Meet Daphne and Tinomia of BabaToeks!
Daphne Coveney-Winter and Tinomia Gradidge are the mother and daughter team behind the gorgeous BabaToeks range of bespoke baby apparel.
The range includes their Classic Collection of bibs, burp cloths, linen and beechwood bunny teethers and bunny lovey’s in 4 beautiful colours. Each of their handmade items is embroidered with the BabaToeks logo and sets can also be customised with Baby’s name for an extra-special gift.
Based in Cape Town, Daphne and Tinomia are dedicated to the return of slow design practices, to sustainability and to making well-made, local baby apparel. Their embroidered collections are available via their social media pages or contact them directly.
Putting their passion to work for them
As an evening wear dressmaker, Daphne’s income was directly affected by the lockdown and Tinomia was out of work as a result of the pandemic so they needed a new plan. Daphne’s small, home-based studio was equipped and available so the Mother/Daughter team decided to start up their own new embroidery business.
They decided on baby apparel and knew immediately that to differentiate themselves from everyone else, their product needed to include embroidery at the heart of each item. They use their Brother Innov-is 90E to embroider their custom-designed logo; to personalise products for customers; and to embroider new designs onto their apparel.
"As a recently graduated Fashion Designer, I found myself out of a job during the pandemic. My mother and I both needed a new way to earn an income as well as find a way to release our creative energy."
BabaToeks Bespoke Baby Apparel
We started working together on BabaToeks in September 2020 and put all our efforts into it to launch in December 2020. We launched on Facebook and Instagram on 12 December 2020 with our Classic Collection and a Christmas Collection. Needless to say we felt a huge sense of accomplishment in being able to start our small business from scratch in a little over 3 months.
We faced many hurdles and challenges in those 3 months. We had to make up all of our design concepts, drafting patterns, cutting fabric, embroidering and sewing it all. It was a lot of work for two people, in a small space with differing ideas at times. We had to learn to work on our communication, and we still work on it, and figure out how we could work together as mother and daughter while maintaining our relationship.
The lessons that we have come away with are that perseverance and dedication will pay off. Do not give up, keep trying, and keep your head up. It is not easy starting your own business and everyone hopes that their business will be that overnight success story. So it takes a lot of self-will and determination to keep pushing forward with your idea, staying true to yourself, your product, your business.
Staying true to our values and philosophy of sustainability and well-made apparel has also brought its own challenges. We strive to reduce waste, re-use waste and use sustainable practices where possible. Being a small sustainable brand in a world of ‘Fast Fashion’ and competing with established retailers is difficult as we are trying to encourage consumers to support small local business.
"We take things one day at a time and face our challenges in the same manner, which makes it easier to deal with and come up with solutions. We are proud of what we have done so far and know we will go from strength to strength as our business grows."