From beautiful baby bodysuits, bloomers and rompers to unique designs and wall art, it’s not hard for Moobles and Toobles to catch your attention. And once we discovered that they use organic, ethically made and fair trade materials – we had to find out more!
PurposeHub caught up with founder Nadia to find out more about why she started her business, her design background and creating clothes that are made to last.
PH: Firstly, tell us a little bit about yourself.
Nadia: I’m a wife and mum to a five-year-old girl. We’ve lived in Dublin all our lives. I’m artistic & my husband is musical (he teaches guitar & drums) so we’re always knee deep in some sort of artistic project. I’m also an NCAD graduate with a Bachelor of Design in Printed Textiles.
After college, I worked in visual merchandising/display for over a decade & project managed store openings for global brands but always wanted to get back into designing & printing myself. I got tired of the rat race and merchandising other people’s designs so during my maternity leave I decided to dust off the sketch books and start drawing again. Being a new mum, baby wear was what I was most inspired to print. My husband’s father was always at me to get printing again as he had all the equipment and had previously been a printer by trade.
After trial & error, hundreds of hours researching manufacturers and organic cotton I finally printed a few pieces & set up a little Etsy store. I quickly got my things into some great little craft stores around Ireland and opened up an Instagram account where the brand gained international exposure and then stockists. While I’ve been printing on baby clothing for around four years (it started as a hobby on blanks), I’m almost two years at it full-time with the brand.
PH: What inspired you to start Moobles and Toobles?
Nadia: Moobles and Toobles started as a creative outlet for me to draw and design really. When I had my daughter who’s five now, I didn’t know much about independent brands. Social media has since taught me a lot. It was all high street and the odd retro band onesie (cliché Stone Roses baby tee). I wanted something different and fresh for her.
I suppose Moobles and Toobles stands for something else now. It’s a brand and it’s my living. It’s important for the brand to develop and constantly improve. When I look back at my first prints I get a little embarrassed but it’s good to see how far we’ve come since them. I also plan to revisit and develop my original illustrations in the future.
PH: Environmental and sustainability credentials have been integrated throughout your business – Can you tell us a little bit about them?
Nadia: As I’ve become a parent and gotten older I’ve increasingly become worried about the use of chemicals and pesticides in farming. I try feed my daughter as much organic food as possible and the things I can’t get organic are literally soaked in vinegar to get the chemicals off them. I’ve read that cotton farmers have a higher risk of lymphoma because of the chemicals and pesticides used and I absolutely hate to think of tonnes and tonnes of cheap clothing thrown into landfill.
I absolutely love hearing about Moobles and Toobles garments being passed down to siblings and I really believe clothing should be made to last and have as little impact on the environment as possible. Moobles and Toobles garments are GOTS certified and our manufacturer is regularly audited under SEDEX to guarantee Fair Trade Practices and working conditions within their factory. You can find out more about our manufacturing & ethos on the website.
PH: How do you come up with your unique designs?
Nadia: It starts with one image in my head and then that turns into a theme. I then go to my Pinterest boards for colour & image ideas. I’ve my own style of drawing & know the limitations of screen printing so I take that all into account when designing. I have a whole collection in my head right now. I just need to get it on paper.
My strength (I think) is colour so I usually have my palette worked out in my head first of all. I can usually envisage exactly how things will look from start to finish. My best friend is my Pantone colour swatch book as I mix my colours using it when I experiment on fabric. Then some designs organically evolve as I print them. I’ve ten silkscreens here with my images on them, and with the current collection I was able to create new images using different screens together and mixing shapes.
PH: What has been the reaction to Moobles and Toobles so far?
Nadia: It’s been really positive. The majority of my customers are Irish now, they were Australian at the start. I’ve never received one complaint about the quality of the pieces and it’s a great feeling to walk into one of my stockists like Avoca and see my designs displayed.
PH: What excites you most about where your business is going?
Nadia: I’m not really sure where we are going, it’s all organic really, so I suppose that’s exciting. A busy pinging phone full of order notifications is always exciting!! Although I enjoy wholesale, I’ll always enjoy direct selling from my own website more. Seeing customers requests for custom prints, colours and gifts is quite exciting and it’s very rewarding sending each bundle off to its new owner.
PH: Where can we find Moobles and Toobles products?
Nadia: You can find us at www.mooblesandtoobles.com
We are also stocked in four Avoca stores, KID store Dublin and several independent stores around the world.
PH: Finally, how can we keep up to date with Moobles and Toobles?