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by Bill Radford

Colorado Springs, CO – Laurie Derickson’s quest for a stylish hat for her little girl has spawned a growing business for the Colorado Springs woman.

And her daughter, Marili Jean, age 1 1/2, has pretty much all the hats she could ever want.
Derickson, who is also the mom of two young boys, started Marili Jean Accessories last year as an online business selling hats, barrettes and headbands “for the little diva.”

“I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit,” said Derickson, 32, who has left her job as a school counselor at Harrison School District 2 to focus on her kids and her business. As she grows her business, she’s also hoping to help other moms with that same spirit through a new local venture.

The idea for Marili Jean Accessories came to Derickson when she had trouble finding a hat she liked for her daughter. She eventually ordered one online, but the experience convinced her of the need for a fashionable yet functional line for young children — and fanned her desire to have her own business.

She read books on starting businesses and worked with Springs-based 720Media to create her website. Derickson designs the hats, which are made by overseas companies.

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