Elly Chatten is the innovator behind Chattybug Apparel’s signature “Grow With Me” romper design. The romper comes in three sizes – 3-12 months (size 1), 1-3 years (size 2), and 3-6 years (size 3) – and is handcrafted with snap shoulders, an adjustable drawstring inside to tighten and loosen the length, and extra-long foldable cuffs. “I was obsessed from the second I saw it,” said Chatten. “I love anything that lasts longer than one season.”
Based in California, Chatten, a self-taught seamstress, launched Chattybug Apparel after the birth of her oldest daughter nearly seven years ago. The shop name is a play on Chatten’s last name and her daughter’s nickname “Bug.” “Back then we only made bows,” Chatten shared. “I had bought so many bows that fell apart and was discouraged, so I decided I could do better. At first, I had no intention of selling but people began asking for them.” Chattybug has since expanded to include custom apparel for both genders, including leggings (for tots and mamas), tank tops, raglans, shorts, bummies, rompers, leotards, headbands, and more. “Sometimes, I’m just amazed at how far I’ve come from bows and headbands.”
Chattybug Apparel is known for its Disney-inspired graphic patterns and for mixing different custom knit fabric panels to create unique designs. I asked Chatten to name her favorite Disney movie and she offered “a toss up between Fox and the Hound and Robin Hood.” Both good choices. Her own personal style is a little less Disney princess though: “I would say it is ‘mom life’ mixed with ‘small shop boss life,’” Chatten joked. “It’s all about comfort these days. I spend my time running around from pick up to drop off and sewing in between. But I love every single bit of it.”
Chatten’s children also provide inspiration for Chattybug’s designs. “My kids influence everything, from which style we use to what fabrics we buy,” she explained. “They put every style through the comfort test and personally chose many of the fabrics I buy. My son is very particular about clothing and fit, so being able to appeal to him means the world.” For Chatten, the best part is seeing the photographs posted online of other stylish little ones in Chattybug designs. “My kids are so proud telling people, ‘my mom made it’ whenever anyone asks.”
Chatten generally drops limited fabric designs on Fridays at 5:30pm “Disneyland time” and opens the shop regularly for pre-orders for other upcoming fabrics releases and ready-to-ship items. View pictures of all the Chattybug styles and current fabric offerings in the Chattybug Apparel VIP Facebook group here or on the Chattybug website.