At a popular Manhattan diner, Patricia Walsh measures a woman with her glance. “Zebra print,” she states flatly after not more than a second of consideration. “Or a scull and bones. On a black background.” The match seems spot-on.
Patricia is the founder and CEO of Cart Art, Inc., the only American company providing custom-designed shopping / laundry carts. If you ever doubted that fashion will not let one aspect of life remain un-prettified in a city like New York, here’s a living proof. From applying a picture of a panda bear, to a picture of your dog, cat or a family member, you can now make your shopping cart sport a customized outfit. Can you hear those fashionistas squeal?
The idea started brewing a year ago after an occurrence which could only be labeled as a shopaholic’s epiphany.
“I was shopping one day, in my neighborhood in Riverdale , N.Y.,” says Patricia, “, and I realized that my cart was very boring.”
Fair enough given that the founder of Cart Art is s chic, fashion savvy New Yorker with years of experience in the beauty and fashion industry.
After going on-line and originally looking for clip-on panels to decorate her cart, Patricia realized that such a bric-à-brac didn’t exist. A spur of the moment is the mother of all invention. A few months later Patricia Walsh was holding a patent making her the only person in the world allowed to produce decorative clip-on cart panels. She applied it immediately, but the fashion thirst wasn’t quenched there.
“People were responding to it when I went shopping,” says Patricia and recalls how other fashion-conscious or otherwise aesthetically-minded souls would stop her on the street and ask where did she get that cute cart. The demand was there, all she needed to do was satisfy it. And that’s what she did. Weeks later, Cart Art Inc.– a child of practicality and aesthetic vanity—was born. With the exquisite help of its main manufacturer, an established New York graphic designer and interior decorator Felix Rodriguez, Patricia is starting to conquer the U.S. and already turning her gaze towards China.
“I’m starting now on a small scale– launching the website; but I’m hoping for the best,” says Patricia.
Walsh, an aesthetician by education, was showing gumption for fashion and design early on. She was an exclusive interior decorator of her mother’s real estate office and she had hosted fashion shows in the past, including the most recent one with her new Cart Art collection, presented splendidly by a team of drag queens in a popular New York City venue.
She didn’t prove to be a bad business woman either. Cart Art is already catching the eye of investors as well as local businesses that order carts by dozens to place their logos on them, creating one-of-a-kind movable advertisements. Soon Cart Art will hit retail stores like Bed, Bath & Beyond, K-Mart and Target, as well as local convenience stores. The two visionaries also anticipate appearing on local flea markets and farmers markets bringing along their fashionable carts and hosting give-aways.
Everything was thought of. You can buy a whole cart with a panel of choice, or just the panel in various sizes depending on the size of your cart—allowing yourself to change the design together with your changing mood. Their company motto is: “Everything should be beautiful.”
“I have not met one person who wouldn’t tell me that it’s a good idea,” boasts Patricia, all radiance and energy. “That’s what validates it for me,” she adds. “We’re anticipating Cart Art to turn the traditional ‘granny’ grocery/ laundry cart into a stylish shopping staple for city dwellers all over the world.”
Keep an eye out for the buzz on the new website launch party.