Babies grow out of everything at incredible speeds, and it’s too easy to end up entangled in a mess of virtually unrecyclable items – particularly when it feels like everything made for babies made of plastic – toys, decorations, sometimes even garments. Look, plastic is a material that has permeated all of our lives, appearing frequently on children’s things to the point where unless we are reminded, its almost easy to forget that many of its components are highly toxic. We have plastic toys at home – gifted and bought – so there is absolutely no judgement here, but I am really trying to find alternatives to break this vicious cycle, and I don’t think that I am alone…
New mums Katherine and Cecily didn’t notice how much plastic they were using until they’d been parenting for six months. Once their sleeping schedules began to make sense again, they were surprised to find themselves surrounded by the waste created by the material. The two realised they weren’t doing the planet or their sense of aesthetics any favours – and they decided to act on it. The worlds of fashion and design are evolving towards something friendlier to our present and future, and it’s great to see that mindset extending to children’s products. I always say with Red Carpet Green Dress that supporting sustainability is not only a ‘way to do good’, it is also (and right now this is of more timely importance) a way to empower and support businesses creating good products and delivering good services. In this case independent businesses like PomPom promoting good products.
After facing a lack of readily available alternatives to plastic-based products, Katherine and Cecily decided to begin a quest to find eco-friendly products for babies and small children, searching everything from shampoo to clothes. After a while, they discovered that they’d become experts on the subject… and the rest is history. PomPom is an online shop offering a full array of plastic-free products for babies and small children. While being plastic-free is their starting point, there’s a second essential base for the items curated on the site: they’re all cute! Katherine and Cecily have dedicated themselves to curating a list of baby products that are friendly to little ones and the environment without sacrificing design on the slightest. They’ve thoroughly done their research on the most responsible and top-quality brands and have allied themselves. As part of PomPom’s effort to make things easier for parents looking to lower their plastic consumption, they’ve become a bridge between great products and conscious parents on the hunt.
Besides curating solely plastic-free products, Katherine and Cecily also ensure that the brands they partner with have plastic-free packaging. On their website you are able to search and shop by your interests for specific types of sustainable products – whether opting to shop solely for items made in the UK or to support companies led and owned by women – down to the materials being used (FYI some of the most popular sustainable materials available on the site include wood, wool, felt, sugar cane, and bamboo). The site’s section on felt items was a real joy to browse around, which a varied selection selection including gorgeous slippers, garlands, and rugs. I would describe their selection as colourful items full of life, the kind of pieces that make a little ones room more soft and playful (and of course, cleaner).
When it comes to wool-based materials, felt is one of the most sustainable fabrics out there. It is made through matting, condensing and pressing wool together, quite a different process from the one used to create wool sweaters or throws. It is a low-impact fabric for a variety of reasons, from being renewable (sheep can be sheared once a year) to its fully biodegradable quality. The fair-trade animal slippers kids’ slippers we got were adorable – handmade, sustainable fashion at its best! They are designed in Oxfordshire and created in Kathmandu by an all female community, incredible women who shape organic wool by hand with soap, water and an evident sprinkle of genius! Delicately sewn features bring the characterful animal slippers to life while cross stitched, soft suede anti-slip soles are added to finish them off. Beautifully presented in an organic, cotton, draw-string pouch they are even coloured with eco-friendly dyes.
Finding baby products with a conscious approach can be the starting point to meaningful conversations later on, showing our children that every made thing counts in the journey to make our world a friendlier, and more comfortable, place to inhabit. Raising humans to be conscious can start during their early days, but we need to have the products available to surround them with, which demonstrate have a low impact on our planet. We needs the Pom Pom’s of the world, because when we search, these beautiful natural products need to be available.
PomPom is a curated shop of imaginative and well-designed plastic free products that children will love, play with or use, again and again. Plastic has a devastating effect on the environment, yet it has permeated every part of our lives. To find good looking and long-lasting plastic free options takes effort, energy and time. It requires planning, preparation and thought. The world is too busy and yet we want to do the Right Thing.