Following the example of her father, who served over 25 years in the U.S. Army, Mary Andersen, owner of Cheeky Baby Boutique, decided to serve our country. So in 2006, after graduating from high school, she enlisted in the Marine Corps, serving for over a decade.
Upon her honorable discharge, Mary would continue her career in a corporate environment, mostly in the legal and operations sectors. However, after 14 years of working and commuting to the Atlanta area from Bartow County, she and her husband, Stephen, also a veteran, decided it was time for a change. “After working for so many years for other people, I was ready to make an opportunity for myself and my family,” Andersen said.
When the family relocated to Rome in 2017, they were ready to begin their new venture. After research and reflection, they realized the need for a store that offered products for children and their parents. Also, drawing on the inspiration of their children, they wanted to help families and friends celebrate babies and children. So they created a vision for such an outlet. Cheeky Baby Boutique opened on Broad Street in June 2020 and has been a destination location since. When asked about the business’s name, Mary says, “Well, the first time I met my children, I couldn’t stop staring at them, especially their cheeks. There is something about baby cheeks that beg you to squeeze them. If you’re lucky, you just may get a cheeky little smile! The joy that comes from that face is something every parent knows. So how could we name the store after anything else?”
The stylish boutique offers popular lines of furniture and gear, clothing, shoes, and accessories. While customers will find the same products in big box stores, the superior personalized service sets Cheeky Baby apart. In addition, one of the most significant aspects of Andersen’s business model is to empower employees to excel, “It is my goal to allow each employee to be a hero for their customer,” said Mary. The staff is there to fulfill the customer’s needs and wants. Most of the store’s inventory has been selected based on customer feedback and requests.
Recently, the couple purchased an 8,000-square-foot warehouse to help the company have more merchandise for their customers. In the past, some inventory’s arrival was delayed due to supply chain issues. The addition of the warehouse will help combat that in the future.
In running her business, Andersen has drawn on skills from her military experience. Some of those skills include creating and executing a plan and being willing to review and change course based on results. She looks forward to creating sustainable growth for the company as it serves the community.
Cheeky Baby Boutique is located at 306 Broad Street. They may also be found on social media and also at cheekybabyboutique.com.