If you follow Becky Hodges on Instagram (@just_another_instamum), you will know that she’s partial to a good brew. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such pretty cups of tea! But in between sipping on a strong Assam with a drop or two of honey (her personal favourite), holding down a part-time job, being wife to Dean, and mum to Monty (nearly three) and Willow (17 months), Becky has also been busy creating her own baby sleepwear line. I don’t know where she finds the time!
Launching next month, Didi and Bud is an English homegrown brand with a focus on design-led, minimalist sleepsuits. Everything, from the sleepsuit patterns to the beautiful prints are Becky’s creation, with a little help from her nearest and dearest. The top hat pattern, for instance, was designed by her and then drawn by her dad.
Named after her two children – Didi is the name affectionately given to Willow by her big brother, and Bud comes from “little buddy”, something Becky has always called her son – Didi and Bud is all about bringing a classic yet modern twist to baby sleepwear.
Fresh and minimalist
“I wanted to create something different – something with a minimalist feel and a real focus on the design element,” Becky says. “I’ve always loved the babies looking little and being comfy, but I wanted to see more grown-up designs. Yes, these sleepsuits are for babies, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that they need to be adorned with bright colours, teddy bears and Disney characters.”
Becky’s debut collection takes on a quintessentially English, mini gent and little woman theme. “English fashion is very much about ladies and gentlemen at the moment, and I wanted to translate that to babywear too,” she says.
To start with, there will be four different patterns you can get your hands on – the penny farthing, top hats, lace umbrella and the vintage bicycle, in black, blue, pink and grey, respectively. While proud of them all, she admits that the penny farthing is probably her stand-out piece. “I’ve got a big monochrome crush, and I’m so pleased with how this one turned out. I hope it will be popular with all the other monochrome lovers out there too.”
Made in England
Aside from the aesthetic, Becky has also been determined to produce her sleepsuits locally and has paid a great deal of attention to sourcing her materials. “From the start, my aim has been to create safe and comfortable clothing which I am ethically and socially proud of,” she says. “I was keen to support British makers, but it was also important to have absolute confidence in the materials I was choosing.”
Months and months of preparation have got Becky to where she is today. Last week she unveiled Didi and Bud on Instagram, and from 1 June she’ll be taking her first orders.
“I don’t know if I will make a success of this. But I feel like I owe it to myself and my littlies to give it a go,” she says. “As a new mum who’s recently stepped away from my career and then stepped back again, I realised that I wanted to be in control of my work/life balance. I don’t want to be a commute away from my children.
“Like many mothers, when on maternity leave, I found myself feeling more creative. I couldn’t turn my back on that,” she adds. “I hope this new venture will teach me a lot about the creative world and what it takes to be a mumpreneur.”
Different is good
To anyone else thinking of setting up their own business, Becky has a tip or two. “I guess I’d say, trust your gut instinct. And make sure your ideas are your own; have faith in what you’re doing. My babygrows are meant to be a little bit different, so I completely understand that they won’t appeal to everyone. I’m just following my own ideas and what feels right for my designs, similarly to the way I am with my children.”
And finally, Becky says that you should always prepare yourself for the odd setback. “It will happen, but it’s about figuring out how to bounce back. Oh and buy lots of teabags!”
You can find Didi and Bud on Instagram. The website is coming soon.