The Mommie Experience officially opened with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday, April 14. The business has various backdrops where customers can take pictures or videos for social media. The Mommie Experience is also available as a rental space for customers to host parties and other events.
Nichole Johnson, Ladonna Bradford and Kesha Williams said they got the idea for the Mommie Experience when talking to each other on the phone. The owners said they’ve been friends since childhood and wanted to start a business together.
Johnson said the Mommie Experience was inspired by the Trap Music Museum in Atlanta, Georgia, and other selfie museums that have been opening across the country.
“All of the people who have done this they have been very successful. Because it’s social media-driven and social media’s kind of running the world,” Johnson said.
Near the entrance of the Mommie Experience is a wall with hundreds of photos of mothers and their kids. The words “it’s the mommies for me” are spelled out in green letters near the top of the collage followed by a drawing of red lips.
The Mommie Experience received the pictures for the collage after they posted requests for photos on their Instagram page. Some of the photos were submitted by the parents themselves and others were submitted by their offspring, Johnson said.
All the backdrops inside the selfie museum are centered on or related to the theme of motherhood. This includes a backdrop called Mommy in Love which has red rose petals on a mostly green backdrop. The backdrop also has a sign that says, “Will you Marry Me?” and a white bench with red lips painted on it.
Another backdrop where customers can take selfies is called Mommy Disarray, and it’s made up almost entirely of dark colors, with a few splashes of brightly colored musical notes and other images. Johnson called this display a visual representation of when a mother is “trying to get back to herself” after having a baby, especially when experiencing post-partum depression.
Other backdrops include Mommy the Protector, Mommy’s Night Out, Mommy Treats, the Money Room and a backdrop for those who lost a mother or child. The owners said there will be a seasonal backdrop that will be changed to fit upcoming holidays.
Customers can rent the space for an hour if they want to take pictures or videos in front of the available backdrops. The space is also available for four hours or more for customers who are hosting events. Customers can purchase balloons and balloon arrangements for events held at the Mommie Experience or elsewhere.
“The events that we’ll probably get in here are […] baby showers, women empowerment type of meetings, bridal showers or any type of women’s stuff,” Johnson said. “I don’t think a man probably wants a birthday party in here. But if we throw it for him, he probably would like it.”
The Mommie Experience is at 3327 Vollmer Road, Suite B. The hours are Wednesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. On Monday and Tuesday, they’re open by appointment only.
With the opening of the Mommie Experience, Flossmoor Commons has gone from having approximately 40% empty storefronts to the retail space operating at full capacity, Flossmoor Mayor Michelle Nelson said.