Goulburn mother Tash Jurinic is grateful her 13-month-old daughter Georgia is a sound sleeper. This has given Tash the opportunity to establish, launch and promote her home business venture, Sustainable Bub, which offers a wide range of preloved baby clothing for under $7 an item.
The idea came after joining a mothers group Goulburn Base Hospital recommended. “We were all talking one day about baby clothes and how fast babies grow out of their clothes. You are forever buying new clothes,” Tash said.
Discovering all the new mothers were buying secondhand baby clothes, Tash took another step towards her little enterprise. “When I was up at my mum’s house on the Central Coast I actually saw a shop that sold preloved baby clothes and I thought, oh my God, this is an amazing idea,” she said. “There is just nothing like that in Goulburn.”
Collaborating with her mothers group and looking at how other people have kept up with their babies clothing needs gave Tash ideas for her own business model tailored for Goulburn. “You have your core mothers group and they have mums as well, so it is really good getting opinions from other mums as well as to what they need and what they want,” Tash said.
Coming up with a name and a descriptive marketing tagline, she then began gathering and adding to her stock of babies clothes. “The house is full of baby clothes at the moment,” she said.
“[Next came] understanding how to advertise that business in Goulburn and looking at the option of making it an online shop at the moment,” she said. “But I am hoping down the track we can open it as a shop front because I think it is really beneficial to the Goulburn area.”
Pitching the idea to mothers unleashed a wave of positive feedback.
She says bulk buying enables her offer of “nothing over $7”.
“But also we have had so many generous people donate clothes to us, just because they want to make sure the clothes are getting recycled and used again,” Tash said.
She says she is not making a huge profit but remains passionate about keeping her costs down, helping other mothers and earning enough money to keep the business going.
“Once I advertised the business before it was actually opened I had a lot of people come to me and say they would like to donate clothes,” she said. A woman donated homemade knitted blankets her grandmother made. “They were beautiful, so I gave everyone who made a purchase that night of the launch a homemade blanket. It is not something I want to make money off; I want to share that with people.”
Donated and bulk-purchased clothing was in near new condition, having been worn only once or twice and had so much more wear in them.
“What is the point of putting them in the landfill when they are practically brand new anyway?” Tash said.
She has been advertising a Christmas package for expectant mothers or ones with newborn babies. “A lot of the items have been donated by the community that we are building already,” she said. “I am very big on giving back. If I have had something donated to me, I am happy to give that back to someone.”
She offers secure payment via PayPal or bank transfer and organises pick-up days on Tuesdays and Thursdays from her home. She wraps up and packages the clothing with the purchaser’s name on them.
“It has been a busy couple of weeks but my partner Stan Byrnes helps as well,” she said. “With a 13-month-old baby it hasn’t been easy. He replies to messages; he is always here for [clothes] pick-ups too. He has been very helpful.
She spends a lot of time online at all hours marketing and uploading images. “I am still at home at the moment with my bub. I do it in the evening so I have to be selective with my time as well.”
Georgia has been sleeping through the night since she was two months old and naps during the day as her mother, who came to Goulburn five years ago, helps a growing circle of Goulburn mothers handle the joys and challenges of raising young families.