This week we’re celebrating Australia’s multibrand cloth nappy retail businesses. We’ll introduce you to some business owners passionate about reusable nappies, sharing their wide knowledge and experience. A multibrand retailer is a great place to start if you’re new to cloth nappies, as they have a wide experience of different brands and knowledge across all areas and can help narrow down the options to suit your family.
My name is Alyce Mostert – I’m a baby addict, mother of 4, sonographer, babywearing consultant and cloth nappy educator. After consulting for Baby Mumma for 3.5 years, I started my own e-retail business, Cloth and Carry, at the end of 2019.
Cloth and Carry is a little different to most other MCN retailers in Australia. I share the love in my business between cloth nappies AND baby carriers. My south of Perth home showroom is open by appointment and welcomes multiple families a week. It is stocked from floor to ceiling with a huge range of products to help ease people into their cloth nappy and babywearing journeys, and I provide full educational consults for both product ranges.
I’m currently on maternity leave, and the bulk of my business is maintained by my beautiful friend, fellow mother of many, and Cloth and Carry customer experience assistant Charmaine Dennis. I do the ordering and pay the bills, and Charmaine does virtually everything else, including new releases, website maintenance, social media, email support, packing orders, unpacking/displaying stock and consultations.
The vast majority of my cloth nappy range is dedicated to supporting other Australian small businesses including Baby Bare, Baby Beehinds, Bubblebubs, Crackadaks, Designer Bums, Evia Nappies, RAWr Nappies, Rugcrafts by JesA, and Seedling Baby. I also stock British brand ‘Close Parent’ and America’s ‘Grovia’, both of which are wholesaled through Australian small businesses. The only nappy brand that I personally import from overseas is New Zealand’s up and coming small business ‘Fudgey Pants’.
I love the relationships built, the inspirational women and men running these businesses, and the support and comradery within the industry. This extends to other multi-brand retailers as well – everyone is supportive and encouraging, and always willing to help out if someone is having a little business meltdown, needs advice, or a website has over-sold products.
My journey to small business owner began with the birth of my second baby, Maggie, in April 2015. Maggie was/is affectionately known as my “glue baby”. I soon found my local babywearing volunteer group and started to build my baby carrier stash. My passion for babywearing quickly grew, and I soon discovered that local Australian business Baby Mumma [then] offered consultant positions. I jumped in and applied to become WA’s first and only Baby Mumma consultant, and within weeks I had purchased my first demo collection, as well as a small personal stash of cloth nappies. I realised that my early fear of cloth nappies was completely unfounded, and very soon had transitioned Maggie to MCNs almost full-time, and our toilet-trained toddler Pippa moved to reusable night nappies.
Baby Mumma Perth gave me an incredible start in this industry. I learnt a huge amount from the two Baby Mumma owners I worked with – Sarah and Larissa provided me with invaluable friendship, support and knowledge. I became more involved in local events and peer education, and hosted lots of individual and “mothers group” education sessions on both babywearing and cloth nappies.
In October 2019, a change in insurance conditions meant that consultancy became a non-viable portion of Baby Mumma, and our business arrangement amicably ended. I was already so invested. I had built an amazing community, held way too much stock, and my passion for sharing this parenting journey with other families was at an all-time high. I couldn’t quit, and Larissa was incredibly supportive of me staying in the industry.
It took me about 10 weeks to transition to Cloth and Carry, including building my very own website, and I formally launched my small business on January 5th 2020. I am forever grateful for the experiences and people that have helped me build this business over the past 20 months, and I cannot wait to see where it goes next!