Meet Mina Yoo, Inventor of the Qlipter

"Meet Mina Yoo, Inventor of the Qlipter"Meet Mina Yoo, Mom, Business Woman, Inventor

• Tell us about your invention? What does problem does it solve?

Unlimited utility in one super clip. One early reviewer called it, “ingenious” and “infinitely useful for campers and anyone living on earth.” The Qlipter is a multi-purpose tool that combines inventive design with function. A re-imagined carabiner clip, the Qlipter has a 360 degree rotating hook that swivels to allow you to hang your gear securely over just about any surface. The tapere nose fits into narrow openings and the clip stays securely closed with a securely placed magnet and rubber gripper. The Qlipter can hold up to 50lbs.

The Qlipter solves the problem of not having enough hands to handle all of your gear at once. We like to call Qlipter the ultimate “life hack” because it genuinely makes life easier by allowing you to keep your hands free while hanging your gear safely and securely.

• What was the inspiration for your invention?

There were twp events that inspired me to create the Qlipter. The first event was the birth of my son. As most moms know, going anywhere with a baby is hard and you never have enough hands to hold onto your child and all of their gear. Instead of having to put bags on the ground, I wanted a way to be able to hang a bag so that I could hold onto my son and still keep his gear within my reach.

The second inspirational event was when I was summiting Mt. Rainier. During our training hikes, I wished that I had a way to hang my backpack so that I didn’t have to put in on the muddy ground. Carrying a wet, muddy backpack for miles is really unpleasant! I searched the market high and low and just couldn’t find anything that would work. These 2 events inspired me to create the Qlipter.

• At what stage in the invention process are you?

The Qlipter launched as a Kickstarter project in April 2014 and received almost 4 times the original funding goal. After our goal was reached, we went into production and currently sell the Qlipter on our website and through various retail outlets. This summer, the Qlipter will make its debut in several large retailers.

• What is the number one goal you have with regards to your invention?

I am all about efficiency and making the most of the time we have and getting the most enjoyment out of everything we do. My number one goal for the Qlipter is to get it into the hands of everyone who leads an active life so that they can do whatever they do more easily, more conveniently and more enjoyably. I am also using my experience gained through this invention and its related inventions to launch a new initiative that will turn moms’ ideas into products with little effort on their parts (we all know how busy moms are). Moms have such great product ideas, but they don’t always have the time, desire, funds or know-how to get their ideas to market. I think this is a true shame for all of us consumers, and I intend to change this.

• Who is your product for (target market)?

Our target market is large because we feel that the Qlipter has uses and makes life easier for just about everyone. Currently, we are specifically targeting parents, outdoor enthusiasts and travelers.

• How long did your invention take to get to this point (from the time you conceived of the idea to now)?

It took 3 years!

• When you had your idea, what was the first thing you did?

The first thing I did was to sketch out a design, and then keep sketching until I came up with a design that could be turned into a crude prototype using moldable plastic. My second step was to hire a local blacksmith to create one for me in metal. I used whatever I could find at the hardware store to make sure that the concept was sound. Here is a rough timeline in product development.
"Qlipter Product development Timeline"

• What has been the greatest challenge getting your idea from your head to something tangible?

Making something tangible is extremely difficult and time- consuming. Without a doubt the most challenging thing has been sourcing and quality control. I found a local company that helps with sourcing and quality control overseas. Besides quality control provided already, I use a third-party quality control inspection service. This summer, I am going to have a dedicated quality control person from our company who will travel to the manufacturer’s site for every production run.

• How did or are you funding the development of your invention?

As previously mentioned, the Qlipter was initially funded by our Kickstarter launch. We currently sell the Qlipter on our website and through various retailers.

• How do you currently market your invention?

We market the Qlipter via our social media channels, through gear and press reviews and also at trade shows. We have several wholesale customers and are adding more retailers almost daily. We also use distributors and sales reps in specific markets.

• Tell us about your background?

I was born in Seoul, Korea, and grew up in Dubai, U.A.E., and Jakarta, Indonesia.  Moving to the United States, I earned my B.A. in Sociology from Brown University and my dual Ph.D. in Business and Sociology from the University of Michigan, earning nationally the Best Dissertation Award in my field with my work on social networks and entrepreneurship.  Prior to founding Lulabop, I worked as a professor at the University of Washington Foster School of Business and as Visiting Faculty Fellow at Stanford University. During my career as an academic, I taught Entrepreneurship, Organizational Behavior and Corporate Strategy to executives, doctoral students, MBA students and undergraduates while researching entrepreneurship, social networks and economic development.

• Who are your favorite inventors and why?

I have many favorite inventors, but right now, one that stands out is Ole Kirk Christiansen, the inventor of Lego. Not only did he come up with an innovative product that is still going strong after more than half a century, he persevered through some very challenging times both personally and with the product. I love the nature of the product itself. It promotes creativity in both kids and adults and is a great group activity as well (I loved Lego when I was little, and I still love it and am thrilled that my kids are old enough to play with it now as well). Lego as a business is also commendable; I admire how adaptive it has been over the years, always staying relevant to other things going on in the entertainment and gaming world.

• What’s been the most surprising part of your inventor’s journey so far?

I have been really struck by how many people have come to me to ask for tips and advice. Everyone has great ideas, but there really is a dearth of information on all the nitty gritty involved in making a product.

• What is a typical day like for you?

After I say goodbye to the kids, I wear about a dozen hats to run the business. Even though I have several team members helping me, I need to be involved in most of the operations and strategy. Currently, we have 3 additional products in the works so that entails working with the designers (industrial, package and graphic). I also try to identify several retailers a day to reach out to. I am also in the process of launching a new initiative that requires outreach to partners, website building and marketing plans.

• Who have been your role models, mentors, etc?

I am lucky to be surrounded by many entrepreneurs. Each entrepreneur has kernels of experience that are relevant to my business, no matter what industry s/he is in. I also belong to two business groups; we meet every month and discuss our various successes and challenges and have problem-solving sessions.

• Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?

At Lulabop, the company behind the Qlipter, we feel that women, especially moms, really have the best ideas for new products and inventions. They are problem solvers by nature and know what it takes to keep a household running smoothly. We want to encourage women to harness these ideas and make them reality. Anyone with an idea can truly be an inventor!

• What’s the best way for the readers/audience of Inventing Women to connect with you?

We have several ways that readers can connect with us:






What is the cost and how can we  learn more, purchase your invention?

The Qlipter sells for $19.95 on our website and includes free shipping to the U.S. and Canada. You can learn more here:

First Words

“You have to have your dreams, and the truth is, there were a lot of failures in her life. But it’s about the persistence and stamina to get up again and not accept defeat as the end of the line, but as a new challenge and a new opportunity.” James Donovan (referring to his mother Marion Donovan inventor of the Disposable Diaper

First words are often the most challenging to write. Whether it be in a book, in a letter, on a blog or in a memo. First words are important. After all they set the stage for what’s to come. So I thought I’d do just that by highlighting just a few inventing women who made history and changed our lives in a very profound and positive way. This is only a sample of the thousands of women I plan to highlight. Be sure and click on their names to read their personal stories of success.

Bette Nesmith Graham saved countless hours for typists everywhere when she invented Liquid Paper®,

Mary Anderson undoubtedly saved countless lives with her invention (the Windshield Wiper ) and what about the Inventor of the Barbie Doll, Ruth Handler? I still have my collection of 39 Barbies, Kens, Midges, Gidgets and not to mention the clothing, cars and Barbie houses!

And contrary to popular belief a man did not invent the modern brassier! Mary Phelps Jacob did! And thank goodness she did or we’d probably all still be wearing corsets not because corsets are considered a fashion statement because we had to!

One of my personal favorites is Ruth Wakefield, Inventor of the chocolate chip cookie! Okay, raise your hands if you thought it was Debbie Fields….

And my husband’s personal favorite (if he knew it existed) might be the Remote Control Locator invented by Twin Sisters, Kelli and Vanessa Dunn.

And while you’re in the mood to read about Inventing Women throughout history, here’s a great post called Exploring the History of Women Inventors by J. E. Bedi (Lemelson Center) I recommend you check out!

These and many more women will be written about on Inventing Women. My personal goals are to highlight women throughout history who have inspired us and changed our lives and to write about TODAY’s Inventing Women who are realizing their own dreams, visions and achieving their goals, Who knows, the next one could be YOU!

Thanks for stopping by and checking out Inventing Women. We have big plans for Inventing Women everywhere and invite you to be a part of it! Let’s make history together.

Warmest regards,

Heidi Richards Mooney

Note: this post first appeared on Feb 7, 2008. My team and I at Redhead Marketing, Inc. are recreating the website, giving it a facelift and basically updating everything.

And no that is not a picture of me!

Million Dollar Experts Speaking at the Grow a Million Dollar Business Virtual Summit

Million Dollar Experts Speaking at the Grow a Million Dollar Business Virtual Summit



The Grow a Million Dollar Business Summit and Celebration is THE eConference for Small Business Owners and Individuals who want to grow their business or idea into a financial empire. The even features 14 million-dollar achievers who have each built their own businesses from the ground up. Among Million-Dollar Experts, Kim Lavine, Inventor and Author of Mommy Millionaire, Tom Antion, President of Great Internet Marketing and Loral Langemeier, The Millionaire Maker

The Women’s eCommerce Association announces the lineup of guest experts celebrating our 5 year anniversary and International Women’s eCommerce Days September 18-20.

The Grow a Million Dollar Business Summit and Celebration is THE eConference for Inventors, Small Business Owners and Individuals who want to turn their business or idea into a financial empire. The event features 14 million-dollar achievers who have each built their own businesses from the ground up.

The grow a million dollar experts include:

  • Tom Antion, President of Great Internet Marketing
  • Loral Langemeier, The Millionaire Maker
  • Andrea Nierenberg, President The Nierenberg Group
  • Nicola Cairncross, President – The Money Gym
  • Kim Lavine, Inventor and Author of Mommy Millionaire
  • Annie Jennings of Annie Jennings PR
  • Heather Juma of Wealth, Success and Women
  • Elizabeth Gordon, Author of The Chic Entrepreneur
  • Joyce Bone, Founder of Millionaire Moms
  • Melanie Benson Strick, Entrepreneur Success Coach
  • Chris Ramey President, Affluent Insights
  • Diane Keohohou, CEO – Direct Selling Women’s Alliance
  • Marilyn Jenett of Feel Free to Prosper
  • Maria Marsala of Elevating Your Business
  • Sheri McConnell, CEO of Sheri McConnell Companies, Inc

Highlights from the virtual women’s media conference include the following:

  • From Small Town Kid to Internet Multi-Millionaire
  • Building Leading & Protecting Your Business
  • Million Dollar Networking: The Sure Way to Find, Grow and Keep Your Business
  • How to Build an Empire from Your Kitchen Table
  • The Mindset, Making & Marketing Of The Million Dollar Expert
  • How to Become a Millionaire Diva: Helping Women Create Riches in all Aspects of Their Lives
  • How to Grow a Million Dollar Business, The Chic Entrepreneur Way
  • How Millionaire Moms Achieved Financial Independence ~ and You Can Too!
  • How to Build a 6- and 7 Figure Business Using the Power of Virtual Teams
  • How to Market to the Affluent
  • How to Grow a Million Dollar Direct Sales Organization
  • How I Attract Million Dollar Clients Using Prosperity Principles – and You Can Too!
  • How to Grow a Million Dollar Business With a Mastermind Team
  • Why Creating a Membership Based-Business Is So Smart – The Millionaire’s Business Model

Each one-hour session will be rich in information and expertise attendees can take away to achieve financial freedom and grow a million dollar business. Registered guests will have their choice of attending via the online conference room or they can call into a teleconference bridge line to participate. Registrants who are unable to attend any or all of the event, will have access to the live recordings online after the event and can also purchase a complete set of audio CD’s.

About The Women’s eCommerce Association

Women in Ecommerce (, Founded by Heidi Richards Mooney, has more than 3400 members repressing 58 countries is the virtual organization that helps women to business on and off the web. The Women’s eCommerce Association has hosted and sponsored four past summits, The Woman’s Wealth Summit, Women’s Internet Marketing Summit, Women’s Media Summit and Women’s Writing & Publishing Summit. To learn more about Women in Ecommerce, go to For more information about the Grow a Million Dollar Business Summit; visit


Media Please Contact: Heidi Richards Mooney, 954-625-6606,


Interview with Laura McLaren Inventor of the Cleavage Caddy

On Wednesday, September 10th at 11 AM (EST)


Inventor of the Cleavage Caddy™ Tells how she got her idea onto the chests of women in America.

Laura McLaren, a single mother has taken her skills from the past 23 years and approximately 68+ jobs to create her own company. Her ingenuity to creatively conceal her cleavage led her to arrange scarves discreetly to accent her attire while maintaining the professionalism her work environment required. She then had an idea to create a multi-functional insert that would carry items such as credit cards, identification, money, lipstick, earpieces for technological devices etc. and the CLEAVAGE CADDY™ (patent pending) was born.The Cleavage Caddy is an insert for your bra with an added lace accent to to enhance your attire with a feminine influence. The lace covers your cleavage, adding an extra element of modesty, while still allowing you to carry all of your personal items discretely tucked in your bra. These are worn anchored to the bra by the elastic strap with a snap. Tuck away your keys, credit cards, lipstick and more!  


Laura then joined the American Business Womens Association who gave her the encouragement to start her own business. Her life has been a roller coaster ever since, but her perseverance and positive attitude, keeps her on track. Her dreams are what motivated her to take on this journey, and she wants to encourage others to follow their dreams as well. Her company, Mazantri Creations is dedicated to making a positive impact on the lives of others. One of the guiding principles of Mazantri Creations is to take opportunities to contribute to society in a productive manner.

If you are interested in attending this FREE teleconference, send a message to with “Cleavage Caddy RSVP” in the subject line and you will be sent instructions to participate.

Have an invention?  Need to get your invention off the ground? Join Heidi as she interviews Kim Lavine, Inventor and Author of Mommy Millionaire and 14 experts on building wealth September 18-20 for the Grow a Million Dollar Business Summit. Learn more and register WHERE WOMEN PROSPER.

You can learn more about the Cleavage Caddy™ at

Today is Chocolate Covered Anything Day

Since today is Chocolate Covered Anything Day, I thought I’d do some research on who invented chocolate and women and chocolate.

Here are four articles I found

Chocolate invented 3,100 years ago by the Aztecs – while trying to make beer.
Scientists have discovered that chocolate was invented at least 3,100 years ago in Central America and not as the sweet treat people now crave, but as a celebratory beer-like beverage and status symbol.

Researchers identified residue of a chemical compound that comes exclusively from the cacao plant – the source of chocolate – in pottery vessels dating from about 1100 BC in Puerto Escondido, Honduras.

Women and chocolate: Simply made for each other by Glenda Cooper

Women and chocolate are a dream team and advertisers have cleverly ensured they stay that way.

You can bet that when the first Aztec tentatively crushed a cacao bean, right behind him was an ad executive excitedly branding the muddy brown discovery “the food of the gods”. Or if there wasn’t, there certainly should have been — because chocolate hasn’t looked back since. Mars’s new “Mars Delight”, expected out this spring, is just the latest attempt to beguile us into seeing that a mixture of hydrogenated fat, sugar and theobromine (a type of caffeine) is an essential part of our life.  To read the rest of this article, visit

And then there’s the chocolate chip cookie, invented by a Woman!

Ruth Wakefield, Inventor of the Chocolate Chip Cookie:

Ruth Graves Wakefield (1905-1977) invented chocolate chips (and chocolate chip cookies) in 1930. Wakefield ran the Toll House Inn in Whitman, Massachusetts. Her new cookie invention was called the “Toll House Cookie.” Her original cookies used broken-up bars of semi-sweet chocolate. Her cookbook, “Toll House Tried and True Recipes,” was published in 1940. Chocolate chip cookies are a favorite treat for people of all ages, but without the famous woman inventor Ruth Wakefield, the world might never have tasted those sweet delights. Born in 1905, Wakefield grew up to be a dietician and food lecturer after graduating from the Framingham State Normal School Department of Household Arts in 1924. Along with her husband Kenneth, she bought a tourist lodge named the Toll House Inn, where she prepared the recipes for meals that were served to guests. Here’s the story of Ruth Wakefield:
So the Aztecs invented it and women perfected it!  Isn’t that divine?

Chocolate lover’s paradises around the world by By Joe Yogerst ~ From Belgium to Hershey, Pa., 10 Places to go cuckoo for cocoa
It’s just like any other addiction. You start slowly, gradually acquire a taste for the stuff and then ramp things up into a full-blown habit. But you can’t help yourself—you love the subtle buzz, the lingering aftertaste, the euphoric feeling that seems to follow every delicious encounter, to the point where you can no longer live without your daily dose. That’s when you know you’re a full-blown chocoholic. Read the rest of Chocolate lover’s paradise at MSNBC.

How to Package, Market and Sell Your Invention with Joan Lefkowitz

Joan Lefkowitz, an original marketer of TopsyTail tm, is president of ACCESSORY BRAINSTORMS, Inc, a licensing agency, sales representation and consultancy for Fashion/Beauty Accessory and Lifestyle Inventions. From its showroom in New York’s ‘accessories district,  it licenses inventors’ products to major corporations and markets to Mail Order Catalogues, TV Shopping programs and retail. 

Some very successful products we have launched have been TOPSY TAIL (which sold over $100m at retail), HAIRDINI, HOLLYWOOD FASHION TAPES, and MISS OOPS and, most recently, BOSOM BUTTON, LUMBARWEAR, WHIRL-A-STYLE, WINKEE, R.E.M. SPRING (hair removal tool) and TAG TAMERS…Specializing in representing unique products and inventions since 1984, she is always interested in seeing new products in these categories. ACCESSORIES Magazine awarded her for the “Most Inventive Products” and also cited her as one of the 100 most important accessories industry “Movers and Shakers”. You can visit: for more information.

In this session you will learn the hallmarks of a good invention, what should be included in your inventors marketing plan, the key elements that go into packaging a product for market,  how to develop a name for your product, marketing strategies to get your product into the hands of your ideal customer, how to approach retailers to carry your product, licensing options and other marketing tips for inventors who are ready to take their product to market.

To attend, send an email to info (at) with ”RSVP Market Inventions” in the subject line.

Two Inventing Women Blaze the Trail for Others

Over the past two weeks I have had the priviledge of interviewing two exceptional women inventors.

Tomima Edmark is the the inventor of the wildly successful TopsyTail, a hair accessory for women that she marketed by herself to revenues of $150 million. She is also the founder of and

During her interview Tomima shared her journey of taking her invention to market, how she promoted Topsy Tail, got them in major retail outlets, got funding and all the challenges and victories that went along with creating a mutli-million dollar empire.

You can listen to Tomima’s interview here: .


The next interview was with Denyse DuBrucq, inventor, educator and scientist. 

Denyse shared her story about all the things she has invented including the resistance to her ideas even though they could change the world, how she found the perfect patent attorney to work with, the resources she has found helpful in her journey and also the story of her newest invention and how she plans to save millions of lives with it.

You can listen to Denyse’s story here: .


Interveiw with Tomima Edmark, Topsy Tail Inventor

Unconventional Wisdom from a Woman with a Vision for an Invention that Sold Millions! An Inteview with Tomima Edmark, Inventor, Entrepreneur and Author


Friday May 2, 2008 – 9:30 AM Eastern Time (8:30 Central, 7:30 Mountain, 6:30 Pacific)

Tomima Edmark is the inventor of the wildly successful TopsyTail, a hair accessory for women that she marketed by herself to revenues of $150 million. This extraordinary product earned her instant fame among the nation’s small-business set and put Edmark on an entrepreneurial path that continues today. She has since developed a series of additional consumer products, written several successful books and created a variety of e-commerce Web sites. Along the way, she became known for her entrepreneurship and was featured on television shows and in business publications like Good Morning America, Oprah, Forbes Magazine, and The Wall Street Journal.

In 1999, Tomima realized there was a gap in the options women had to buy lingerie; our choices were department store, lingerie boutique or mail order. Why shouldn’t we have the same ease buying bras that we had for, say, tee shirts or music? An entrepreneur with a series of unconventional successes, Tomima turned to the internet and HerRoom was born. For Tomima, HerRoom isn’t just about shopping for sexy lingerie. She wants women to find the styles and sizes that fit them best—for all body types and tastes.

With a BFA in Fashion Design and an MBA, she uses her left brain and right brain to understand both the design and business of the women’s lingerie market. Tomina is going to share how she got the idea for TopsyTail, her journey to taking her invention to market and the steps she took to that led to its ultimate success.

To RSVP for this event, send a message to Heidi (at) inventing with “RSVP Tomima Edmark” in the subject line.  Instructions will be sent to you in return email.

Interview with Denyse DuBrucq, EdD. – Inventor, Educator

firefighter.jpg   Never Let ‘em Get You Down! The Challenges and Bureaucratic B.S. of Taking An Invention to Market with Denyse DuBrucq, EdD.

Join us on Wednesday, April 30, 2008 (10:00 AM Eastern Time) (9:00 AM Central, 8:00 AM Mountain, 7:00 AM Pacific)

Denyse DuBrucq, EdD. is an educator and inventor.  She serves as Managing General Partner of two partnerships holding her inventions, one dealing with the electronics inventions and the other those dealing with fires and crises.  She discovered how to use Liguid Nitrogen to stop fires.  Prospects for her invention are world wide to reduce the carbon released to the atmosphere during fires and to preserve water resources.  She anticipates demonstrations in China to control their severe coal mine fires and in California for the Department of Forestry and Fire Prevention to end wildland fires quickly and efficiently. 

In 2003 with the Iraq War underway, the Iraqis threatened to explode their oil wells 20 feet below the surface.  To control these events without losing rights to the technology as happened in her work to control the Kuwait well fires in 1991, DuBrucq started writing the first Liquid Nitrogen patent focusing first on the Iraqi task, and, as the ideas kept streaming, the a wide group of fire and crises control capabilities. 

August, 2003, she offered the US Army Corps of Engineers means to quickly end the oil pipeline fires in Iraq, where these fires took 10 days to end, enabling them to be controlled in one day.  The compensation she requested never happened because it had to be paid by the company that lost profits because of the new required speed of fire control.  In this session you will learn about Denyse’s journey of disappointment, promises not kept, political two-stepping and other challenges she has faced to get her products to market. 

Unwavering in her quest to succeed, Denyse has put together a team that she feels will help her get the much needed funding, attention and outcome she knows can and will change the world.

Interested in attending?  Send an email to heidi (at) inventing women with RSVP Denyse DuBrucq in the subject line and you will receive call-in and webinar instructions.

Podcast Interview with Julie Rhodes of Kleen Slate

juliarhodes.jpg Julia Rhodes, Inventor of Kleen Slate Dry Erase Markers and Whiteboards.

Julia M. Rhodes is President of KleenSlate Concepts, a successful international product development company she founded in 2001. Julia invented, patented, manufactured, marketed and distributed her first product: The KleenSlate Attachable Eraser for Dry-erase Markers. She single handedly landed contracts with both Office Depot and Staples and understands what it takes to “do business with the Big Boys.” In the past seven years she has built a thriving company with a growing line of award-winning dry-erase products.

Building a business from an idea for a product requires a can-do attitude, which is reinforced by Julia’s growing success, and she is generous in her desire to share this information with others just starting out in business. Invention is just the first step in product development and her passion is supporting other inventors in understanding the steps required for taking an idea and making it a reality.

A former school teacher, Julia’s dedicated to improving education, and all her products are designed to be of the highest quality and employ creative approaches to communication both in and out of the classroom. Her newest product, KwikChek II just won the prestigious award, “Teachers’ Choice 2008” from Learning Magazine. She is constantly engaged in crafting new educational products to expand her current offerings and is also working on her first book – “The Right Sisters: Modern Day Women Inventors,” which she hopes will inspire young adults to pursue their passions and believe in their ideas. Julia has been featured on radio and television, most notably The Entrepreneur Hour Radio Show and the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. She is also a Founding Board Member of Inventing Women™

In this session Julia will be giving an overview of taking an idea from your head, to market. We discuss how she got the idea, how she researched it for marketability, how she patented it, who she used to help her get her idea off the ground, how she spread the word about her idea using whiteboard clothing (which she also invented) and more! Listen to Julia now!