Tell us a bit about cloud textiles and what we can expect to discover?
Cloud Textiles is a venture born out of a love of craft and textiles. I create fun, sustainable, everyday wear for your little people. Inspired by sunshine, veggie patches, bees and flowers, the clothes are designed to be played in without compromising on style and quality. All the clothes and homewares I make are handprinted and handmade in Australia, using natural fabrics including organic cotton, hemp and bamboo. The styles are chosen to fit across sizes, meaning your little people will get more wear out of them. These clothes are built to last. Oh and we also have a limited range of goodies for mamas.
What inspired you to start your own label?
I love printing and sewing. I have dreamt about starting my own little label making unique handmade textiles for quite a few years. The stars aligned last year. After having kids, taking a break from professional work and practicing my creative skills regularly, I decided to push myself and extend my hobby into a business. Also, I wanted to see if I could develop a low impact, sustainable business that could produce lovely, practical and unique clothes without the impacts on the environment and workers that conventional clothing production has.
What do you love about working with kids clothes? What keeps you creatively motivated?
I love working with kids clothes because you can have a lot of fun with the prints and colours. It presents a unique challenge of designing equally for practicality, aesthetics and longevity. Also, I have the perfect testers in my two daughters and two nephews!
Crafty friends and their amazing skills and talents inspire me constantly. I am in awe of some of the amazing Australian screenprinters out there. I am also lucky enough to have a lovely big, productive garden which I spend hours each day in and get to see nature buzzing around me. I am really inspired by the change in seasons, seeds growing into plants, trees budding then blossoming. Bees buzzing from flower to flower. Tiny details in every day life.
What do you love about living in Moss Vale?
The pace of life, the extra physical space I have here (a tiny studio in the back garden) and the head space (the ‘quiet’ of the country) have allowed me to actually move my hobby into a business. It is early days but here I can focus rather than getting distracted with all the great things that are happening in the city. I also feel like I have the best of all worlds – close to the city, beach and bush. I also have some very special friends here who are dreamers like me and are super fun to hang with.
What challenges have you faced starting your own label and what are some of the things you love about it?
Limitations in my technical and business knowledge. Some of that has been a steep learning curve. In fact, I am still riding that curve but I am learning so much it has also been some of the bits I love about doing Cloud Textiles seriously. Sourcing materials has also been tricky, especially when you have a clear idea of what you are after and just can’t find it. I love the creative outlet that Cloud Textiles provides. I can come up with an idea and it is completely up to me to run with it and make it happen. And I have an excuse for designing new prints and playing around with new fabric and print colours. I love all that stuff!
What aspirations do you have for your label in the future?
I am really happy just to have the excuse to keep making at the moment. Keep designing prints. Keep making printed fabric into lovely clothes. Keep it at a scale that is both sustainable and manageable. I love the idea of slow fashion for kids. They grow out of everything so fast, what can I design that lasts longer in terms of quality and over sizes. My spring/summer dress is a great example of that, it starts as a dress and literally 2 years later can still be worn as a top. I am also slightly obsessed with natural fabric dying at the moment so who knows!