by Catherine Villarreal
Our story began in 2018 when my husband and I were planning our own wedding. I was born and raised in a small town south of London where most of my extended family still reside. I dreamed of being married where my parents were wed over thirty years ago in a beautiful 12th century church in Ifield, England. One of the hardest parts of living so far away is not being able to see my family more often. We are fortunate enough that we have been able to travel home once a year to visit our family in England and those few weeks a year are absolutely priceless. I desperately wanted all of our family’s littles to be a part of our special day too. I also knew having a destination wedding would mean that our friends and family who planned to travel for our celebration would likely want to bring their children and make a vacation out of it.
Not having children at the time, I was surprised to be met with some hesitation when I invited all 20 children to our wedding day. We knew our day wouldn’t be the same without every single one of them being there, and I wanted to make sure the children were well entertained. We made entertainment boxes for the tables, had toys and games, an ice cream truck and they all had a blast!
Our lives changed forever when we became parents in 2020 with our eldest, Amelia, and again in 2022 with Madilyn. We first traveled back to England in 2021 with Amelia when I was pregnant with Madilyn, and instead of the usual pubs we normally frequented, we started to explore more child friendly places. This was our first real encounter with Soft Play. We returned the following year with both our daughters and seeing the joy and fun they would have in these child-friendly play spaces just made my mama heart so happy.
I was inspired to start something that was mobilized and could be set up anywhere that children may be in attendance. I thought back to my wedding and realized that the parents may not have had as much hesitation if such a play space had been available at the wedding to keep the little ones entertained allowing them to enjoy the celebration, too.
In January, 2023, I decided that I was ready to jump in and create Little Poppets Play, a mobile luxury Soft Play rental perfect for any special occasion. Our Soft Play areas are ideal for birthday parties, showers, weddings, play dates, and so much more. Soft Play is a great way for babies and toddlers to explore obstacles, enhance gross motor skills, and strengthen confidence in climbing and crawling. All of our equipment is made of commercial grade soft and sturdy foam giving our clients the peace of mind that their little poppets will be safe adventuring. We officially launched in July of 2023 and are so ready to be a part of your next event!