Phnewfula Frederiksen had so much trouble finding an ecofriendly baby store where she could shop for her two children, now ages seven and 13, that she launched her own in 2009. Originally online-only, Happy Mango opened its first brick-and-mortar in Kirkwood in 2016—offering clothing and equipment for babies and kids, pregnant women, and new moms. “I created the place I would have wanted to shop,” she says. She named the store in honor of her father’s native St. Thomas—her family’s happy place, where, she says, people love mangos.
This year, Happy Mango moved to the Works, doubling its size to 2,000 square feet. Frederiksen previously stocked upscale brands like UPPAbaby, Ergobaby, and Babyletto and has now added more, including European lines such as British baby-equipment maker Silver Cross and Scandinavian children’s clothing, toys, and decor brand Konges Sløjd. “Europe has higher safety standards than the U.S., so their toys tend to be safer and way less toxic,” she says.
Unlike big-box retailers, Happy Mango offers merchandise that is sustainable and ecofriendly and, sometimes, locally sourced. Frederiksen also likes to support Black- or woman-owned businesses. A bonus is that many of these lines are nonelectronic and beautifully made.
For Frederiksen, personalized customer service is a priority. For example, she’s a certified passenger-safety technician, which means she is trained to install car seats properly. “About 59 percent of all car seats are installed incorrectly,” she says. “I’ve seen so many [attached wrongly]. But no one would willingly install their car seat incorrectly.” She ensures that any car seat purchased from Happy Mango is put into place securely—all part of her mission to educate parents about products she offers. 1295 Chattahoochee Avenue, happymango.com
This article appears in our April 2022 issue.