Piccalilly Blog

Lovely little clothes for lovely little people

  • Small Business Inspirator

    Piccalilly Founder Hannah Evans - Small Business Inspirator chosen by Holly Tucker

    We've some exciting news to share with you. Piccalilly's female founder Hannah Evans has been chosen by Holly Tucker to be a SMALL BUSINESS INSPIRATOR along with a collective of other amazing creative small businesses owners. If you don’t know who Holly is she’s the founder of NOTHS (Not On The High Street) and she now runs Holly & Co cheerleading the small business community. She’s a legend and she’s created this pilot scheme to champion small business and encourage consumers to shop independent. How amazing are they to choose to put their hard earned marketing budget back into the small business community rather than handing it over to the social media giants?

    Collectively our aim is to spread the word that female founders can create businesses doing what we love, we can support the next generation of founders #kidpreneurs and in the run up to Christmas we want to share the message that we should vote with our hard earned cash.

    It didn’t take any persuading to join this crusade as supporting the independent sector is a priority. In the months following lockdown Holly’s Instagram feed and podcasts “Conversations of Inspiration’ were our go to place providing daily business advice on how to navigate the pandemic.

    Post lockdown also gave us time to reflect on the business of Piccalilly and gave us the strength to rethink running an independently owned ethical clothing brand at a time when our bricks and mortar stockists were being asked to close and our supply chains were going into lockdown. For a long time we’ve felt uncomfortable following the seasonal pattern of the high street and now felt the right time to find another way. Protecting the health and safety of our factory workers is hugely important and it doesn’t feel appropriate to push workers to complete orders for a ‘seasonal’ launch when our ranges are non-seasonal and can be worn all year round. Listening to Conversations of Inspirations reaffirmed that every business has had to transform through these tough times and that we can change for the good of our supply chain to enable us to stay true to our core values of fair trade and sustainability.

    If you’re a small business owner and you’re inspired by our mission then head over to the podcast and catch up https://podfollow.com/conversations-of-inspiration We’d love you too to be a change maker.

  • Sustainable Baby & Kids Clothing

    Small Swap, Big Difference Small Swap, Big Difference

    It's Organic September and we want to talk sustainability. With the mounting concern that we’re destroying our planet for future generations now more than ever is the time for us to make sustainable choices.

    Of course, sustainability covers many things; from reducing the environmental impact of manufacturing processes, cutting out toxic chemicals, and ensuring ethical work practices and fair pay.

    Here are some helpful hints and tips when buying baby and children’s clothing:

    • Choose organic cotton clothing. Our Chetna Organic farmers use natural farming techniques without the use of toxic chemicals. Organic cotton has a 46% reduced global warming potential compared with conventionally grown cotton.
    • Transparency is key when it comes to sustainability. Be sure to buy from brands who share who makes their clothes and find out where they source their materials. Get more informed about the brands you’re buying from to ensure that their values are aligned with yours.
    • Every item of new clothing has a carbon footprint. Only buy clothes you know your baby or child will wear.
    • Opt for trans-seasonal baby and kids clothing ahead of seasonal fashion. It’s far more sustainable to buy clothes that will be worn all-year round than shell out on an entire seasonal wardrobe.
    • Dressing your kids in quality clothing, over quantity of clothing is vital to a more sustainable wardrobe. Buy less and use for longer. Choose well made clothing with longer lasting fits to get the most out of your children’s clothes.
    • Donate the clothing your kids have grown out of. If you don’t have a family member or friend to hand outgrown kidswear onto then donate to a local charity who are crying out for baby and children’s clothes.

    Head on over to the Piccalilly to find out more about The Piccalilly Way of doing things and who makes our sustainable baby and kids clothes.

  • Our lockdown story - an update on the impact of Covid-19

    Chetna Organic Farmer - Creating beautifully soft chemical free organic cotton. Chetna Organic Farmer - Creating beautifully soft chemical free organic cotton.

    It’s nearly the start of September and we know many of you are patiently waiting for our next drop. We felt it’s now the right time to update you on new launches. The impact of Covid-19 on us and our supply chains has been a roller coaster and it’s certainly time to take a closer look at how we do business to ensure we come out the other side even stronger and better as an ethical baby & kidswear brand.

    After lockdown was announced

    Like most businesses in the UK, and globally, the 24 hours after lockdown was announced were worrying times and we saw trade drop significantly before traffic surged significantly on-line. This was countered with our independent bricks and mortar stockists being asked to close just as our summer ranges were delivered into our warehouse. We needn’t have worried they’ve all done an amazing job of reopening and we’re delighted to see they’re bouncing back with tremendous resilience.

    We’re now faced with new challenges. Our organic and ethical supply chains are severely impacted as the pandemic works its way across the globe and there are delays in new baby & kids clothes arriving. We’ve worked with the same Indian supply chain since 2006. With limited public transport, strict social distancing and hygiene protocols having been set up things are rightly much slower operationally for our fairtrade factory now, this is something we wanted to share with you. We feel it’s important to be transparent about how they’re currently impacted in order to manage expectation with regards new season launches this season and moving into 2021.

    What does the future look like?

    It's not business as usual but the beginnings of a new norm are starting to form. As with our own team here at Piccalilly HQ, the safety of the people who make our baby & kids clothes must always come first. It’s not clear when life will return close to where it was before, or indeed whether it will or should. We therefore are rethinking how we do business to adapt to this current situation. Turning a blind eye would be wrong and we believe now is a good time for us to reflect how we operate in order to support our supply chains whilst also being able to bring you the best organic and ethical clothing for your little ones.

    The obvious move is towards less seasonal ranges and to move away from the high street calendar of launching strictly within a season. This means if orders cannot be completed on time, it doesn’t matter, because our clothing doesn’t and shouldn’t have a sell by date attached to it. Our aim is to create more timeless collections that are purchased because they’re needed and loved and have a longer-term worth. Having the flexibility to move launches makes us more adaptable and allows us to be fully supportive of the challenges our supply chains are now experiencing.

    We thank you for taking the time to read our honest account and we can’t wait to share with you our new ranges when they do arrive.

  • The best clothes to fit over cloth nappies

    Cloth_Nappy_Clothing Soft jersey dungarees are the perfect cloth nappy fit.

    You’ve made the decision to choose cloth nappies? Spent hours checking out the different brands and types of reusable nappies available on the market. One thing that shouldn’t be overlooked is finding the perfect clothes to fit over a bigger cloth bum.

    Here at Piccalilly we started life as an organic baby brand before expanding into toddler, kids and womenswear. Very soon after launching our first organic baby clothing range we realised that many of our customers were using reusable nappies and that the fit for our Piccalilly babywear needed to be adapted to comfortably cover a cloth bummed baby. Our sizing and fit have evolved over the last 15 years to reflect wearability. Much of our baby and toddler clothing has been adapted based on fit sessions and feedback from parents to ensure a comfy fit over reusable nappy.

    When looking for clothing to fit over cloth nappies it’s best to choose soft and stretchy jersey fabrics rather than woven fabrics. Stretch and movement within fabric is important. Choose styles that have enough room, without being too baggy. Tight clothing and woven fabrics are not ideal for fitting over reusable nappies as they can lead to compression leaks, which of course no one wants. When it comes to trousers or leggings it’s important to look at high rise or harem styles over slim fits.

    Feedback from our Piccalilly Chatterbox group on which styles were best for fitting over reusable nappies suggest that our jersey dungarees for baby and toddler are the perfect fit over a cloth nappy.

    So. here’s a summary to help you choose the best clothing to fit over washable nappies;

    • Choose your fabrics carefully.
    • Go for soft jersey over restrictive woven’s.
    • Avoid tight fitting clothing which can lead to compression leaks
    • Piccalilly jersey dungarees are the perfect fit

    “I've found your brand (honestly) makes clothing ideal for cloth nappies. In over 2 years we've never had an issue. Your sizing is generous and lasts longer than the tag size.”

    • @otterdreaming, Instagram

    Soft jersey dungarees Soft jersey dungarees
  • Piccalilly Grow Your Own Recipe's to try out at home

     

    Piccalilly Grow Your Own Chalenge Courgette & Sweetcorn Fritters made freshly picked produce from the garden

    We’re delighted with the success that our grow your own challenge is having this summer. It’s been great to see your photos and produce. We hope you're having fun and enjoying the process of growing your own fruit and veg.

    By now you should be starting to enjoy the rewards and it’s time to start thinking about some delicious recipes to make with your home-grown goodies. Here are a few fun, delicious and colorful recipes. Get the kids involved and transform your home-grown fruit and veg into something super tasty.

    We promise you they’ll enjoy eating these scrumptious home-made recipes!

    Sweetcorn and Courgette Fritters

     200g of freshly cooked sweetcorn kernels

    2 spring onions, finely chopped

    50g of courgette, grated

    50g of self-raising flour

    1 egg

    40ml of milk

    4 tbsp of sweet chilli sauce (optional)

    Juice 1 lime

    1 tbsp of olive oil

    Mixed leaves, to serve

    METHOD

    Mix the lightly cooked sweetcorn, spring onions, courgette, flour, beaten egg, milk and some salt and pepper in a large bowl and set aside.

    In a bowl, mix the chilli sauce with the lime juice and set aside.

    Heat the olive oil in a large, non-stick pan and spoon in four tablespoon-sized mounds of the fritter mixture, spaced apart (you may need to do this in two batches). When golden brown on the underside, turn over and cook for 3 mins more until golden.

    Remove with a slotted spoon. Serve the fritters topped with a poached egg (optional) and mixed leaves and a drizzle of the sweet chilli dressing.

    Strawberry & rhubarb dessert bars made from freshly picked homegrown produce. Strawberry & rhubarb dessert bars made from freshly picked homegrown produce.

    Strawberry and Rhubarb Dessert Bars

    Crumb layers

    188g plain flour

    1/2 tsp baking soda

    1/4 tsp salt

    120g rolled oats

    110g light brown sugar

    110g granulated sugar

    170g unsalted butter, melted

    2 tsp vanilla extract

    Filling

    275g hulled and diced strawberries

    190g diced rhubarb, sliced 1/4-inch thick

    1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

    70g granulated sugar

    1 tbsp cornstarch

    METHOD

    For the crumb layer: Preheat oven to 180 degrees celsius.

    Butter a 9 by 9-inch baking dish and line with buttered parchment paper.

    In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and salt. Add in oats, brown sugar and granulated sugar and whisk to blend, while using fingertips to break up small clumps of brown sugar.

    Whisk vanilla into the melted butter then pour the melted butter over the oat mixture. Stir with a spatula until mixture is evenly moistened.

    Press 2/3 of the mixture into prepared baking dish, set aside remaining 1/3.

    For the filling: Add diced strawberries and rhubarb to a medium mixing bowl. Toss with lemon juice.

    In a small mixing bowl whisk together sugar and cornstarch. Pour sugar mixture over strawberry mixture and toss to coat.

    Pour the strawberry mixture over the bottom crumb layer in baking dish then evenly sprinkle remaining 1/3 crumb mixture over top.

    Bake in a preheated oven until golden brown and crisp and the filling is bubbling. This should take about 45 - 50 minutes.

    Cool on a wire rack until warm then cut into squares.

    Serve warm with vanilla ice cream if desired.

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