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Meet Jamara Ghalayini of Pumpkinheads in Brentwood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jamara Ghalayini.

Jamara resides in Calabasas, California with her daughter Ofelia and their 3 dogs Bear, Ollie, and Henry Michael. Prior to founding Pumpkinheads in September 2005, Jamara worked as a Senior Business Consultant for Deloitte Consulting in Los Angeles. While working as a consultant she began volunteering in local schools through Junior Achievement educating children on the importance of community, education and the economy. It was the first day of the JA program that changed her life forever. She worked with children that were in desperate need of books, clothing and food. The shocking poverty level of these Angeleno children inspired her to commit to developing a plan to help.

In the spring of 2005 Jamara created a business plan to launch Pumpkinheads and make a real change by creating a continuous revenue stream for local children’s charities. The high-end boutique, located in the luxurious Brentwood neighborhood (with neighbors such as Tavern, SugarFish and SoulCycle) of Los Angeles, California, opened September 1, 2005 and offers the finest in children’s clothing, accessories and gifts. Pumpkinheads has become a celebrity favorite appearing weekly in magazines featuring various celebrity shoppers picking up their favorite brands like Molo, Scotch & Soda, Lili Gaufrette, Paul Smith Jr. and More. Pumpkinheads is also frequently featured on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and many other television and film productions. The boutique boasts the most sought-after collection of fine children’s clothing from Europe and the USA.

Currently, Pumpkinheads is an official collection center for Baby2Baby offering a convenient location to drop off new and gently used items for babies and children. There is a bi-weekly pick-up and donations are accepted daily. Please check for a list of accepted items.

Jamara is devoted to the idea of making a real and measurable difference in the lives of children in their community. As of September 2016, Pumpkinheads fund raising efforts have generated more than $400,000 through their charitable endeavors including Operation School Bell, The March of Dimes, ArtShare LA, Good Beginnings (Cedars Sinai NICU), The Help Group, Baby2Baby, Children’s Action Network and No Limits and their newest charity partner Present Now. It is her hope that Pumpkinheads will inspire many and help many more in the process. For more information on how you can make an immediate difference that will literally change the life of a child, contact them at 310-207-6760. Let them know how they can help you help change the future for the kids in our community!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
We have been fortunate to have an exploding high-end retail environment around us. Since opening in 2005 we have been joined by luxe neighbors such as SoulCycle, BlueMercury, Tavern, Baltaire, and Earthbar. This has brought in new clients and great exposure.

The biggest struggle has been switching gears to accommodate our new younger, hipper clientele! We started out with mostly a 60-year-old+ clientele shopping for grandchildren. As our new neighbors opened around us, it has brought in a younger hip mom shopping for her own children and party gifts. We have had to switch gears and seek out more trend based items and with many of our clients in several times a month, we have to frequently replenish and update merchandise.

Please tell us about Pumpkinheads.
We specialize in high end luxury children’s clothing. Many imported brands but now we also feature several luxe domestic brands as well such as Imoga, Terez and IScream. We are very well known for our boys department as it is one of the largest in the luxury children’s market. Our inventory covers Newborn – 16 Years!

We are most proud of our contributions to our charity partners. Currently we have key relationships with Present Now, Baby2Baby, No Limits, and The Help Group. To date we have raised/donated over 400K in funding for our partners. Additionally, we have had a great time bringing awareness to these fabulous foundations and several clients have become notable donors.

Our customer services are excellent. We offer private shopping appointments daily and service a large number of clients via private shopping communication. Appointments are also available outside of business hours.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
When I dug a massive hole in our brand new front yard that had just been covered with fresh sod. It looked beautiful but I was upset we didn’t put in a pool. I dug a deep hole the size of a large hot top and tore open black lawn trash bags, lined the edges and bottom and filled it with water from the hose. I was so proud and sat in it for hours until my dad came home from work and just stopped short of a small heart attack. I wasn’t punished because he said I had put in so much good planning and effort and liked that I did it myself.

That, or the time I cleaned my mom’s brand-new silver Buick station wagon with 409 cleaners because I thought that would get it really really clean. It was about 88 degrees outside and the sun was beating down. The second I sprayed the hood, it turned the paint from metallic silver to almost a white gray. I thought that was clean so I proceeded to do the whole hood. It was clean, but the paint was also gone!

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Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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