sesame Street stuffed animals. I also design and make Tallula Buttercup dresses and tutus, Alphabulous baby clothing and The PPPP Fairy Dust.
CBT: Who wears your apparel and accessories?
Alex: Rachel McAdams, Angelina Jolie and Jessica Chastain have all received a product we created for The PPPP called Forever Pink by Denise Manning. It is a Shagreen cuff in sterling silver and pave diamante, shaped like a pom-pom. My mother is a friend of Rachel McAdams and she confirmed Rachel’s wearing it. Sinitta, Simon Cowell’s ex-girlfriend, and Kate Hudson are fans, and billionaire Peter Jones from the Dragon’s Den TV show is a huge fan, too. He mentioned a story about my store and a product he had flown all the way to Portugal for his two year old daughter. It was priceless!
CBT: What’s ahead for A Little Square and The PPPP?
Alex: We expect to expand this year to the Upper East Side of New York City. A friend of mine wants to head The PPPP in her church, and craft with kids and start a knitting group for cancer survivors. I fully expect to franchise this business model. I do have another city I would like to focus on but I need to travel there to start the process. In terms of products, my Tallula Buttercup will grow into a full collection of dresses, tops, and bottoms. I would like to wholesale it, too, hopefully this year.
If anyone can do it all, it’s Alex! This highly accomplished cancer-survivor, mom, entrepreneur and designer speaks four languages—English, French, Spanish and German—and has worked with many well-known European and American designers. Professional highlights include working in fashion sales with Due Per Due, Alberta Ferretti, Cynthia Steffe, and Cynthia O’Connor, as well as with Interior Designer Alexandra Champalimaud.
Visit A Little Square’s flagship store at 1981 Post Road in Fairfield, CT. Alex is extending the CBT tribe a 20 percent discount on purchases. Just mention CBT when you visit the shop and, if you aren’t on the east coast, no worries. Visit A Little Square online and enter code CBT2014 at checkout for the same generous discount!