Hi, I am Nicci, the mom behind Eco Mini - a little company with a big heart!
I would love to share a bit of my journey towards sustainability, and the birth of my business with you.
MY PERSONAL CLOTH JOURNEY
I have been passionate about finding ways to live more sustainably for some time, so when I found out I was pregnant shortly after moving from South Africa to Sweden in 2017, it was time to figure out what that looked like from a parenting perspective.
The first step was our decision to use cloth diapers, even though at that time neither me nor my husband had never met anyone who had used modern cloth diapers. I had no human that I could call and ask my million questions to. (Most importantly, “what on earth do you do with the poop?!”) I could not find a local store where I could walk in to touch and feel cloth diapers, or get a better idea of what I was signing up for, so started researching online.
I discovered a wonderful community of likeminded people, but also a mountain of information that felt rather confusing and overwhelming to a beginner like I was at the time.
Fortunately I pushed through, figured it out and found my feet. What a ride it has been!
After choosing cloth diapers, we made the decision to use cloth wipes for diaper changes (instead of regular, disposable “wet wipes”), as well as reusable wet bags (instead of single use plastic bags) for storing dirty diapers.
I discovered reusable cloth breast pads for the first breastfeeding months, and just threw them in the machine whenever I did a load of laundry.
Next, I realised that I was washing my son’s cloth wipes with his diapers every 5 days anyway, so started using “family cloth” (cloth wipes instead of toilet paper) for myself whenever I peed at home. With this our toilet paper consumption dropped by around 70%. BOOM!
Before my pregnancy I used a menstrual cup, but after my son was born, the cup was just not working for me anymore. By this point I was so passionate about reusable cloth, that the idea of using disposable sanitary pads or tampons was not an attractive option at all.
So, I tried cloth sanitary pads instead. That started a whole new love affair with cloth!
I struggled to find pads that I was happy with locally, so started sewing my own. Soon, this became a small handmade range under the name Eco Eva.
After our son started preschool, I was sad to find that he was the only child in his school in cloth, but so blown away by his school’s enthusiasm to come on board with our cloth journey!
Every day our son goes to preschool with a Wet Bag full of diapers for the day, and in the afternoon we bring the dirty diapers back in the same bag to take care of at home. Any dirty or wet clothes come home in the same Wet Bag, instead of the single use plastic bags that are used for everyone else.
THE BUSINESS IDEA
I started thinking that if only every child in Sweden owned ONE Wet Bag, literally millions of single use plastics could be avoided. I realised that many people do not make these sustainable swaps, simply because they have not been exposed to the option of them being available or even existing.
We do not find reusable breast- or sanitary pads next to the disposable pads in supermarkets, nor do we find cloth diapers in the diaper isle. There are no packs of reusable cloth wipes on the wet wipe shelves. I suppose these items do not make business sense from a commercial standpoint because once you have bought one set, you can literally cross that category of items off your future shopping lists.
The Cloth Diaper- and Zero Waste communities are growing, but still relatively small, and I felt driven to “join the movement” so to speak. To become an advocate for reusable over single use items, and continue taking one step at a time toward living more sustainably, and consuming less resources as a family.
My mission is to empower other parents or soon-to-be parents to be able to start their cloth journey confidently. To provide support, as well as good quality, affordably priced cloth options, available locally, and gain more exposure for the Zero Waste and Cloth Love movements. This is why Eco Mini was born.
My husband and I are both passionate cloth-diapering parents, and are firm advocates for choosing reusable over disposable wherever possible.
The aim is to empower you with the information and products you need to make more sustainable choices for yourself, your family and your home.
We are far from perfect, but try with every opportunity to make the best decisions possible, and run Eco Mini with integrity and transparency.
MANUFACTURING AND TRANSPARENCY
When deciding on the form the business would take, we had to make some decisions regarding the manufacturing of our products, and what the main priorities for the business were.
My ideal would have been to handmake everything we sell locally in Sweden, but realised that would put the startup cost for anyone wanting to start their cloth journey so high that it would be inaccessible to most.
The goal of the business is to empower as many parents as possible to NOT consume and throw away (on average) 6300 disposable diapers per child, but rather one set of 24-30 cloth diapers that could be reused for multiple children. To make this an affordable and attainable option for all, we decided to manufacture the bulk of our range abroad. We are currently working with three trusted and reputable manufacturers on our Eco Mini range.
All Eco Eva products are hand made with love in Sweden from locally sourced materials. We choose certified organic materials wherever possible.
Eco Mini products are responsibly produced in China, where we only work with manufacturers who operate in accordance with the Fair Labor Association Workplace Code of Conduct, and according to the Chinese Labor Law. The employees of our suppliers work standard restricted hours in a safe environment, and are paid a fair wage.
Products that are shipped to us are shipped in cardboard boxes with a single plastic layer inside each box to prevent water damage in transit. Products are received, and also shipped to you without individual plastic packaging.
PLEASE GET IN TOUCH
We would love your feedback, suggestions, or ideas for collaborations.
Feel free to contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org at any time to ask questions, connect, or make an appointment to see our products in person. We would love to meet you!
Even though you cannot do all the good that the world needs, the world needs all the good that you can do. So please, come alongside us, get on board with us, and let’s take a few steps toward a more sustainable and greener future together!
In Cloth Love,